Osteopathic students matching into allo programs

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Anonymous (not verified)
My Perspective

As promised, and I apologize this was not posted earlier: My perspective as an Osteopathic student and the AUA match. First, I did not enter this process light hearted. I knew that I wanted to do Urology early and knew early on that as an osteopathic student I might suffer a disadvantage in the MD dominated AUA world. I did my homework about the process and researched which programs have been “DO friendly”, where my LORs had attended, and basically nailed down any connections that I had made. Furthermore, I did not listen to the naysayers who said I did not stand a chance.It helps to have great friends too. I had a few very inspirational individuals help guide me, and as blind of a process seemed to be, it was of fundamental importance. I relied A LOT on other’s opinions and perspectives and this is my contribution to that process for those following in the years to come, I hope it helps. Rather than ramble on and on about what I think, I’m going to bullet point my advice from MY PERSPECTIVE (AKA, this is not the end-all be-all of advice, just mine) Please take this with a grain of salt.Advice·         #1-Have fun, this really where the fruit of your med school labor is.·         Have a personality. You will stick out like a sore thumb on the interview trail if you don’t.·         Set up your Sub-Is early. I had my entire 4th year planned until December by the end of February last year. Keep in mind the AUA programs for the most part use VISAS and my school doesn’t, the process was time consuming and frustrating so I suggest starting early.o   Peak interview month is November (DON’T set up a Sub-I for this month)o   If you’re applying to AOA programs, most WILL NOT interview you without “seeing you” for at least a week or two. §  Therefore, make it happen, and while, very, very, inconvenient, do at least 3-2week rotations or more at AOA programs you want to maybe be at.·         I took my boards early. For AUA programs, forget your COMLEX score…they have no idea what it means and only look to compare apples to apples, so if you are applying to AUA programs you must take the USMLE.o   I knew having a 230s Step I made me average at best so I opted to take Step 2 early and took time to actually really study for it. In the end, this probably was one of my biggest assets.o   Keep in the back of your mind who your LORs are going to be from. They don’t have to be all from urologists, but they should be if you can manage it. I did have one Gen surg letter§  Not a must, but I would strongly encourage you to have an LOR in your file from a urologist who is a known entity, it can only help you.·         Applyingo   I applied to both AOA programs and AUA programs. I applied to urology and only urology—no pre-lims, or gen-surg spots. Cost was not an issue—I reasoned not spending the money because applications are freaking expensive above 50 programs was going to be A LOT more expensive in the end had I not matched-so apply VERY broadly.o   Those AUA programs that chose to interview me, the Osteopathic part of my application only came up occasionally, and when it did, it was in a positive light such as “We have had blank DO graduate here or just so you know we don’t care”§  Therefore, if you get the interview, don’t be anxious about the difference. I truly believe I was on an even playing field as everyone else at my interviews…if anything else it was more awkward for me when talking to other applicants not the interviewers.o   Honesty is the best policy with AOA programs. They will ask you, and if you are applying to the AUA match, be honest—I think they saw me as more of a competitive applicant for telling them this.o   After you interview, regardless of the program, stay in contact with them. Just don’t interview and disappear off the map…write thank yous (a must, I heard from several PDs and interviewers about how important they were), consider a second look; keep in touch with the residents. o   Go on every interview, even if you think its not a place you want to go-you’ll be surprised at what you learn and even may change your opinion on what you think (there were a few programs I was pleasantly surprised by and frankly 1 or 2 programs that I did not rank because I was so disappointed with them)o   I put the process before the Lord, and in the end trusted I would end up where He wanted me to be.Stats·         COMLEX Level 1-Mid 600s·         COMLEX Level 2-Low 700s·         COMLEX PE-Passed·         USMLE Step 1-Low 230s·         USMLE Step 2-High 250s·         Research o   None-this only hurt me at maybe 1 or 2 places I interviewed, but there was nothing I could do to change it, so oh well.·         Clinical Gradeso   Passed all with great comments, only one true honor rotation, but trust me, no one looks at this. They just want to read what the preceptor had to say—are you an idiot or a good teachable student?·         Sub-Is-I did a total of 12 weeks·         Applicationso   Applied to a ridiculous numbero   Interviewed Offers§  10 AUA programs·         Went on 9 (date conflict)§  8 AOA programs·         Went on 7 (date conflict) In the end, I matched and at one of my top choices (Truly all “Top 5” were all places that I thought would just be awesome to be at). I am ESTATIC to be as blessed as I am. I am going to a great program for my training that I know is a perfect fit for what I was looking for. The whole process was exciting, exhausting, and expensive, but I had a wonderful time even though you teeter back and forth feeling confident and feeling worthless. I met some really wonderful individuals who I would be honored to train and work alongside.  The field is honestly filled with great people. P.S. A hotly debated topic is the AOA program strengths. I found some of the programs to be very impressive and at par with the AUA programs I interviewed at, and some of the programs I would not be happy training at. I didn’t interview at them all, but if I had submitted a rank list yesterday for the AOA programs I would have ranked my top 3 programs as Cook County, Lansing, and DMC/POH in no particular order.-Again, this only my opinion and I’m sure others would see it differently. 

