Tag Archives: med student

FAQ: January 2016

Happy New Year!! I’m so excited to kick off 2016.

Derek and I were reflecting on the past year, and we decided to describe it as our “grind it out” year. Compared to the excitement of 2014, this past year included a lot of hard, and sometimes monotonous-feeling, work. However, we remain very blessed and thankful for another healthy, happy year, and we still managed to have a lot of fun along the way.

It’s been a LONG time since I last blogged, so I thought I’d catch you up by answering some frequently asked questions in the life of the Pinkertons.


FAQ: January 2016

Is Derek a doctor yet? 

Not quite. He’s very close though! In just four months he will graduate from medical school. I am so incredibly proud of him to the point that I can’t even talk about his graduation because there’s a 100% chance I’ll start tearing up. Yes, I am pathetic.

What kind of doctor is he going to be? 

Derek decided that his speciality will be Combined Internal Medicine and Pediatrics. Most people call it Med-Peds for short. He’s actually following in his dad’s footsteps and will be trained to care for both children and adults.

Derek residency photo

Derek’s residency application photo. 

How long is his residency? 

Derek’s residency will be four years. It’s a pretty good deal considering the categorial medicine and pediatrics programs are both 3 years. They basically squash 6 years of learning into 4 for this speciality by doing away with a lot of electives.

Where will you go for his residency? 

We don’t know yet, but we’ll find out on Match Day (March 18th).

What’s Match Day? 

Every year, on the third Friday in March, senior medical students across the country find out where they will be going for residency. At UNC, everyone and their loved ones gather in a large auditorium, and they call students up one at a time and hand them an envelope, which contains the name of their residency match.

Wait, what?? You don’t pick where you go? 

Well, sort of. After Derek goes on all of his interviews (he’s going to 10 places), he will turn in a rank-order list of the programs. The programs will also rank order the applicants. The process is blinded, so neither the applicants nor the programs know the orders submitted.  After the lists are submitted, the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) uses a complex algorithm to “match” applicants to programs based on the rank-order lists.

Tl;dr: our future is ultimately determined by a computer.

Woah, that is crazy.

Yes, yes it is. But it’s also exciting! Everyone once in a while I feel a little overwhelmed by the lack of control, but I remind myself that Derek and I have input, and 80% of applicants get one of their top three choices. I also figure it doesn’t do me any good to worry; instead, I’m usually find myself getting excited about all of the possibilities and opportunities for our future. We also try to remind each other that we’re in it together, which makes it a little less daunting.

Where do you want to go?

We’re not sure yet. In fact, Derek still has one more interview later this month. We probably won’t reveal the exact order, but these are some of his favorite programs (in alphabetical order) thus far:

  • University of Chicago
  • University of Cincinnati
  • Indiana University
  • University of North Carolina
  • University of Rochester

What are you up to? 

I’m still working as an inpatient medicine social worker at a local hospital. It’s hard to believe I’ve been there for 1.5 years already. I finally feel like I know what I’m doing (most days)!

What’s next for you? 

I’ve officially completed 2,220 practice hours and 74 supervision hours towards my license, so I will hopefully beat the clock and get my license before we (possibly) move in June! (FYI: In North Carolina, 3,000 practice hours and 100 supervision hours are required to become a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.)

Once I’ve obtained my license, I’ll be looking to make a change, which is good timing because we might be moving anyway. I’m hoping to stay in medicine but find a position that is more clinical. I’d love to work in hospice or palliative care if possible.

Do you have any New Year’s resolutions?

I have a few goals in mind, actually. I’ll be dedicating a separate post to them though, and I’ll be taking a look at how I did with my goals from last year.

Why I Love Blogging {100th Post}

I was going to write about something else, but then I noticed that this is my 100th post! I started Brown is the New Pink back at the end of April, and it’s crazy to think that I’ve been blogging for almost 6 months already. It’s been a fun, insightful experience thus far, and I’m excited to continue my blogging journey.

Since it is my 100th post, I want to share a few reasons why I love blogging.

  • Blogging is my creative outlet. After I stopped writing papers and developing projects for grad school I realized that I needed to find new ways to be creative. Cooking is definitely my art, but I also missed writing. What better way to combine my love of cooking and writing than through blogging?
  • Brown is the New Pink serves as a journal for me. Like most people in their mid-20s, my life is changing all the time. I think it will be really neat to look back on this blog and see snapshots of my life.
  • Blogging creates another opportunity to connect with people. I’ve corresponded with a few different readers about living in Chapel Hill, social work, wedding planning, and what it’s like to be married to a med student. It’s fun to connect with people who have common interests, especially because it’s unlikely that I would meet them otherwise.
  • Blogging helps me leave work at work. As I’ve mentioned in a few of my Fun Friday posts, I use Brown is the New Pink to separate myself from work. Burnout is common in social work, but finding ways to leave the stress at work makes it less likely to happen to me. My hope is that some of those posts help other people, too.
  • It encourages me to continue learning and sharing what I learn. Researching for social justice posts keeps me updated on issues as well as new, innovative solutions. I’m in a direct practice role at work, so it’s easy to get caught up in the details and forget about the big picture. Brown is the New Pink keeps my macro skills sharp.

Whether you’re a regular reader or you’re stopping by Brown is the New Pink for the first time, thank you for reading! I blog because I enjoy it, but the fact that other people enjoy Brown is the New Pink or learn something from it definitely makes it even better. 🙂

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