Applying to a back-up specialty?

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uroh
Applying to a back-up specialty?

Anyone have experience with this in the past or is planning to do this in the next match?It's definitely something I consider from time to time because of the not-all-that-improbable chance of not matching, even despite decent stats. My thinking (which is likely not shared by many on this forum) is that while I do love urology, I could suck it up and be at least content in some other fields for pure QOL reasons (e.g. anesthesia). The obviously awkward part about it all is how I'm going to convince someone that I want to enter their field even though I've done 4 urology electives, so I just really wonder how people have handled this in the past, or if doing this is even a common phenomenon at all. And also the issues of early match app + regular match app, applying to the same program for two different specialties and whatever troubles that may bring, etc. etc.. Thoughts? Oh, urology.

Edited by: nicky on 05/11/2015 - 19:50 Reason: Updated by FeedsNodeProcessor
Anonymous (not verified)
Pros and Cons

Well.. From expereience.... It all depends on how you go about doing this. Urology is early match, so any other specialty who sees your transcript/deans letter will know they're your second choice no matter what. Depending on how you spin it, it may work for you (but probably won't). I dual applied this past year and totally had some hostile interviews for my backup specialty. If you hide it well, it may work for you, if not, good luck.

Anonymous (not verified)
same here

I was also thinking about applying to a back up for this next cycle. Both an advisor and a friend who has done this in the past (urology and IM--matched in urology) argued against it. I've heard you need two sets of letters, two personal statements, and you can't apply to the same school/hospital for both, especially if the backup is general surgery. Having to do all of that AND having to explain why you did 4 urology rotations and 1 (if any) in the backup--I would have a hard time working with that on interviews. But then again, urology is competitive, and running the risk of having to take a year off to reapply may not be the best option for some people.

Anonymous (not verified)
yea

Yea... in short, don't do it.... because...... saying you couldn't decide doesnt cut it on interviews.

Abstract
I am in this very situation.

I am in this very situation. However, I am applying to DO programs. There are only a handful of programs which translates into very few spots (~20 nationwide). Additionally, I just got an email indicating one of three aways I had set up will not take students from outside schools next year for rotations. I'm not sure what to do. I know without a doubt this is what I would like to dedicate my life's work and passion to. I'll do whatever it takes. But, I also feel it prudent to plan realistically due to the few number of spots. Has anyone here been through the DO process? Did Gen Surg programs look negatively upon you applying to both?

Abstract
I am in this very situation.

I am in this very situation. However, I am applying to DO programs. There are only a handful of programs which translates into very few spots (~20 nationwide). Additionally, I just got an email indicating one of three aways I had set up will not take students from outside schools next year for rotations. I'm not sure what to do. I know without a doubt this is what I would like to dedicate my life's work and passion to. I'll do whatever it takes. But, I also feel it prudent to plan realistically due to the few number of spots. Has anyone here been through the DO process? Did Gen Surg programs look negatively upon you applying to both?

Anonymous (not verified)
which program?

CarpeDiem wrote:
I am in this very situation. However, I am applying to DO programs. There are only a handful of programs which translates into very few spots (~20 nationwide). Additionally, I just got an email indicating one of three aways I had set up will not take students from outside schools next year for rotations. I'm not sure what to do. I know without a doubt this is what I would like to dedicate my life's work and passion to. I'll do whatever it takes. But, I also feel it prudent to plan realistically due to the few number of spots. Has anyone here been through the DO process? Did Gen Surg programs look negatively upon you applying to both?
which program will not take anyone outside of their school?

Anonymous (not verified)
The best advice I have for

The best advice I have for you is to talk with your program director or urology advisor.  They have been doing this a long time and can ofen tell you what your shot at matching into urology is.  There is absolutely no reason to double apply if you feel you have a decent shot.  However, if you are a borderline candidate then feel free to double apply and do all the extra work (LORs, PS, etc), but realize they are going to know that it is your second choice of career and thus, you will probably match at a lower tier school in that secondary field.

kingnothing
I did it and i regret it. i

I did it and i regret it. i however say that knowing that i have matched and that hindisight is always 20/20.I had good statistics but what i had against me was that i come from a small, not very known school. My interviews were very slow to come so i panicked and applied to 30 general surgery program. I got tons of interviews but only went to two and my biggest deal was not only that it cost me lot of extra money, it was that i had to go through so much stress before and during the interview in case the topic of urology came up since everything on my application screamed UROLOGY.Everyone recommended against it but i still did it. I think you should gauge your competitiveness, your willingness to do another specialty rather than reapplying and how much money you are willing to spend.