Match, Advising, ACEP Scientific Assembly, Residency Fair

Navigating the EMRA Residency Program Fair at ACEP16

Attention, medical students!

The American College of Emergency Physicians' Scientific Assembly, also known as ACEP16, is quickly approaching. Mark your calendars for Saturday, Oct. 15. The medical student events begin at 8:45 am, with the EMRA Medical Student Forum, which this year features tracks for every level of training:

  • MSIV: Navigating the Application & Match Process

  • MSII/MSIII: Positioning Yourself for Success: The First Few Years

  • MSIV: Interview Day Advice

  • International Students

The annual EMRA Medical Student Lunch offers incredible networking, all leading up to the 2-hour EMRA Residency Program Fair.

Never been to a Residency Program Fair? This is one of the most important opportunities for you take advantage of at the conference. For fourth-year medical students, this is your chance to talk directly with representatives from programs to which you have just applied, and students at other levels can begin to gather information on programs you are interested in or, conversely, which you know nothing about. There will be more than 125 programs for you to meet and explore! Here's your guide to navigating the EMRA Residency Program Fair.

  1. Have a plan.

There are 125+ programs in one room, and you only have 2 hours. The room will be organized by geographic region, so take a look at the map and have a plan. At this point, most interview offers will have been sent out, so bring your list of programs applied to and programs that offered you an interview. Reach out to those you haven't heard from and stop at the booths of the programs where you will be interviewing and say hello.

  1. Be professional.

Act professionally in both in dress and demeanor. You are on display from the moment you walk in the room. This is a recruiting event for residency programs, but this is also your opportunity to show them your interest and the way you carry yourself in a professional setting. Have copies of your CV in case programs ask for it. Think of this as an interview.

  1. Be interested.

What better way to show interest than to have questions specific to each program? Take the time to come up with some well-thought-out questions. Remember, you really are interviewing the programs. At the end of the interview trail you will have several programs to compare and will need to find ways to differentiate them. Ask those questions that will get you the answers you need to create your match list.

  1. Follow up.

Did you get a chance to talk to the PD from your dream program? Write it down so you can comment on this experience on interview day. Did you talk to a resident who really sparked your interest in their program? Again, write this down (along with their name) so you can bring it up during your interview. Gather all the information you can and organize it after the event to help you make an informed decision.

Remember, this is your opportunity for programs to see you as the person behind the electronic piles of ERAS applications they receive. They will remember you if you make an effort and have a genuine interest in their program. So put your best food forward, engage yourself in conversations, and have fun while networking in the best specialty there is!