If you’re seeking for advice on how to prepare yourself to be the best interviewee ever, I’m the wrong gal. But I did want to share my experience of the incredibly stressful day I experienced recently. I don’t recall having felt so anxious on any other day of my entire existence!
I already knew I was going to feel this way so I planned in advance and scheduled all of my interviews on one day. My thinking was that I would be so tired by the end of it I’d eventually have to crash into bed and finally get some restful sleep. And I might actually wake up with a smile because then I would have been completely done with interviews. It was kind of a perk that all of my rotations were in Michigan and they had interview times for one day. However, that did essentially mean having to see seven programs back to back. What a marathon it was.
How do interviews work for podiatry residency anyway?
Podiatry has a centralized interview where all the programs and students from across the states meet in Frisco, TX for a week. This is different from other professions where students will have separate interviews that could be scattered throughout the year at the different hospital systems. There are pros and cons that will be unique to each student.
Most of the programs I interviewed with were also places I spent a month at for rotations. The ones that made me especially nervous were the ones I only visited for a day. Essentially, we only had 15 minutes to evaluate each other and form an opinion as to whether or not we could work together for the next three years. On the students’ part, the trick was to stand out amongst other high qualifying students and that was just something I didn’t know how to do. So I just ended up being myself. Now that may be either bad or good but at least I can say I was at my best and so I can’t regret being my best, right?
Needless to say, I was so glad to have all the interviews over and done with in one day. How did it go? For the most part, the interview questions were academic, usually they presented a Powerpoint slide and we had to work up the case from start to finish. I felt that little time was spent on learning about the student’s character which bummed me out a bit. I mean we needed to know the basics, of course, and demonstrate competence, but what about the student’s ability to get along with colleagues? What about their moral compass, was that intact? It was such a confusing experience for me, I just couldn’t wrap my head around the whole concept of interviewing this way. I don’t think any other professions do it this way.
Anyhow, I walked away learning a great deal about myself and what I am worth. Overall, I had a great interview experience with some, while not so great with others. That was expected though and I am so happy to have had the privilege to be granted an interview with these highly sought after programs.
If you ever feel bad for doing your best, think about what Eleanor Roosevelt said, “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.”
I hope match day comes real soon.