Editors



Current Editors: Tim Allen and Keith Wagner



Past Editors: 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, December 31, 2012

UTMB DIG Members Polled About UTMB Dermatology Department Interviews

UTMB currently has medical students located in Austin and other Texas cities during their third year required clinical rotations. Some of these students do not return to Galveston for their MS4 year. Recently, some UTMB MS4 applicants and dermatology faculty reconsidered UTMB's current practice of interviewing all UTMB MS4 applicants at their convenience during December and January. Since it is recommended that applicants meet with all of UTMB's dermatology residents and faculty, more than one trip may be required of UTMB medical students, and this aspect is more inconvenient for applicants who do not reside in Galveston because of the additional travel involved. An alternative way to interview UTMB MS4 students applying for dermatology residency at UTMB is to schedule all applicants to interview on the same day. However, the later method could result in some students having interview conflicts with outside programs and missing the opportunity to interview at an additional program.
 
UTMB DIG officers recently surveyed MS4 DIG members about their opinions on this. The vast majority of UTMB MS4 students applying for dermatology residency prefer the current process because it provides more flexibility for scheduling outside interviews. UTMB MS4 students residing outside of Galveston should be aware the UTMB's dermatology program coordinator will be happy to assist with an interview schedule on a day when most of the UTMB dermatology residents and faculty are in Galveston.

Friday, December 28, 2012

National DIGA Officer Opportunity


The national Dermatology Interest Group Association (DIGA) is now accepting 2013-2014 officer applications.  

To apply, simply download, complete, and email your DIGA officer application, which can be found at: http://www.derminterest.org/Blog/tabid/121/EntryId/20/DIGA-Officer-Applications-are-NOW-OPEN.aspx

The deadline for applying is January 25th, 2013. 

Lindsey Hunter, current UTMB Dermatology PGY-2, and Rebecca Phillips, PGY-2 starting 2013 have represented as DIGA committee chairs.  

Positions available include:
Vice President,
Webmaster,
Treasurer,
Secretary,
Community Service Director,
Professional Societies Liaison,
Residency Interviews Database Director,
Southern Regional Director,
Northeastern Regional Director,
Midwestern Regional Director,
Western Regional Director,
Public Relations/Fundraising Chair,
Curriculum Development Chair,
Sun Protection Chair,
Melanoma Fundraising Chair,
Allied Health Outreach Chair,
Psoriasis Awareness Chair.

Contact Sheila Jalalat at szjalala@utmb.edu with any questions. 


Thursday, December 27, 2012

What Should I Do About Conflicting Dermatology Residency Interviews? A Primer on Match Math

Competitive dermatology applicants often find themselves invited for two or more interviews on the same day. Sadly, some of these applicants don't cancel the interview(s) that they are unable to attend until the day before. Late cancellation makes it difficult for "wait list" applicants to interview due to travel logistics and high cost. Late cancellation may ironically result in matching at a less desired program on their match list!  Remember that in the small universe of applicants receiving conflicting invitations to interview, applicants will typically employ different strategies for creating their rank list. Some will rank programs based on prestige, others will rank programs based on their sense of "fit", and many will base their decision entirely on geographic considerations. Applicants unable to attend an interview who promptly notifiy the program about it in time for that program to invite another applicant may move a competitor away from blocking the path to matching at their first ranked program!

Friday, December 21, 2012

DIG Meeting Recap: Guest Speaker 12-10-12

Ms. Kimberly Cooper, UTMB dermatology residency program coordinator, volunteered to meet with DIG members for a Q&A session last week and provided very helpful information in regards to applying and interviewing for a dermatology residency position.

She stressed the importance of UTMB’s November 1st ERAS deadline because the dermatology residency committee starts reviewing applications the following day. She displayed a computer application that residency programs use to filter out specific application components such as Step 1 scores, AOA status, number of publications, etc. Currently, due to an overwhelming number of applicants, the UTMB cut off score for USMLE Step 1 is 225; however, she mentioned that many scores in their application pool are in the 250-260 range.  UTMB medical students and students from other institutions who take dermatology rotations at UTMB are currently exempted from a specific cutoff score.

Step1 scores and grades are not the only important factors in reviewing dermatology residency applications. Letters of recommendation and research experience are also taken into consideration. Most applicants have an average of 2-3 publications. Although research experience is not required for UTMB dermatology residency, it is highly encouraged because third year residents are required to complete a scholarly project before they complete their residency.

Personal statements do not make or break an application, but provide a way for the applicant to be unique and interesting. Ms. Cooper pointed out that the personal statement could also be used to mention any ties, such as family, to certain geographic regions.

UTMB students have the opportunity to work with faculty members and current residents by taking one of the several dermatology electives and/or an acting internship. This gives students a chance to portray their work ethic, professionalism, and enthusiasm for dermatology.  Students are encouraged to be on time, helpful, enthusiastic and interested.

