Current Editors: Michael Ryan and Alec De Jong

(Please email editors if there is blog-worthy news that you would like to see shared)

Past Editors: Keith Wagner, Tim Allen, Kristyna Gleghorn, Dung Mac, Alex Acosta, William Tausend, Sheila Jalalat, Rebecca Philips, Chelsea Altinger, Lindsey Hunter, Alison Wiesenthal, Leslie Scroggins, Mara Dacso, Ashley Group, Fadi Constantine, Emily Fridlington, Joslyn Witherspoon, Tasneem Poonawalla.

Monday, February 24, 2020

March St. Vincent's Dermatology Night Cancelled

There will not be a dermatology night in March as St. Vincent's will be holding their annual benefit fundraising concert on the night of March 5th. The next dermatology night will be the first Thursday of April (4/2/2020) at 5:30pm. UTMB DIG will post a reminder for the April dermatology night in the weeks before.

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Dermatology Residency Applications: Does the Personal Statement Matter?

Yes, according to a new study published in the February 2020 issue of Cutis (105:83-85). The authors found that personal statements containing a dermatologic case had a significantly positive impact on matching into a dermatology residency (p=.013), while personal statements that contained name dropping (p=.014) and religious influences (p=.002) significantly decreased chances of a dermatology match.

UTMB Dermatology Getting Ready for Match Day

The NRMP Rank List Deadline is Wednesday, February 26, 2020 at 9 pm ET. Match Day is Friday, March 20, 2020. Good luck everyone!

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

UTMB Has Two NRMP Program Codes for 2020

This year UTMB has two NRMP Program codes:

1714080R0 (1 position, “Physician Only,” start dermatology residency in July 2020)), only applicants who have completed PGY1 by June 30, 2020 are eligible

1714080A0 (5 positions, “Advanced,” start dermatology residency in July 2021)

Please make sure that your program rank order list is sent to the correct program(s)!

Friday, February 14, 2020

Changes in Step 1 Scoring Could Impact Dermatology Residency Application Cycle

The recent decision to change graded Step 1 examination scores to Pass or Fail starting with incoming medical students (Class of 2024) may have a major impact on future dermatology applicants. Some current applicants do not finalize their decision to apply for dermatology residency positions until they receive Step 1 scores high enough to put them in a competitive position for the dermatology match. However, even with a high Step 1 score, deciding to apply for dermatology residency during the MS3 year typically had the disadvantage of relatively less dermatology research presentations/publications, volunteer work, and professional networking with home school dermatology faculty than applicants that were committed to a dermatology career as early as MS1. Now with no Step 1 score to encourage additional dermatology applicants during their third year of medical school, some may wait for Step 2 scores that will probably not be available until the beginning of their MS4. Those waiting to start dermatology research  and other dermatology interest activities during the summer before ERAS applications open may find that their applications are not as competitive as in the past when they had about a year to demonstrate strong interest in dermatology, and may benefit from delaying graduation from medical school and taking a dermatology research year to increase the competitiveness of their dermatology residency application.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Upcoming Scoring Change For USMLE Step 1

Today the Invitational Conference on USMLE Scoring (INCUS) released their decision after a months-long deliberation examining scoring methods for Step 1 of the USMLE. Step 1 will no longer have a three digit score, and will instead show only a pass/fail designation. Scoring for the other USMLE Step exams will not be changing. The exact details on how this transition will occur is not yet available; however this change will not occur any earlier than January 1st 2022. The final decision put out today by the INCUS can be read here: https://www.usmle.org/incus/#decision

Monday, February 10, 2020

UTMB DIG Hosts Dermatology Advising Meeting for Rising 4th Years

On Monday February 10th UTMB DIG met with current third year medical students planning on applying to dermatology residency. Many topics were covered including: planning 4th year classes, scheduling Step 2 CS and CK, applying for away rotations, acquiring letters of recommendation, and coming up with alternative plans in the case of a failure to match. UTMB Dermatology program director Dr. Richard Wagner was present to answer questions and provide advice as well as several current fourth year medical students who were able to speak to the process as well. Participants had a chance to ask any other questions they might have had and were put in contact with upperclassmen who could provide mentoring!

UTMB Dermatology Faculty Elected to Small Departments representative at-large to the Faculty Group Practice (FGP) Clinical Operations Committee

Congratulations Dr. Erica Kelly!

