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Fellowship Roadmap

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Finding a fellowship program is considered an almost essential step during the first two years of pathology residency. To simplify this process and help you find the right program, we have established a roadmap with specific questions that you need to ask yourself and issues to keep in mind.

Finding the right program for you:

  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of the program?
  • What is the distribution between research and clinical work?
  • What does the on-call schedules look like?
  • What research topics does the program specialize in (do these correlate with your interests)?
  • How many fellows are there each year?
  • Do they support your current visa status? If not mentioned online, contact the program ahead of time.

The Application Process

  • Timing: Know when each program is accepting applications. Some programs start the process early, while others do not.
  • Apply Early: Do not wait to apply. Programs may decide to offer candidates fellowship positions early, so do not delay.
  • Personal Statement: Read, and re-read, and have someone proofread. Ensure there are no spelling or grammatical errors.
  • Application: Some programs have the standardized CAP application while others have their own. If the program uses the standardized CAP application, contact them beforehand and ask if there are any additional documents required.
  • Letters of Recommendation (LOR): Ask someone you know who will write you a strong recommendation.
  • USMLE scores: Some programs ask for your USMLE scores, have them available.
  • ECFMG Certificate (IMGs only): Some programs ask for your ECFMG certificate, have it available.
  • Medical School Transcripts/Dean’s Letter: Some programs ask for these, have them available.
  • Photograph/Headshot: Be sure you to a current, professional photograph ready.

Following Up

  • Ensure that your documents were received.
  • Follow-up on your LORs to confirm they were received.

Fellowship Offer Extended

  • With no matching process, you may run into a situation whereby you have more than one offer with a limited amount of time to accept or decline.
  • Several factors are important, particularly if none of the offers are from your top choice or you have not received an interview from your top choice yet.
    • Do you accept and be happy or wait?
    • Of course, only you can make this decision but recommend careful evaluation of the programs, your goals, and what factors are most important for you.
  • Always remember to be professional—the programs will undoubtedly have other candidates waiting to hear from them, so communicate promptly with the program directors.

You Accepted an Offer

  • Be happy, goal achieved!
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