When reviewing applications, an important factor for faculty and, most importantly, the residents is if the student will “fit” in the program based on their “whole package”. This year UTMB received 350 applications.  Of those, 10 MS4 students from UTMB, 2 current residents from UTMB’s internal medicine program, and 32 applicants from outside institutions were invited for an interview.  There are currently four PGY-2 slots to be filled each year through the NRMP.

At UTMB, each interviewer will have 16 individual interviews with each faculty and resident. Each interview lasts approximately 11-15 minutes. After all of the interview sessions, the faculty and residents meet to create a ranking list for the NRMP.

Thank you Ms. Cooper for your very informative talk and to all of the students that attended!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Disclosing Away Interview Conflicts to Home Program Faculty

UTMB medical students applying for dermatology residencies often have one or more of UTMB’s dermatology faculty mentoring and supporting them through this stressful process. Should medical students voluntarily initiate disclosure about interview conflicts to their home dermatology faculty? Experienced faculty can offer excellent insight and perspective into the interview process, and may be able to offer valuable professional advice. However, do students want their faculty to know where they are receiving interview offers from outside institutions? Interview conflicts typically arise with excellent applicants who are overwhelmed by the positive response they receive from outside dermatology programs. It is not possible to be in three or four places at the same time (or in a constricted time sequence) when competing programs may be thousands of miles apart. Most of our faculty at UTMB are familiar with this type of situation, and are happy to help students make the best scheduling choices. It is unlikely that students diminish their chances for a match at UTMB by disclosing this information to their advisors. The fact that the applicant’s academic potential has been recognized by multiple outside programs is usually a strong indication that the applicant will be successful in the upcoming dermatology match.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Reminder: DIG meeting tonight at 5pm!

Ms. Kimberly Cooper, UTMB dermatology residency program coordinator, has volunteered to meet with DIG members for a Q&A session at our next meeting on Monday, December 10th at 5pm in the Dermatology Conference Room (4.112 McCullough).

Ms. Cooper plans to share her perspective about the dermatology application process with DIG members. This is a great opportunity since Ms. Cooper has had a lot of experience interacting with dermatology applicants each year.  She also anticipates sharing some great tips to students who are applying and interviewing for positions. We will also discuss upcoming DIG events.

Have any questions? Email Sheila Jalalat at szjalala@utmb.edu

Hope to see you all there! 

Friday, December 07, 2012

"Stay Shady" Goes to Austin Middle School

On Monday , November 19, UTMB DIG members Dung Mac (MS1), Julie Amthor (MS1), and Skylar White (MS1) taught approximately 100 fourth graders about the importance of sun safety at Galveston's Austin Middle School.  This fun, interactive presentation is aimed at making kids aware that the sun can damage their skin and inform them how to protect themselves. Thank you to the students of Austin Middle School for being such a great audience, and thanks to our volunteers!


If you are interested in becoming involved in "Stay Shady!" events, please email Alexandra Acosta, kaacosta@utmb.edu.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

Educational Article about UTMB’s Dermatology Novel to Film Course Published

The Journal of Medicine and Movies has published Dr. Richard Wagner’s latest article about teaching medical students through film (Wagner RF. Novel to film adaptation analysis: A new educational approach to dermatology education. J Med Mov 2012;8:139-141). This article is available at http://revistamedicinacine.usal.es/index.php/en/vol8/num4/708 .

Dr. Sharon Raimer Recognized By Super Doctors®

Congratulations to UTMB Dermatology Chair, Dr. Sharon Raimer, who was one of 32 UTMB physicians recognized the Texas Monthly in its December 2012 issue as one of UTMB’s Super Doctors®.

2011 Dermatology Residency Survey Reveals Surprising Results

Drs. Neelam A. Vashi and Jo-Ann Latkowski from the Dermatology Departments at New York University and Boston University School of Medicine, reported on a survey they conducted in 2011 with US dermatology residents (The current state of dermatology training: A national survey of graduating dermatology residents. J Am Acad Dermatol 2012;67:1384-1385) in a research letter published in the December 2012 issue of Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. Vashi and Latkowski found that while more than 50% of respondents were comfortable prescribing medicines requiring followup laboratory tests, prescribing biologics, phototherapy, and simple excisions, less than half were comfortable with infusions, flaps, grafts, and Mohs. These results are surprising because of recent emphasis on surgical aspects of dermatology. However, the authors note that, “Our study is limited by a low response rate, which may affect the generalizability of the results.”

Guest Speaker: Next DIG Meeting 12/10/15 at 5pm

Ms. Kimberly Cooper, UTMB dermatology residency program coordinator, has volunteered to meet with DIG members for a Q&A session at our next meeting on Monday, December 10th at 5pm in the Dermatology Conference Room (4.112 McCullough).

Ms. Cooper plans to share her perspective about the dermatology application process with DIG members. This is a great opportunity since Ms. Cooper has had a lot of experience interacting with dermatology applicants each year.  She also anticipates sharing some great tips to students who are applying and interviewing for positions. We will also discuss upcoming DIG events.

Have any questions? Email Sheila Jalalat at szjalala@utmb.edu

Hope to see you all there!