Anonymous (not verified)
Question for " My Perspective"

Everything you posted was very helpful, however can you also post the residency programs you thought where " DO Friendly " future applicants from osteopathic schools. 

bla01013
  Hopefully this answers some

 Hopefully this answers some questions about Urology for osteopathic students.  Please understand that some of this is my own opinion, some is what I’ve heard on the interview trail, and some is from a conversing with a current resident in uro. Hopefully some others from this year’s cycle will post their experience/advice. 1.       Chicago – Extremely busy program, mostly open procedures but now doing rotations at Christ hospital with fellowship trained robotic surgeons, cysto room running all day with junior residents, autonomy, pathology like NO other program, seriously crazy number of cases, trauma, program expanding, full time peds and urogyn on staff, well known hospital, all that goes with county hospital, funding for 6 residents. Program Director has great vision for residents and program. Chief resident will do fellowship at NYU in Onc. 2.       DMC – Have Dr. Santucci.  Don’t know much more, didn’t spend any time there.  Grand rounds combined with other Detroit programs. Heard program director is a foodie and will take you out to eat, super nice guy.  Take 2-3 residents/year. 3.       MSU – Lansing – Two services, one is private practice which is extremely busy, one is academic including program director who is peds.  80% of time at Sparrow, 20% at Ingham.  Expanding OR at Sparrow and da Vinci Si coming to BOTH hospitals, recent grad became robotics chairman at hospital in Seattle fresh out of residency, unified residents, plentiful research opportunities, funding for 6 residents, roll model attendings.  Tons of robotics - chief resident this year was doing skin to skin robotic prostates last year.  4.       Einstein – Largest program, application in for dual accreditation, most attendings trained at Penn or Einstein.  Only program with 2 years in general surgery.  Residents are extremely intelligent, onc at Sloan Kettering, Peds at CHOP, 4 residents/year.  Considered most "allopathic" DO program, have Dr. Metro, fellowship trained robotic surgeons, grads do well. 5.       Charleston, WV – program growing and adding fellowship trained attendings, Cleveland Clinic transplant attending, hospitals 7 minutes apart, busy program, chill intern year, Peds in Columbus, residents are very close, PD is down to earth, 2 residents/year. 6.       UNDMJ – Don’t know much, program director is younger, sharp, heard very busy program, connections to MD Anderson (PD did fellowship there), heard lots of positives. 6 spots. 7.       Mount Clemens – base hospitals, TONS of attendings, grand rounds with DMC, can’t remember if they are getting 1 or 2 da Vinci Si robots, only 1-2 residents/hospital so you stay busy, 2 residents/year, have done very well in Urology Jeopardy and other competitions. 8.       St. John’s – newer program, old program director from Mount Clemens program… has been doing it for 20+ years, program takes 2 residents/year, this upcoming year most senior residents will be in 3rd year, fellowship trained robotic surgeon w/ da Vinci Si. 9.       Grand Rapids – Very new hospital (4 yrs old), adding staff, possibly expanding to cover downtown hospital in Grand Rapids since no other urology program is there, PD has ties to Cleveland Clinic and previous resident there for fellowship, Peds rotation for 2 months at CHOP, 1 resident/year 10.   Olympia Fields – Didn’t spend any time there.    From an email Q/A with a current resident, my comments are in parenthesis:   1. Boards: Depends if you're applying DO or MD.  Honestly, unless you're at the top of the class, have publications, and scored > 245 give or take on USMLE, I wouldn't waste time applying MD.  As for comlex, if you're < 500, definitely take step 2 early, aim for minimum > 550, preferably closer or above 600.  If on step 1 you got 550 +/- 10, your score is equivocal and if you're confident you can go up on step 2, take it early.  But you'll land interviews with this score probably.  If you got 590+ on step 1, I'd wait to take step 2 until after ERAS is sent out.  That’s the beauty of being DO, it’s really about more than just boards.  (A program director told me this year he won’t consider people less than ~550.)   2.  The best DO programs are Einstein, Cook County Chicago, MSU Lansing, and Detroit Medical Center in my opinion.  As for programs that are DO friendly, NEOUCOM, Rochester, LIJ I know of people matching. Take a look at other posts to see what others have said.   3.  Regarding two week audition rotations: Two weeks is generally enough for them to assess if you'll fit in and show them your knowledge base.  If you're in the area of the programs, go to their journal clubs or weekly meetings if you can.  You can get this info from a resident.   4. Books: Penn clinical manual is great b/c it reads like a text book and is thorough. It’s a bit difficult to use from the quick 5 minutes in between cases aspect but for preparing for a rotation is great. Secrets is out of date, don’t use it. Pocket guide to urology by Jeff Weider is the bible of urology that all residents use, however, it’s pretty advanced. I used it on my second sub-I after I had a good foundation.  I mainly used a small book called Urology for the house officer which was great as I was learning. First half of the book is on key presentations like what to do when you’re called for acute urinary retention, hematuria, etc.  Second half is selected topics like all the cancers, stones, bph, etc etc.  It’s more introductory, but concise and if you know everything in it to the best of your ability, you'll be great.     5.  Research: Becoming very important for DO programs and has always been important for MD programs.  Try to get a case report at least, or an actual project of course is better.  Though a uro related project is ideal, any publication helps as they mainly want you to be able to publish during residency.  Uro is a small community, knowing people helps with everything. Your audition rotation is by far the most important; it'll be rough because you constantly have to be "on." It's only one month though.   