Friday, February 07, 2020

Time to Get Ready for Spring Texas Dermatological Society (TDS)

The spring TDS meeting will be held at the Renaissance Dallas Plano Legacy West on April 17-18, 2020. Applications for poster and podium presentations are being accepted through Friday, March 20th. Abstracts and poster PDFs are due by Friday, March 27th. The meeting registration deadline for all first authors is April 8th. Only first author residents and fellows are eligible for poster and podium awards.

Thursday, February 06, 2020

Upcoming Melanoma Walk

The UTMB Dermatology Interest Group is hosting the annual Steps Against Melanoma 5K Walk and Fun Run to help raise melanoma awareness and support melanoma research.

Date: Saturday, April 18th
Time: Registration at 7:30 AM; Walk/Run begins at 8:00 AM
Walk/Run Location: Galveston Seawall (near the Wing’s on Seawall Blvd)
Additional Info: The registration fee is only $10. Participants raising $50 or more will receive a free T-shirt.
To Register and/or Donate: https://support.aimatmelanoma.org/event/steps-against-melanoma-galveston-2020/e265060

***If you are interested in volunteering, please sign up using the following link: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1pk1PMuu9N13FQDtVHCBRoEQB1TTITRczsBM0WY0Ngr8/edit#gid=0

Questions? Contact Caroline Crain (cbcrain@utmb.edu) or Corley Pruneda (ccpruned@utmb.edu).

Tuesday, February 04, 2020

A Star is Born!

Congratulations to Dr. Kristyna Gleghorn, a current PGY3 dermatology resident at UTMB. She recently published her original research, “And the Award
Goes to: A review of the Academy Awards Winning Best Pictures featuring skin conditions” in the peer-reviewed publication, International Journal of Dermatology as an “Early View” (doi:10.1111/ijd.14795). Her coauthors are former UTMB dermatology resident, Drs. Will Tausend (private practice, Pasadena, Texas), Vail Reese (private practice, San Francisco, California), and Richard Wagner (Professor of Dermatology and Program Director, UTMB, Galveston). Her article heralds the 92nd Academy Awards on Sunday, February 9, 2020!

DIG Suture and Dermatology Procedure Workshop Was a Great Success!

Thank you to everyone involved in making the annual Suture and Dermatology Procedure Workshop a success! The event took place on Monday 2/3/20 and was attended by 10 1st and 2nd year medical students. UTMB DIG would like to thank Dr. Richard Wagner (UTMB Dermatology Faculty and Program Director), Dr. Adam Nguyen (PGY-4 Dermatology Resident) and Dr. Frank Winsett (PGY-3 Dermatology Resident) who volunteered their time to teach the students how to perform shave and punch biopsies as well as a variety of suturing techniques. Special thanks also goes out to Michael Ryan (MS4) for organizing and coordinating the event. UTMB DIG was very pleased with the turnout and hopes that the participants learned valuable skills that they can utilize in their clinical rotations and volunteering. 

Sunday, January 26, 2020

St. Vincent's Student Clinic Dermatology Night 2/6/20

Join UTMB Dermatology faculty and residents for the upcoming dermatology night at St. Vincent’s Clinic. Please see the calendar link below to reserve your volunteering spot.

When: Thursday, February 6th at 5:30-8:30PM (volunteers should arrive at 5:15)
Where: St. Vincent's House, 2817 Post Office Street, Galveston, Texas 77550

Volunteer link: http://stvsc.org/index.php/students/sign-up

Thursday, January 23, 2020

UTMB “Revitalizes” Electives and Selectives for 2020-2021 Academic Year

UTMB continues its innovative curriculum by changing MS3 and MS4 electives and Selectives to 3 weeks during the upcoming 2020-2021 academic year (they had previously been either 2 or 4 week duration). This change will increase the total number of Periods at UTMB from 13 to 17. It will permit upper level UTMB medical students to take more electives, but it could cause issues with scheduling away rotations because most of them are 2 or 4 weeks in duration. It is also possible that UTMB will require a “pre-PGY1” rotation around the NRMP Match to prepare our students for their first PGY year of residency.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

ACGME Continues Accreditation for all 3 UTMB Dermatology Department Residency and Fellowship Programs

Congratulations to the UTMB Department of Dermatology for receiving continued ACGME accreditation for all three of its residency and fellowship programs: Dermatology, Dermatopathology, and Micrographic Surgery and Dermatologic Oncology (Mohs).

