General Application Tips:
– Apply broadly. On average, fellowship programs take 2-3 fellows per year with some programs taking as few as 1 or as many as 6 fellows per year. Because PEM fellowships are relatively small, it is wise to apply to and interview at many programs so that you have several options when you are submitting your rank order list. Many applicants apply to 6-8 programs.
– Don’t apply to programs in cities where you would not consider living.
– Seek out advice from mentors and colleagues about which programs might be a good fit for you. It is particularly helpful to speak to individuals who have trained at institutions other than your home institution.
– Remember to register for NRMP! It is a separate registration from the ERAS registration.
Letter of Recommendation Tips:
– Ask early! It is generally nice to give your letter writer’s at least a month to write and submit your letter of recommendations.
– It is best to provide your letter writers with a copy of your personal statement and CV.
– It generally takes ERAS several weeks to upload letters of recommendation, even after they are received. During the busiest portion of interview season, it can reportedly take up to 4 weeks for letters to be uploaded.
– Most programs require 3 letters of recommendation but ERAS will generally allow you to upload and submit 4 letters. One of the letters should generally be from your Pediatric Residency Program Director and one should be from a Pediatric Emergency Medicine physician. It is also nice to have a letter from someone outside of PEM, preferably from someone who can speak to your critical care experience (a PICU or NICU attending or a Cardiology or Hematology/ Oncology attending).
– When you fill out your ERAS application, it will put the information that you enter together as a “CV.” However, it is nice to create your own CV even before you begin the ERAS application process to give your letter writers and interviewers.
– Be sure to update your CV with any new information or accomplishments before you start interviewing.
Personal Statement Tips:
– Personal statements should generally be limited to 1 page.
– Personal statements generally do not have a significant impact on the application process unless they are either exceptional or abysmal; however, a poorly written or careless personal statement can negatively impact your application. Make sure to spell check and proofread your personal statement for grammar.
– Personal statements can be used to discuss your eventual career goals or research interests. Many interviewers will use your personal statement as a starting point for interview questions.