Friday, February 24, 2012

Third Year

We finally had an info session about third year (which starts June 4) this week.  Very briefly, let me explain how third year works.  You rotate through many specialties - 10 weeks of Medicine, 8 weeks of Surgery, 8 weeks of Ob/Gyn, 6 weeks of Pediatrics, 5 weeks of Family Medicine, 6 weeks of Psych/Neuro.  There are 12 different "tracks" that you can choose between for your third year schedule, so you get to decide which order you want to do those rotations in.

To pick your track, we were assigned a lottery number and the lowest lottery number gets to pick their track first.  BUT we carry these numbers through fourth year when it basically goes in reverse order, so if you had a great lottery number third year, you're sort of screwed fourth year, and vice versa (with a couple extra caveats about picking electives).  We picked our lottery number at the beginning of the week and we had until today to switch lottery numbers with someone if we wanted.

I sat at my dining room table with my roommate discussing for hooooouuuuuurrrrrsssss the pros and cons of the tracks, and whether or not I should try and switch my number (41 out of 198) so I would have a better number for fourth year instead of for third year.  Here is a recording of our conversation (start at 45 seconds):

Ok, maybe that's not exactly word for word what our conversation sounded like, but it was pretty close.  "Well I don't want to have surgery in the winter because I'll never see the sun, so clearly I can't choose tracks 1, 2, or 4.  But I don't want it in the summer so I can enjoy the sunshine so clearly I can't choose tracks 7, 8, 10, or 11.  And I don't want medicine last because it's so important for the other rotations, so clearly I can't choose tracks 10-12.  But I can't have medicine first or I'll seem stupid during it so clearly I can't choose tracks 1-3..."

It was even worse when we tried to factor in people switching.  I wanted a higher number for more choice my fourth year, but as soon as someone else with a higher number was willing to switch with me, I immediately got suspicious and started to think maybe my number actually was better.

At the end of the day, I switched with someone for number 179, which means I am close to last for picking this year (not THE last, that honor goes to my roommate who is number 198) so picking my track is out of my hands - I'll get whatever everyone else doesn't want.  And next year, I'll get to pick my schedule almost first.  That may have been an excellent decision, or it may have been the stupidest decision I've ever made.  Most likely, both glasses were poisoned.  But if med school has taught me anything, it's never get involved in a land war in Asia and never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line, and that is information I'll probably be able to use in any and all of my rotations, right?

[but seriously, cue constant panic attack now...]

1 comment:

  1. Hahaha so great. That is why I did not switch my number. I hold the hand I was dealt and will suffer whatever consequences come along with it. But oh shit, I still have to fill out my track preferences... PANIC!