Friday, January 17, 2020

Dermatology Scheduling Advice for UTMB Medical Students

UTMB Dermatology encourages our medical students to learn about dermatology throughout medical school, starting in the first year. Here is the outline of the available opportunities currently available and the timeline for those who are seriously thinking about a dermatology career:

First Year

1. Sign up for the UTMB Dermatology Interest Group (DIG) during orientation. Joining this student organization will put you in contact with other dermatology-minded medical students in your own class and upper level students. You will learn more about dermatology research opportunities, dermatology-related community service, and leadership positions in the DIG. Early during the first year the DIG conducts a meeting to discuss dermatology opportunities at UTMB and the Dermatology Program Director is available to answer questions. The DIG also conducts a suture workshop in the second half of the first year, and DIG members have priority (space is limited). The UTMB DIG has a blog that has been continuously published since 2004 and is a treasure trove about UTMB Dermatology activities ( digutmb.blogspot.com )

2. Sign up for the St. Vincent’s dermatology clinic that is held the first Thursday of every month. You will take care of unfunded patients with skin diseases and be supervised by current UTMB dermatology residents and faculty. It is a good way to learn more about the UTMB Dermatology Department.

3.There are unfunded preclinical dermatology preceptorship rotations (DERU-1050) of 4 week duration for first year medical students during the months of May and June.  Four students may participate each month. UTMB holds a meeting in January each year to let first year medical students know about summer clinical and research opportunities, and immediately after the meeting you will be able to sign up for what interests you. All students interested in the preclinical dermatology preceptorship will be randomly selected for preceptorship positions. During this preclinical rotation you work in the UTMB dermatology clinics along with the dermatology residents and faculty, and attend dermatology conferences. You will also receive graduation credit for this elective. This is where most first year medical students have the first opportunity to collaborate with dermatology residents and faculty on poster presentations for the fall meeting of the Texas Dermatological Society and other conferences. This is an early start for your dermatology research experiences.

4. UTMB also offers bench research opportunities for first year medical students through its Medical Student Summer Research Program ( https://researchexperts.utmb.edu/en/publications/the-medical-student-summer-research-program-at-the-university-of- )Stipends are typically provided. Participants present their research at a poster conference on campus where awards are given. Although the UTMB Department of Dermatology does not currently conduct bench research in the department, other labs on campus are investigating dermatology related topics.

5. If you have a dermatology research project in mind and have identified a faculty mentor, you should consider participating in the UTMB Dermatology Honors Research Program. Successful completion of the program (thesis defense) will result in Latin research honors at graduation. You also receive BSHS Selective credit upon successful completion of the program if you register for DERU-4004 during your MS4 year. Most students who participated in this program published their thesis in a peer-reviewed dermatology journal as the first author and they are dermatologists now. For more information see https://escholarship.org/uc/item/6471z2jq The new faculty in charge of this UTMB program is Bret T. Howrey, PhD (Family Medicine).

6. Medical students also have the chance to help current dermatology residents with their scholarly project, a graduation requirement for the UTMB Dermatology Residency Program (see https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3726645/ ). Completed projects are usually presented at the spring Texas Dermatological Society meeting, and some are published. You be given credit as a author of this work if you contribute to this work.

7. Work hard in all of your courses. Even though UTMB is now pass/fail, your performance will still be considered for Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) membership in the MS3 and MS4 years. The more you learn during the first year of medical school, the better you will do on Step 1 at the end of your second year.

Second Year

1. Continue participating in DIG meetings and activities (it is never too late to join if you have just become interested in dermatology)

2. Continue to attend St. Vincent’s dermatology clinic on the first Thursday of each month (it is never too late to start going)

3. Continue working with residents and faculty on presentations for the Texas Dermatological Society fall and spring meetings (and other dermatology meetings)

4. During POM2, all second year medical students will be assigned to one dermatology clinic. If your POM2 faculty is a dermatologist, you will have a second chance to go to dermatology clinic as your “wild card” clinical experience.

5. Continue helping current dermatology residents with their scholarly projects.

6. Consider taking a research year at the end of MS2. A dermatology research year should improve your application due to additional research activity that lead to presentations at national meetings and peer-reviewed publications, making your dermatology residency application more competitive. Downsides are that they are not usually paid, not offered at all medical schools, do not guarantee a dermatology residency match, and delay graduation.

