Resident involvement in the resident selection process

Residency Program Insider, March 1, 2005

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Dear residency program colleague:

Residency programs' approach to involving residents in the selection process of new residents varies from program to program. However, residency programs can derive the following benefits from involving residents in all steps of this critical process:

Ensure the selection of the best applicants: There are many factors that must be considered when selecting the "best" applicants. For example, in fields like OB/Gyn that require residents to work closely as a team, the best applicants will be those who can work well with colleagues. This somewhat intangible quality is likely better judged by the other residents than by the faculty.

Strengthen commitment of current residents to the incoming residents: There are clear limitations to relying on a simple interview to determine whether an applicant will work well with current residents and other staff. By involving residents in the selection process, you motivate these residents to go the extra mile to teach new residents once they arrive on-site. The result is a more cohesive resident team and improved quality, which is especially important as the applicant pool within some fields has significantly declined.

Encourage applicants: At the time of interview, applicants often want to meet the residents, particularly the PGY-1s. Applicants will be impressed by residents who are clearly integrated into the day-to-day activities of running the program and involved in the selection process for the future of the program.

Consider involving your residents in the selection process. With little additional expenditure of time or money, you can effectively build morale among current residents and better attract strong candidates.

That's all for this week!

All the best,

David Chelmow, MD, FACOG
Director, Tufts Affiliated Hospitals
OB/GYN Residency Program
Associate Professor OB/GYN
Tufts-New England Medical Center

Editor's note: For more information about involving residents in the selection process, check out the April 2005 issue of Residency Program Alert.



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