Tag Archives: Aline Sandouk

Married Applicants: What Do Schools Think?

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Applying to med school together might be easier than couples think

TL;DR

  • Married couples applying to a school together are really a bonus for schools, all other factors being equal.
  • We discuss Niki Minaj’s cousin’s friend’s testicles. Because that’s a thing we do now.
  • Wiki How has interesting illustrations–can we guess the article?

This episode is sponsored by Enso Rings, makers of soft, safe, attractive silicone rings. Listeners get 10% off rings at EnsoRings.com using promo code SHORT!

Taylor and his wife are going to apply to Ivy League med school Brown University together. But they’re worried that it’s a lot to expect that schools will accept both of them as a package deal. But we think it might not be as difficult for schools to do as Taylor might assume. MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, M2 Elvire Nguepnang, M1 Noah Wick, and M4 Mackenzie Walhof–along with our admissions director–have some encouraging thoughts for those looking to start their journey as a couple.

Also, we talk about Niki Minaj’s cousin’s friend’s testicles, the CDC’s approval of booster shots for Pfizer (and it’s director’s unilateral decision to include frontline workers as eligible), and Dave quizzes the crew to see if they can figure out what the Wiki How article is based on some accompanying illustrations.

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How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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How to Find a Non-Trad Friendly School

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What to look at when shopping for schools to apply to when you aren’t like other students

TL;DR

  • We discuss with a listener how to find a school that is friendly to non-traditional students.
  • Bringing wooly mammoths back to life?
  • Is talking about people who engage in questionable COVID treatments just adding to the problem?

This episode is sponsored by Enso Rings, makers of soft, safe, attractive silicone rings. Listeners get 10% off rings at EnsoRings.com using promo code SHORT!

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Dave invited listener Brenna on the show to ask her question–as a decidedly non-traditional applicant to medical schools, how can she go about finding schools that will be open to her application? And what can she expect from those schools socially–will she be so different from her classmates that she isn’t able to find her people? MD/PhD students Aline Sandouk, Miranda Schene, Riley Behan, and M2 Sarah Costello have the answers!

We also discuss some special news items this week, like the startup that wants to CRISPr up some woolly mammoth/elephant hybrids to roam the tundra, the hospital that wants to use med students to fill in for their nursing shortage, and the people now (allegedly?) sipping betadine to prevent COVID.

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How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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5 Med School Application Mistakes Everyone Makes, and How to Crush Them Under Your Feet Like Worms

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Screw these up, and you may not get in!

TL;DR

  • Our expert looks at the mistakes that can keep you from landing your spot in med school
  • Give the admissions committee what it needs to assure them you want this more than anything, and that you’ve done your homework.
  • When is the right time to apply? When YOU are ready. Don’t rush it, because whether you’re successful or not in finishing med school, a bad decision will affect you for many, many years.

You’ve got the grades, you’ve got the activities, and you’ve got the drive. You’re ready to apply to medical school, right? Not if you haven’t squashed these critical errors in your application. Get these wrong, and you’ll be applying again next year. Get them right, and they can even turn a mediocre applicant into a desirable one.

Our Admissions and Enrollment Coordinator Rachel Ahearn joins MD/PhD students Aline Sandouk and Riley Behan, and M2s Rick Gardner and Sarah Costello to help you smash these problems under your heel.

Also, Rachel helps us answer listener Morgan’s question about post-bacc programs and damage control.

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How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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Ask Your doctor if COVID is Right For You.

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As COVID numbers tick up, we choose to drown our sorrows in French/Korean fusion baked goods.

TL;DR

  • Dave picks his co-hosts’ brains on how they interpret the latest numbers on COVID
  • We eat baked goods that AJ brought us and try to guess what’s in them, and fail because they’re deliciously unlike anything we’ve had before.
  • We play Out of the Loop.

NOTE: this episode was recorded a few weeks back–some of the COVID numbers referred to are out of date, but the discussion is still valid.

