The ProspectiveDoctor Podcast

I Didn’t Match. What’s Next? With Dr. Jenny Wang

Dr. Jenny Wang discusses her experience of not matching into dermatology in 2018 and what she did to match the following year.

  • [01:11] Why Dermatology?
  • [02:38] How Research Fellowships Can Help You Stand out More
  • [05:13] Analyzing the 2018 Match Week
  • [10:17] Dissecting a Typical Match Process
  • [14:06] How Students That Don’t Match Cope with The Miss
  • [17:27] The Exciting Parts of Dermatology Residency
  • [20:23] Dr. Wang’s Advice to Pre-Meds and Medical Students

Why Dermatology?

While we might consume a lot of content and cover many topics while in med school, dermatology is one of those topics we practically breeze through. Nonetheless, Dr. Wang still had a passion for the field and found herself gravitating towards the highly competitive field. However, she hit her first roadblock when she joined medical school and realized just how competitive the field is.

Analyzing a Match Week

The unpredictability of match weeks means that even the highly qualified students can miss out on residency spots. In 2018, Dr. Wang was well-positioned to land a residency position in her hospital of choice. When the match results were released some days later, she found that she didn’t match. The outcome caught her off-guard, shattering all her dreams of ever becoming a doctor. She pulled herself up and started a frantic search for opportunities countrywide. Her search landed her a research spot in UC Davis, California, yet she was in New York. The risk did pay off as she soon got a match on her second residency application.

How Students That Don’t Match Cope with The Miss

As earlier mentioned, even students with the best grades and potential to become exceptional doctors miss out on matches. Matches are sometimes sorely dependent on luck, and the fact that there are often more applicants than spots means that not everyone gets lucky. Sadly, not many people talk about the missed opportunities, preferring to deal with them in seclusion. Dr. Wang believes that the only way students can move on or better their odds during future matches is to have courageous conversations about the issue. Not everybody is mentally strong to dust themselves up and not give up.

The Exciting Parts of Dermatology Residency

One reason that might explain why the dermatology field is highly competitive is that their schedules are less hectic compared to other medical areas. Patients mainly seek out-patient services, and doctors still enjoy the weekend off. The flexibility in their schedule creates the perfect work-life balance that most doctors crave for. The other exciting thing about Dermatology is that patients usually come from different age brackets. Most people will also do anything to fix their skin problems, making the doctor’s work a little easy.

Check out Dr. Wang’s blog, TheVibrantMed!

Erkeda DeRouen

Dr. Erkeda DeRouen is a graduate of Hampton University with a B.S. in Biological Sciences, followed by completing medical school at the Boston University School of Medicine. She then completed residency at The University of Maryland Family and Community Medicine Program. After that, she worked at an underserved community health center, and currently is an Associate Medical Director of a telemedicine company. She recently became one of the first 1,000 lifestyle medicine certified physicians in the world! Her areas of interest include: health equity and eliminating health disparities, service of underserved populations, HIV management, transgender care, mentorship, and lifestyle medicine.

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