As you may or may not know, tomorrow is one of the biggest days for medical students all across the country: Match Day.
The Match is a process by which graduating fourth year medical students are placed into open residency positions in what is hopefully a program of their choice. For those of you unfamiliar, here’s a quick summary:
To start, students select and apply to however many programs they deem necessary for them to find work in their chosen field. They’re invited to interview with these programs, and then following all interviews, students make a top ten or top twelve or top sixty gajillion list of programs in the order of their preference.
Meanwhile, all of the residency programs are doing essentially the same thing; they’re creating lists of interviewed applicants, ranked from most to least desirable.
And then, what I like to picture as a magical box with a hamster spinning on a wheel inside compares all of the lists from all of the students and all of the programs across the country and “matches” everyone to a future residency program.
The magical box-dwelling hamster will always choose on the side of the student if possible. For example, if your top ranked program has 30 open positions and you’re 32nd on their list (but you’re first on Program #3’s list!), you will still get to go to that program as long as at least two individuals higher on that list received placement elsewhere. If all 30 students ahead of you also listed said program first, then hopefully you’ll have better luck at Program #2. And if none of your programs want you, you’ll get a not-so-friendly email suggesting you try to scrounge up one of the leftover positions in the week leading up to Match, but let’s not talk about that…
And then, on Match Day, medical students across the nation gather together in champagne-filled parties to open essentially the most life-altering fortune cookies of their lives, and there’s lots of screaming and tears of joy (or sorrow) as everyone learns their fate together.
…this is an absurdly long post for two simple points:
1. My Match Day is precisely one year from today, and yet I still don’t know what I’m going to apply for. Holy nerves, Batman!
2. Good luck to all my fourth year classmates, fellow bloggers, and fellow medical students! I’ll be thinking good thoughts for you all tomorrow!
PS: For those of you having the same “OH NO, HOW WILL I LIVE WITHOUT READING I’S AND O’S ON MY GOOGLE READER?!” fit that I am, never fear: you can still follow me on Bloglovin.