7. Take Step 1 preparation seriously and study hard to do the best you can.

Third Year

1. Continue participating in DIG meetings and activities (it is never too late to join if you have just become interested in dermatology)

2. Continue to attend St. Vincent’s dermatology clinic on the first Thursday of each month (it is never too late to start going)

3. Continue working with residents and faculty on presentations for the Texas Dermatological Society fall and spring meetings (and other dermatology meetings)

4. During the 3rd year, you will have two opportunities to take dermatology electives. UTMB Dermatology offers more dermatology electives than most other programs. In your third year schedule, you will have the opportunity to take a 4 week dermatology elective. In addition, you may also take a 4 week dermatology electives during Period 13 (holiday period). Period 13 dermatology electives fill up fast, so if the student quota is full, ask to be placed on the waiting list. Electives offered are described here: http://ar.utmb.edu/SOM/Electives/blist.asp?dc=der

5. Start planning your away dermatology rotations through VSAS ( https://apps.aamc.org/vsas/public.html#/find-electives ) . An application is required and away rotation spots fill up fast, so you should consider applying to several programs for each Period that you want to be away from Galveston. Away rotations are very important for successful matching in dermatology. Over half of dermatology matches occur at the applicant’s home program or at a program where the applicant has rotated. The best times to rotate are from the end of MS3 until the end of October. Good places to rotate are institutions where students from your school have matched in the recent past. It is also better if the away rotation takes 4 or more residents each year. If you have a legitimate geographic or personal ties to the away rotation site that is a plus (programs think you may be more interested in going there).  Beware of programs that accept lots of rotators but do not interview all of them (you still may want to rotate there for a variety of reasons, but don’t go there if you are counting on an interview with them). It is debatable if a 2 week rotation (some of these are available) is as valuable as a 4 week rotation in terms of chances for a match at that program. If you are accepted to more than one program, be courteous and decline the rotation right away.

6. Consider taking a research year at the end of MS3. This may be a serious consideration if the applicant has just recently become interested in dermatology but has no dermatology research. A dermatology research year should improve your application due to additional research activity that lead to presentations at national meetings and peer-reviewed publications. Downsides are that they are not usually paid, not offered at all medical schools, do not guarantee a dermatology match, and delay graduation.

7. Although it is not absolutely necessary to take Step 2 CK and CS at the end of the second year, a growing trend is for institutions to require these tests in order to place you on the NRMP match list. It is better to study hard for these exams and get them out of the way early (Step 2 CK is usually higher than Step 1, so it also helps the applicant)

Fourth Year

1. Continue participating in DIG meetings and activities (it is never too late to join if you have just become interested in dermatology)

2. Continue to attend St. Vincent’s dermatology clinic on the first Thursday of each month (it is never too late to start going)

3. Continue working with residents and faculty on presentations for the Texas Dermatological Society fall and spring meetings (and other dermatology meetings)

4. UTMB requires an Acting Internship (AI) for graduation, and fortunately UTMB Dermatology offers one of the few dermatology AIs in the country (see  https://escholarship.org/uc/item/63d8j499 ) It is best to take this early in the MS4 year so that you already have the skills and knowledge to impress faculty at your away rotations!

