College of

Career Development Program Overview

Career Development Year One:
Career planning begins with conducting an honest self-assessment which is the foundation to making all good career decisions. Creating a professional narrative begins with self exploration encompassing life experiences, values, interests and personality traits. It is not only the examination of skill and knowledge, but an introspective view of self giving the student an engraved path to a fulfilling specialty choice.

Year One Overview

Career Development Year Two:
The purpose of career exploration is to gain knowledge about the nature of work and characteristics of physicians in various specialties that match a student’s interests, values, skills and personality. Conducting thorough career research requires collecting information from various resources. Informative interviewing with specialists can provide insight into what professional and lifestyle issues physicians’ face in practice. Collecting quantitative salary and workforce data can help predict job growth and financial stability. Students begin assessing general practice versus sub-specialization. Reviewing website resources, journals, research articles, and obtaining information from medical organizations and associations are also part of the investigative process. Gaining knowledge about specialty interests can help a student elect which specialties appeal to him/her more than others.

Year Two Overview

Career Development Year Three:
After conducting a thorough self-assessment and gaining knowledge of the specialties, students begin to narrow their specialty choice options. Integrating acquired knowledge and new clinical experiences help clarify how values, interests, personality and skills correlate with their desired specialties. Specialty choice decisions also require assessing preferences of what population of patients to care for; degree of care; desired location of practice; practice environment; controllable lifestyle issues; reimbursement for services rendered; and appraising levels of newly learned skills. Articulating these factors provides a baseline of residency options and provides direction for researching graduate medical education opportunities. Students begin preparations for interviewing with residency programs by refining their curriculum vitas, personal statement, obtaining strong letters of recommendation and continued academic success.

Career Development Year Four:
Where will tomorrow take you? After completing a comprehensive career assessment, students will be confident in their specialty choice meeting their personal and professional goals. In the final year of medical school, the medical student transforms into a competitive residency applicant and the main focus becomes securing a residency position. Applicants will put together an effective implementation plan for finalizing their application materials and hitting the interview trail. After months of preparation and interviewing, the time comes to decide where to continue medical education training over the next three to seven years. Making this life altering career decision requires ongoing thoughtful discussions with support persons as well as a trusted advisor. A final commitment will be solidified with a successful match into a graduate medical education program of the applicant’s desired choice. However, the destination does not end with residency. Career planning will continue throughout the professional lifecycle necessitating honest self-assessment; gaining knowledge about opportunities; making good decisions; and beginning a new commitment.