Match Day, it is definitely one of the most exciting but daunting days for final year medical students. The time just doesn’t seem to be passing fast enough for the e-mail to come in. And finally, when it does, did I match? Or didn’t I?
Great, you’ve matched! All of those hours of studying, board exams, rotations and interviewing have finally paid off and you will begin transitioning into your intern year to officially start your job as a physician! This is one of the most rewarding moments for most medical students. But, there are also a large number of medical students that unfortunately, working just as hard, studying and interviewing were unable to successfully match and secure a residency position.
How do you move forward from this? Its as if your entire career and all that you’ve worked for has come crashing down! Through the devastation of receiving that e-mail students must stay positive and focused. Go ahead, have a moment of despair, but once it passes pick yourself back up and make a plan. From March until July when the next round of applications open and September when applications are submitted, students have 4-6 months to improve their application and themselves as an applicant to ensure the results are in their favor this time around.
There is a wide range of opportunities to get involved in, including graduate clinical placements, postgraduate diploma programs, research, volunteer work as well completing a remaining board exam that would have otherwise been taken during the intern year. Be sure not to fall off the wagon and out of the loop, medicine is forever changing and there are learning opportunities in every day. Since intern year will now prospectively be starting the following summer, the last thing students want to do is fall behind between now and next July. Keep yourself motivated and keep moving forward.