5. ERAS opens in September of your senior year. Everything should be ready to go on the first day (including letters of recommendation from dermatology faculty). That is because most dermatology positions are offered as advanced positions (dermatology residency does not begin until the applicant has completed a PGY1 year in an accepted clinical specialty such as pediatrics, internal medicine, family medicine, surgery, obstetrics/gynecology, emergency medicine, or a transitional year. Taking a PGY1 year in any of these programs starts the Medicare Funding Clock.  This often becomes a funding issue if the dermatology applicant does not match into a dermatology advanced position at the time of the PGY1 match. Dermatology requires 4 years of residency (PGY1 + PGY2, 3, and 4 in dermatology), and Medicare starts the residency funding clock running at the time of the initial match. Since Medicare funding is only 3 years for pediatrics, internal medicine, family medicine, and emergency medicine, if an advanced dermatology position match does not occur at the same time, those reapplying to dermatology have one year of residency that is not completely funded by Medicare. Some institutions are unable to fund this additional year, and are not able to consider taking an applicant under these circumstances. However, if the applicant takes a PGY1 year in surgery (5 years of funding) or in obstetrics/gynecology (4 years of funding), complete Medicare funding is available if the surgery resident did not spend more than 2 years in the surgery residency or if the obstetrics/gynecology resident did not spend more than 1 year in the program. If the applicant matches into a transitional PGY1 year and does not match into dermatology right away, there is no Medicare penalty since the transitional year does not start the funding clock. Transitional and preliminary program interviews in all of these residency programs fill fast, so early application is advantageous. Applicants will usually start going to these interviews as early as September. Dermatology residency applications typically occur much later, with some as early as November. However, the vast majority of dermatology interviews occur in January, so it is wise to take vacation that month or take a didactic elective or BSHS Selective where presence on campus is not required. UTMB Dermatology offers 4 didactic electives (DERU-4007, DERU-4008, DERU-4011, DERU-4017; see http://ar.utmb.edu/SOM/Electives/blist.asp?dc=der )  and 3 didactic Selectives (DERU-4012, DERU-4051, and DERU-4402), that include the option of teleconferencing or make-up written assignments for each class meeting if you are away for interviews (see http://ar.utmb.edu/BSHSselectives/brochure.asp?dc=der ) . A BSHS Selective, a writing requirement is required by UTMB for graduation. Try not to be in a situation when you cannot go to interviews because you are on a rotation that only permits two absences! The more interviews you go to , the better your chances for a dermatology match. 

  • As mentioned, advanced residency positions are the most common type of dermatology residencies. There are also a few categorical dermatology residency programs where the applicant spends 4 years training at a dermatology residency in the same institution that includes the PGY1 year. In addition there are combined dermatology/internal medicine and combined dermatology/pediatric residency programs that are 5 years long (2.5 years of dermatology and 2.5 years of internal medicine or pediatrics with completing residents eligible for board certification in both specialties) which also includes the PGY1 year.

6. Some applicants who like dermatology and a different specialty make dual applications to both. This can be difficult due to time restraints for several audition rotations in two different specialties. Other issues are obtaining letters of recommendation from two sets of physicians. Some of these applicants do not to apply to both departments in the same institution. If discovered, applying to two different specialties may indicate lack of applicant commitment to both of them. Sadly, some applicants who match into their backup specialty still want to become dermatologists and are later unhappy with this choice.

7. Match day is held in mid-March. That is when you find out if you matched into a dermatology residency and where you will be going for the PGY1 year. Dermatology has some categorical dermatology programs (where you do the PGY1, 2, 3, and 4 years at the same institution), but they are relatively rare. If you have not matched into dermatology (it is a very competitive match), it is still possible to become a dermatologist, but it is a path best taken by applicants who are very committed to a dermatology career, because success is not a guarantee. There are three main ways this is accomplished:
  1. At the end of the PGY1 year and successful completion of Step 3, begin a dermatology clinical fellowship. These are not accredited by the ACGME and do not count toward the required 3 years of dermatology residency. Typically the fellow conducts clinical research under the supervision of the clinical investigator, resulting in meeting presentations and publications. Quality of these fellowships and reapplication success vary. It is bests to work with a mentor who has a good track record of helping the fellow successfully match at that institution or other dermatology departments. There are no guarantees of a dermatology residency match. Fellows may stay at the same institution for several years before matching, or may try switching to different clinical dermatology fellowships at different places. Fellows often work with dermatology residents, and learn lots about dermatology while in the fellowship, often becoming expert in clinical research and new drug therapy for skin diseases.
  1. Stay at medical school another year (“super senior”) if you have not matched into a PGY1 program and have not yet completed all graduation requirements (Some applicants send in their NRMP match list with the contingency that they don’t want to match into a PGY1 position if they fail to match into dermatology, although matching into a PGY1 transitional year in this circumstance will allow the applicant to apply for a dermatology clinical fellowship since a medical license is needed for most of these. In addition, if the re-applicant is a PGY1 transitional physician, there is always the chance that additional positions will open during the current academic year in the “Physician Only” track that the PGY1 transitional could obtain). Some schools permit you to stay for an additional degree (MS, MBA) and you can use that time to take additional away rotations and conduct dermatology research. This could increase the quality of your application, although it will only be about 5 months before you will need to submit another ERAS application.
  2. Another strategy is to become board certified in a different specialty first before reapplying to dermatology. This strategy relies on the future needs of specific dermatology residency programs. Even though Medicare funding has been exhausted, new departments may be in need of physicians who will be able to immediately provided needed clinical skills to care for dermatology patients. High demand physicians are board-certified in pediatrics, internal medicine, surgery, or dermatopathology (initial pathology residency). The pathology trained dermatopathologist will also need to take a PGY1 year in one of the required clinical specialties before starting dermatology residency, because the pathology residency does not meet the clinical requirement for dermatology.
8. UTMB still requires all students take neurology and emergency department electives prior to graduation. The best time to take these is during Periods 8, 9, 10, or 11.

