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timing of subI question
Posted: 05 April 2009 05:14 PM  
Total Posts  4
Joined  2009-03-30

Hi, I’m new to the site, and new to my decision to pursue neurosurgery.  I just decided within the past month or so, and I’m a 3rd year so am now faced with applying for away subIs without much of a framework. 

I recently dropped Pediatrics to take Neurosurg at my home institution, seeing as my decision was so new I needed to schedule this ASAP.  Unfortunately I am now finding that some programs require Peds before I can do an AI at their program (eg WashU, and Northwestern), but many other programs don’t specifically state that all the core clerkships must be finished prior to doing my AI. 

Does anyone know which programs would be OK without Peds as a pre-req?

In addition, I’m now faced with trying to decide when to do Peds.  If I do it in July, then the earliest my 1st away could be starting Aug31. Is this crazy?? I feel like that is just too late.. I will be rotating with people who have already had one away experience, and will this just be too late to try and get a letter??  The other alternative is to try and schedule one away in July (and hope I can get where and when I want), and then do Peds and do my 2nd away in Oct or Nov (is Nov way too late?).

Thanks, would love your help!

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Posted: 05 April 2009 05:30 PM  
Total Posts  229
Joined  2007-10-18

From memory, places that don’t care about what courses you have taken (some want the school to verify you will be a valid 4th year student by the time of the rotation) include JHU, USC, UCSF, Brigham, MGH, ?UCLA. Places that have lists of required completed courses include Cleveland clinic, Barrow, ?UW?, ?Duke?. Mayo says they care but in fact they seem never to actually check if you don’t mention it (or about the April 1 application deadline, again, so long as you don’t remind them). If your school will let you, you could just do peds in your 4th year, after all your applications and subIs are finished. I did several core rotations during 4th year (even after interviews) - but my school doesn’t care.  Some places with requirements can be bypassed by speaking directly with the department. I think there is a central online application service for a number of the programs now - not sure if this makes it easier or harder to fly under the radar with a missing requirement.

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Posted: 05 April 2009 05:40 PM  
Total Posts  4
Joined  2009-03-30

Thanks Stem Cell. I think I just got a schedule to work out, with my 1st away from mid Aug to mid Sept and my 2nd in October. Is this a bad decision?? Are these too late? Do you think I could still get a letter out of the 1st away?

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Posted: 05 April 2009 05:45 PM  
Total Posts  229
Joined  2007-10-18
2010 hopeful - 05 April 2009 05:40 PM

Thanks Stem Cell. I think I just got a schedule to work out, with my 1st away from mid Aug to mid Sept and my 2nd in October. Is this a bad decision?? Are these too late? Do you think I could still get a letter out of the 1st away?

Letter from 1st, probably yes, but you will want other letters on file before then. From second, will probably not help you getting interviews, but interviewers will be able to see it when you visit (take extras with you, in case the program prints your application before it is filed). October sub-I could likely mean you have to turn down early interview offers. Also, you may run the risk of not get dates you want at certain programs after receiving invites, because you will not be able to check your email q2h and schedule interviews throughout the day when you’re scrubbed in the OR. Consider having a significant other, etc, serve as your secretary during October, armed with your master schedule of ideal interview date selections for each program you applied to, pre-determined to minimize transcontinental flights etc..

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Posted: 05 April 2009 05:51 PM  
Total Posts  4
Joined  2009-03-30

Thanks, good points and advice… I’ll mull over this some more…

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Posted: 05 April 2009 07:03 PM  
Total Posts  17
Joined  2008-12-31

Great thread! I am in a very similar situation...I will finish my last 3rd year rotation in mid-july and I would like to do my home AI in neurosurgery before doing my aways. My home AI only begins at the first of every month so the earliest I can start my home AI is August 1st so the earliest away would be Sept 1st… So I guess I would only be able to complete 1 away before submitting my LOR and application? I could still do more aways after the application due date but as mentioned above, this would start to interfere with the early interview dates and even scheduling the interviews… Although the LOR from that away wouldnt be weighed in the decision to get an interview (since it would be after the application due date), that away rotation at least will help in getting an interview at the away site? Thanks in advance for your time and a big congrats to those who matched!!

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