Dave’s growing concerned about the recent uptick in COVID numbers, but like most non-epidemiologists, he isn’t quite sure what exactly they mean. So he brings it to the closest people he has to doctors to talk about it with on a Friday afternoon, his medical student co-hosts. MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, M2 AJ Chowdhury, M2 Nicole Hines, and M2 Sarah Costello help him process.

To help that bitter pill go down, AJ brought some sweet tasty pastries all the way from Shilla Bakery in the Washington DC area. They aren’t a sponsor, we just really enjoyed their Korean/European fusion baked goods! Folks with misophonia, Nicole says sorry for her chewing noises.

And we play a game of Out of the Loop.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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The Coming Physician Exodus: Why Doctors May Leave the Profession Soon

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COVID taught many employees what their employees think of them. Doctors are no different.

TL;DR

  • Most people don’t see themselves as partners in success, but as hired hands. Doctors are employees, too, and have similar issues with their employers!
  • 30% of administrators reported losing physicians during the pandemic. Either an exit from healthcare or a mass shift of physicians from low-engagement jobs to higher engagement positions may have already begun.
  • We discuss what a great job for a doctor might look like.

In this episode future physicians M2 Nicole Hines, and MD/PhD students Miranda Schene, Aline Sandouk and newcomer Riley Behan are on hand to talk about “employee engagement,” the idea that workers–and physicians are workers, remember–feel best utilized and appreciated when they are partners rather than cogs in the success of their employers.

And while many physicians have experienced job dissatisfaction and burnout, COVID seems to have taught some docs that they no longer have to put up with that. As employers of all kinds struggle to bring disengaged workers back to their dissatisfying, low-paying jobs, a white paper from a physician recruiter ominously suggests that doctors are also re-thinking their work as employees.

With that in mind, Dave asks his co-hosts what, for them, might be the features of a job that they could feel engaged with, like a partner in success?

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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Awesome, More application Hoops!

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Get ready for new application requirements (and to pay more money?)

TL;DR

  • CASPer seeks to help schools understand applicants’ non-academic and people skills. It’s never been validated, but more and more schools are using it.
  • Some residency programs have begun using ‘supplemental questions’ as so-called objective measures like STEP 1 and STEP 2 CS fall away.
  • Are these new hurdles useful? Or do they add to the burden of becoming a doctor for no reason?

Dave had never heard of CASPer before (Iowa doesn’t currently use it), so he was surprised to hear that a bunch of schools–and more all the time–are using it to outsource their judgements of applicants’ so-called ‘soft’ skills like ethics and collaboration. However, there are reasons to doubt CASPer’s utility, including that it’s not clear it’s actually measuring these things. And while it costs students a small amount per school (‘small’ being a relative term, especially if the student is cash-strapped), what does it cost the schools who use it and how much of that gets passed on in tuition?

And in their never-ending quest to find the ‘best’ applicants, residency programs are finding new ways to evaluate them, such as requiring answers to ‘supplemental’ questions that sound an awful lot like a secondary application. And the part that includes signaling the applicant’s program preference seems a wee bit suspicious to Dave, MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, M2 Nicole Hines, M2 AJ Chowdhury, and M4 Mackenzie Walhof.

And is Britney Spears being subject to reproductive coercion by her conservators?

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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WHAT Are They REALLY LOOKING FOR IN YOUR PERSONAL STATEMENT? Top Tips from our Expert

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Hint: it’s NOT a dramatic, ‘lightbulb’ moment.

TL;DR

  • Your med school application won’t be the last time you write a personal statement. They’re everywhere in medicine, so keep track of experiences you can write about when you need to.
  • Be careful about thinking too much about strategy, sacrificing the ‘personal’ part. It’s pretty easy to spot someone who isn’t writing with feeling.
  • Very few people can honestly write about a lightbulb moment when they suddenly knew what they wanted, so don’t bother.

Dave works in the Writing and Humanities Program with Director Cate Dicharry, MFA. Among her jobs is to assist medical students in writing their personal statements for residency applications, and she’s been deep in the weeds on that topic since partway through last semester. So Dave asked her to be on the show to give her top tips to both pre-meds and med students in crafting a statement that will grab their school’s or program’s attention. Joining us in the co-hosts’ seats are M4 Emma Barr, MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, M2 Sarah Costello, and M2 AJ Chowdhury.