DIG Meeting for Rising 3rd and 4th Year Students (2/10/2020)

UTMB DIG will hold a meeting on Monday, February 10th to discuss 4th year schedule planning for UTMB medical students applying to dermatology residencies. The meeting will be held in the 5th floor Dermatology conference room (5.124) at 5 pm. UTMB Dermatology Program Director Dr. Wagner will be present and we will cover logistics of fourth year scheduling, away rotations, and the residency application process. This meeting will also be open to more junior students to discuss scheduling and dermatology electives. 

DIG Suture and Procedure Workshop (2/3/2020)

UTMB DIG will be hosting its annual Suture and Procedure Workshop on February 3rd at 5pm in the 4th floor Dermatology Conference room (4.130 McCullough Bldg). Seats are limited so please only RSVP if you are certain you can make it. Preference will be given to first and second year medical students. Please use this link to sign up: https://forms.gle/zyckWmZ2eijw4YKe9 Confirmation or wait-list emails will be sent out 1 week in advance. 

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Mohs Match Remains Highly Competitive

Data from the December 2019 Mohs Match for Fellowship positions starting in July 2020 indicate that the 70 participating programs offered 82 positions, and filled 81 of them. 141 applicants participated in the match, so the match rate was about 57% (81/141).

Saturday, December 28, 2019

UTMB Medical Student Publishes in JAAD Case Reports

Congratulations to Michael Ryan (MS4) for his recently published report "A telangiectatic nodule on the anterior shin" in JAAD Case Reports. This article was published under the "Images in Dermatology" section which allows for interesting cases to be presented in a clinical vignette format along with three multiple choice questions that are used to inform the reader about the topic at hand. The article can be found online at: https://www.jaadcasereports.org/article/S2352-5126(19)30555-7/fulltext#gr1 Can you figure out the Diagnosis?

Michael's co-authors are Drs. Seena Monjazeb (PGY-3 Dermatology Resident), Brandon Goodwin (Dermatology and Dermatopathology Faculty) and Kathleen Kroger (Dermatology Faculty). Congratulations to everyone on a job well done!

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Applying to Multiple Specialties

Although probably too late for the current ERAS cycle, The Journal of Emergency Medicine offers sound advice and analysis for applicants considering applications to more than one specialty. Residency positions in emergency medicine have become much more competitive of late, akin to dermatology. More on this may be found at https://www.jem-journal.com/article/S0736-4679(19)30429-9/fulltext

Monday, December 23, 2019

Thoughts on Reducing the Cost for Dermatology Residency Applications

The December 2019 issue of Cutis (104;6:352-353) has an interesting Commentary about of some aspects of the dermatology application process from Dr. Aamir Hussain titled, “Reducing the Cost of Dermatology Residency Applications: An Applicant’s Perspective.” Some ideas for reducing the costs of dermatology residency applicants include the establishment of regional interviews (dermatology residency programs in the same geographic region would agree to interview in a timeframe that would allow applicants with multiple interviews in the same region to travel to that region only once and avoid the costs of multiple flights and other travel related inconveniences), and different regions would coordinate so that there were no competing regions interviewing at the same time). Capping the number of applications was also discussed, either by a “hard cap” (limiting the number of programs an applicant may apply to) or through imposition of an economic disincentive by charging higher application fees for applying to more programs than diminishing returns would suggest.

However, no mechanism for establishing a “hard cap” on the number of applications is suggested, and this strategy seems a bit unusual (most job openings do not place a limit on the number of applications they will review before selecting several candidates for interviews). The author does concede that placing a financial disincentive on additional applications above a certain number could favor more affluent applicants. However, several other approaches have the potential to decrease costs in the dermatology application process. Programs could opt to use Skype or telephone interviews instead of on-site visits, saving applicants travel costs. Rotators and home students could be interviewed during their dermatology rotations, a step that would eliminate a return visit for interview. Policy change at the NRMP that allowed programs to offer dermatology residency positions outside of the match would also decrease program need to interview additional applicants since the position would already be filled. Applicants may be able to limit applications if they had greater information about specific programs (how many residency positions are filled with internal applicants and rotators, how many of the current residents went to medical school outside of the region, how many of the current residents were AOA, what are the mean and range of the current resident Step scores, how many of the residents have additional degrees (MA, MS, MBA, MPH, PhD), etc.