Anonymous (not verified)
"Furthermore, I did not

"Furthermore, I did not listen to the naysayers who said I did not stand a chance." this is the only line that needs to be read on this whole post.I have heard two things from just about every DO student interested in Urology 1.  Dont bother they wont let you in over thier own (not true it happens every year) 2.  No, I didn't apply, because I knew I wouldn't get in (No person smart enough and confident enough to get into a DO program should ever say something this stupid)I have not heard from a single student who applied to an MD residency, just plenty that did not dare.  I say this, there is only one way to know.  Come next summer this is one DO student who will be applying.I can say one thing for certain, MD programs accept DO's and if you think you are not good enough to get into a MD program you might want to think about if you are good enough to get into a DO program, its not easy.  The odds are much worse for DO's about 50% of students match into DO Urology programs and MD programs match 77%.Last but not least consider it as adding a whole new section to your DO application that no one else has, its as if there was a competive and confident box at the top of the application and you are the only one that gets to check it.  Believe me its going to look very good to the DO programs if you are applying to MD as well because as stated before not many DO's do.  Many DO's are trying to stand out from the crowd, however, paradoxically they seem to do everything in thier power to be a part of the crowd.  Furthermore, don't listen to the naysayers

Bond8204
Comment

Anonymous User wrote:
"Furthermore, I did not listen to the naysayers who said I did not stand a chance." this is the only line that needs to be read on this whole post.I have heard two things from just about every DO student interested in Urology 1.  Dont bother they wont let you in over thier own (not true it happens every year) 2.  No, I didn't apply, because I knew I wouldn't get in (No person smart enough and confident enough to get into a DO program should ever say something this stupid)I have not heard from a single student who applied to an MD residency, just plenty that did not dare.  I say this, there is only one way to know.  Come next summer this is one DO student who will be applying.I can say one thing for certain, MD programs accept DO's and if you think you are not good enough to get into a MD program you might want to think about if you are good enough to get into a DO program, its not easy.  The odds are much worse for DO's about 50% of students match into DO Urology programs and MD programs match 77%.Last but not least consider it as adding a whole new section to your DO application that no one else has, its as if there was a competive and confident box at the top of the application and you are the only one that gets to check it.  Believe me its going to look very good to the DO programs if you are applying to MD as well because as stated before not many DO's do.  Many DO's are trying to stand out from the crowd, however, paradoxically they seem to do everything in thier power to be a part of the crowd.  Furthermore, don't listen to the naysayers
 I don't disagree with the overall sentiment of your post, but it warranted a reply. Yes, some DO students have been matching in the MD match every year, but it's seriously only 1-2 students across the country per year, and I know for a fact that those students who have matched are phenomenal applicants who have nailed every aspect of the application as described above (top of their class, astronomic board scores, multiple urology publications, significant time spent with MD programs, and strong LOR's from those MD rotations). MD uro programs are getting anywhere from 200-400 applications --> 30-40 interviews --> a few positions. While obviously not true about all of them, having the word "osteopathic" in your application is a great reason to screen out your application at plenty of MD urology programs. I'm definitely not a naysayer. I'm an example of a DO student who didn't match in the MD uro match this year and will hopefully match in the DO one coming up on Monday. For perspective, I'm top 10% of my class, had 230s on Step 1, 250s on Step 2, a urology publication and other research experience, and fairly strong letters of recommendation. I only got 5 MD interview offers. All 5 came in November or later (most invites came out in September to mid-October). 