The SOM Office of Medical Education offers a system of career advising to guide students in the selection of a medical specialty. Both individual and group career counseling opportunities are provided to medical students throughout their four years of study, along with other opportunities such as the House Program, Career Development Series, Residency Fair and Primary Care Day. There are also class meetings, Match preparation meetings, and student interest groups. These opportunities allow students to pursue individual academic interests and ensure that students are adequately prepared to enter the specialty of their choosing.
Houses at UMMC is a medical school community designed to ensure that medical students are connected to campus resources and receive adequate social and academic support. First-year students are assigned to one of eight houses with a myriad mentors and resources. Students remain in their assigned house throughout their tenure. The program includes wellness activities, engagement in the preclinical advising program, delivery of AAMC’s Careers in Medicine Program, and leadership and mentoring skill development.
In an effort to help students learn about the different career options available, School of Medicine faculty have volunteered to serve as mentors to students wanting to explore different specialties. Students may contact anyone on the list below to obtain specialty information.
During each academic year, the SOM Office of Medical Education plans and coordinates a weekly career development series. The series, held on Thursdays during the noon hour, is focused on first- and second-year students, but open to all students. Clinical, academic and research career opportunities are presented. Residents, fellows and faculty are on hand for questions from students.
The vice dean for medical education communicates with medical students at established class meetings with regard to curricular and career choices, as well as on an informal basis.
During the first year, the vice dean for medical education talks with students during orientation and at the dean breakfasts. Second-year students hear from the deans about clerkships and electives at their M2 class meeting in February. During the third year, at the M3 class meeting, medical students meet with deans and others to discuss components of the fourth year and requirements for graduation, such as required courses, elective courses and opportunities for extramural blocks. The process of residency application and matching is also discussed. Fourth-year students have their final class meeting at the beginning of the spring semester to discuss graduation procedures and requirements.
At the end of the third year and beginning of the fourth year, the deans involved in preparation of the Medical Student Performance Evaluations (MSPE) meet with each student individually to discuss their residency application plans and the MSPE. The students’ interests and vocations, the strengths and weaknesses of their application, the competitiveness of their specialty choice and other factors that might influence application and matching strategy are all discussed in these meetings. Students may schedule additional meetings as needed in order to feel comfortable with their specialty choice and individual career plan.
Primary Care Day (PCD) is a daylong event hosted each year by the M2 Evers’ Society members. It highlights, for first-year medical students, career opportunities in primary care, giving them exposure to medical specialties as well as interaction with doctors who will play integral roles in their medical education during the third and fourth years. Following an introduction to each specialty by a faculty member, a series of simulated medical procedures are taught by the departments of emergency medicine, family medicine, internal medicine, med/peds, obstetrics/gynecology and pediatrics. The day concludes with lunch.
The SOM Office of Medical Education, in collaboration with the Office for Graduate Medical Education, coordinates a fall Residency Fair, which is open to all four classes of medical students. All residency programs have an exhibit. Those faculty, residents and staff involved in the residency programs are able to interact with students, and students have the unique opportunity to learn more about specific programs on campus as well as specialty choices in general.