Friday, December 20, 2019

2020 Annual Steps Against Melanoma Walk

UTMB DIG is planning to participate in the 15th Annual Steps Against Melanoma Walk to be held on the Galveston Seawall on Saturday, April 18, 2020 starting at 7 am. More information to follow. Please join us in this worthwhile fundraising event.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

St. Vincent's Student Clinic Dermatology Night 1/16/19 (New Date)

Join UTMB Dermatology faculty and residents for the upcoming dermatology night at St. Vincent’s Clinic. 

Please note that this is not the typical 1st Thursday of the month; Dermatology Night has been pushed later in the month due to the holiday schedule.

Please see the calendar link below to reserve your volunteering spot.

When: Thursday, January 16th at 5:30-8:30PM (volunteers should arrive at 5:15)
Where: St. Vincent's House, 2817 Post Office Street, Galveston, Texas 77550

Volunteer link: http://stvsc.org/index.php/students/sign-up

Sunday, December 15, 2019

Happy Holidays from UTMB

Dr. Sharon Raimer (UTMB Professor of Dermatology and former Department Chair) is in the center of this holiday photo with UTMB medical students, staff, and faculty, alongside her husband, Dr. Ben Raimer, President ad interim of UTMB. The group is photographed in front of the new Medical Education Center on campus.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Former UTMB Medical Student Returning to UTMB for Dermatopathology Fellowship

UTMB DIG is excited to learn that Dr. Drew DeCrescenzo (UTMB SOM 2017) will return to UTMB Dermatology for dermatopathology fellowship (2021-2022 academic year) once he completes dermatology residency at Baylor Dallas. We look forward to working with you again!

UTMB Mohs Match for 2020-2021 Academic Year Announced

Congratulations to UTMB PGY4 dermatology resident, Dr. Julie Croley for her successful match into the UTMB Department of Dermatology Fellowship in Micrographic Surgery and Dermatologic Oncology for the 2020-2021 academic year. The result was announced by the San Francisco Match.

Monday, December 09, 2019

Should I Rotate at an Away Dermatology Residency Program that does not Interview all Visiting Students?

Good question, one that now comes up regularly as programs that reportedly do not interview all rotators are becoming known. Is it worth rotating (time, money, and the opportunity cost of not being able to rotate at an alternative program where all away rotators are interviewed) when an interview cannot be counted on?  Historically the best chances for a dermatology match occur at an applicant’s home program and at programs where they have rotated and interviewed. Part of the analysis depends on how well the “audition rotation” went. This process benefits the applicant (“Is this a program that I would want to go to?”) and the program (“Is the applicant someone we would like to work with for 3 years?”) It is possible that after a rotation is completed, it is apparent to the program that the rotator would not be a good fit or the rotator decides that this is a residency where they would prefer not to train. Some programs will give interviews to all rotators, regardless of performance. Others will decline, saving the applicant time, money, and the potential opportunity to interview at another program if there is a conflict in interview dates.

UTMB GME Offering Two Separate Orientations for Incoming 2020-2021 House Staff

The two dates for 2020 are:

June 16-20 (2 days of GME Institutional Orientation followed by 2 days of EPIC Training)

July 1-6 (check in on July 1, followed by 2 days of EPIC Training and 1 day of New Employee Orientation on July 6); no orientation on weekend of July 4th and 5th

Time Well Spent

The annual UTMB Dermatopathology Board Review, directed by Dr. Brent Kelly and his colleagues, will be held on Saturday, April 4, 2020 this year. Please plan to attend this informative one day intensive review class that is held on the Galveston campus, especially if the ABD or ABP certification examinations are looming,  or if the new dermatopathology core exam is coming up soon!  It is a good chance to get together with the UTMB dermatopathology review faculty, UTMB residents, Mohs fellow, and Mohs Program Director during breaks and lunch as well (the ABD Certification Examination in Micrographic Surgery is expected to become available in 2021)!