3 of my invites were solely the result of me calling or emailing programs to hunt for cancellations (a nice tip for those of you serious about applying to MD urology).In retrospect, if I had been fixated on matching MD, I should have put in time with an MD program and gotten at least 1 LOR from a nationally well-known faculty member of that program. However, my school, like most, limits the number of elective rotations you can do in one specialty, and doing an MD rotation would have taken away from doing auditions with osteopathic programs. Several osteopathic programs require you to put in 2-4 weeks with them in order to earn an interview, regardless of the strength of your application. So in deciding to apply to MD urology, you kind of have to decide where to allocate your resources--do you take away from your chances with the DO match to increase your chances in the MD match? By doing things the way I did, I was offered an interview at all but 1 of the osteopathic urology programs.I disagree with the conclusion you come to regarding those percentages. The 77% from the MD match is based on the number of applicants who submitted rank lists--so there are plenty of applicants who didn't get a single interview who aren't even included in that 77% statistic. Meanwhile, there is substantially less self-selection in that 50% osteopathic applicant number than there is in the MD's who decided to go for urology (i.e. there are many more poorly qualified or half-assed osteopathic students who decide in July, "oh hell, I'll throw in an application for one or two urology programs" or "I applied to urology, but just to the so-and-so program. I'm really applying to general surgery."). It costs a lot of money to apply to MD programs. A $50 AUA match fee. $800+ in ERAS fees. Plane fares (often at the last minute as is well documented on this site). Hotel rooms. That's a big investment to make just to ultimately get the "there was no match" email.1 or 2 osteopathic programs might find it very mildly impressive that you are applying to MD programs. Some will actually find it negative. That's an asinine argument and shouldn't be a reason for or against applying to MD programs.Again, despite all that, I don't disagree with you. I don't regret giving it a try--I agree there's some satisfaction in knowing the result. However, that doesn't mean osteopathic students shouldn't be realistic and should just "shoot for the stars" regardless of their application. I agree with pretty much everything the post before you said--if you don't have those board scores or the other aspects of a strong application that post described, you're wasting your time and money applying to MD. If you do, commit to the MD urology match and make sure to do at least 1 audition with an MD program (frankly, you should probably do more than 1), getting a strong LOR from them. 

Anonymous (not verified)
List of ACGME urology programs that offered interviews this year

I would really appreciate some feedback as to what ACGME urology residency programs offered interviews to D.O. students this year. I don't want to apply to every ACGME program but also don't want to miss a program that may not really care about whether or not they take an MD/DO student. Thanks!

Anonymous (not verified)
DO friendly programs

Here are the programs that I know of that have taken DOs as residents, offered interviews, or have DO faculty. BrownJohns HopkinsVCUSIUSUNY -BrooklynMayo- MNKansasArkansasUTMB-GalvestonGeorgia HSUMinnesotaSouth CarolinaIndianaU of Wisconsin Cincinnati 

Anonymous (not verified)
list of MD programs

Anonymous User wrote:
I would really appreciate some feedback as to what ACGME urology residency programs offered interviews to D.O. students this year. I don't want to apply to every ACGME program but also don't want to miss a program that may not really care about whether or not they take an MD/DO student. Thanks!
 I second this. I know there's some programs who only took in a DO student because of family connections and whatnot but I also know there are other programs out there that are more open to DOs. Some suggestions for where to apply would be really nice.

Anonymous (not verified)
DO friendly programs

To the best of my knowledge, these programs have matched a DO student, have DO faculty, or offered interview:BrownVCUJohns HopkinsSIUIndianaMayo-MNCincinnatiGeorgia HSUArkansasUTMB-GalvestonKansasSouth CarolinaU of WisconsinU of MinnesotaToledoSUNY-Brooklyn 

Anonymous (not verified)
I know Northeastern Ohio def

I know Northeastern Ohio def has taken a DO. What about LIJ?

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