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Switching specialties last minute


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19 hours ago, last min switch said:

Last year, I went unmatched after applying to Opthalmology. And over the last year, I did three dermatology electives and I fell in love with the field... I was wondering how the admission committee would look at my application given my previous interest in Opthalmology.

Why not try for ophthalmology again? I know someone at UWO that matched after taking a research year. So did not match first try despite multiple interviews. I think it just happens.... he seems like a great guy who knows.

May I ask if you had any interviews? What do you think happened?

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2 hours ago, dooogs said:

Why not try for ophthalmology again? I know someone at UWO that matched after taking a research year. So did not match first try despite multiple interviews. I think it just happens.... he seems like a great guy who knows.

May I ask if you had any interviews? What do you think happened?

 

I agree, ophtho is one of the rare forgiving specialties that considers re-applicants. I know of 2 that matched after doing an extra year as well.

OP should seriously consider re-applying to ophtho.

Otherwise I wouldn't bother with derm, just forget it. Carms is alreayd more competitive than ever, and even some programs in fam/psych are getting bit tight. If you wanna maximize your chance to get matched apply to a bunch of non-competitive programs/specialties. Not matching 2 years in a roll will be a big red flag. 

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12 minutes ago, codebar said:

Nothing prevents you from applying to both.

Is there a new rule refreining people to apply to more than 1 speciality?

Nope

also that raises an important point - it's like med school admissions all over again. Sure knowing the odds can be emotionally satisfying (some kind of certainty > uncertainty) but it shouldn't change the approach really. No real cost to apply, and a non-zero chance of success. Another cannot lose, but might win type of thing. In life those are rare - and usually that is a sign to go for it. 

 

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As mentioned, your chances are really slim but 30$/program isn't much so I guess you should still apply (you miss 100% of the shots you don't take). On the other hand, I would prioritize ophthalmology or family medicine interviews over dermatology ones and I would make sure the time you spend on the dermatology letters and what not doesn't decrease the quality of your applications in the two specialties you should be focusing on.

Like others have said, you really need to match this year or you're a bit screwed.

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With specialties as difficult as derm, they are swimming in applicants who have near perfect CVs. There are many derm gunners who don't get in each year. I don't think you have any realistic chance with dermatology given the competitiveness. I would honestly focus on trying to match to something that is more feasible. I would strongly consider IM or FM for you if you are interested in dermatology, they are similarities and you can do some derm with FM + derm certificate. 

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Much of CARMS is about the narrative. You will need a good one to explain to the committee how you went unmatched for one of the most competitive specialities and in your year off pivoted to another uber competitive speciality. I think doing the 3 Derm electives will make it very hard to demonstrate your commitment to Ophthalmology and your previous record will make derm programs sceptical as well. Not to mention the illusion that you are chasing the most lucrative specialities in Medicine. I would strongly recommend applying to family medicine as a backup. As mentioned, you will be able to do some derm in your practice as a family doctor.

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