We also discuss how medical school curricula are evolving to incorporate more of the humanities into medical education. And Dave continues his weird interest in taking sweet foods and making them savory, this time offering up three ice cream flavors he and his wife made.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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Life Hacks for Med Students

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Med school life hacks are all about maximizing efficiency, minimizing friction.

TL;DR

  • Eliminate unnecessary friction to the completion of a task
  • Paying others to do other life tasks can be helpful
  • Saying no is as important as maximizing efficiency.

Today we explore the things that med students do to maximize their efficiency. These are the small steps they take to eliminate friction to completing chores, focusing attention where it’s needed instead of where your brain wants it to be, and eliminating those tasks that just aren’t that important to them. M4 Mackenzie Walhof, MD/PhD student Aline Sandouk, M2 Nicole Hines, and M2 AJ Chowdhury explore with Dave their own personal life hacks.

Also, Dave ran famous doctors’ photos multiple times through an app that makes caricatures until they were no longer recognizable, then made videos of the progression. How fast can the crew identify them when the video is reversed? Play along at home on our Instagram.

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How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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Urology is about more than penises and prostates, ft. Men’s Health Doc Amy Pearlman, MD

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Serving Your Patients Shouldn’t Just Happen in the Office

TL;DR

  • Urologist Amy Pearlman has built her practice upon the opportunities offered by YouTube, Twitter, and Tik Tok.
  • The one question no one asks themselves that can help you decide on your future specialty: what can’t you live without?
  • Medical school does not teach you how to be a doctor. That’s what residency and fellowships are for.
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Dr. Amy Pearlman is a urologist who operates a men’s health clinic at the University of Iowa. Co-hosts AJ Chowdhury (M1) and Aline Sandouk (MD/PhD) suggested her as a guest on the show, and boy is he glad he listened. Dr. Pearlman has so much to offer students on everything from offering patients value before they even arrive for their in-office visit, picking a specialty, and why men need a provider that focuses on their needs just as women do.

AJ and Aline join M3 Mason LaMarche and M4 Zach Tully for a fantastic conversation with Dr. Pearlman that could change the way you think about your future medical career.

Also, Dave keeps reading about a humanity-extinguishing sperm count “crisis.” But The New York Times reports on new research that suggests the crisis is non-existent.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

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When Life Is Getting In the Way of Med School: the Value of the Tactical Retreat.

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Save Your Resources to Fight Another Day

TL;DR

  • Medical school is all-consuming, but sometimes you need to take time to deal with the slings and arrows of life.
  • Don’t be afraid that you’ll jeopardize your career by taking a leave during medical school. Better to do it before your situation causes harm to your test scores or grades.
  • A Brown University study finds that schools are failing in their diversity goals for admitting URMs.

Poking around on Reddit’s r/medschool, Dave found a rather desperate message from an M3 who’s life is collapsing around him–death, marriage troubles, family illnesses, and all at the same time. so much so that Dave fears their progress might suffer. Is it time for what a military commander might call a “tactical retreat?” Note: Dave isn’t really sure of the technical definition of a tactical retreat, but let’s just say it’s about stepping back and conserving your resources until the situation becomes more favorable to your goals. It’s a metaphor, go with it.

And co-hosts Aline Sandouk (MD/PhD), Nicole Hines (M1), AJ Chowdhury (M1), and Miranda Schene (MD/PhD) discuss the disappointing news that medical schools have made negative progress in attaining diversity goals for students underrepresented in medicine, despite years of effort.

We Want to Hear From You

How’d we do on this week’s show? Did we miss anything in our conversation? Did we anger you? Did we make you smile? Call us at 347-SHORTCT anytime  or email theshortcoats@gmail.com.  It’s always a pleasure to hear from you!

Continue reading When Life Is Getting In the Way of Med School: the Value of the Tactical Retreat.