In my last installment, I mentioned I would like to write about my process of getting into a residency program in the United States. As soon as I promised this, I remembered the number of steps involved, so please forgive me if I forget to mention something. The path has substantially changed since COVID and differs greatly by individual circumstance. What made the whole process so confusing was having to create multiple accounts and profiles for multiple websites; the next step was often unclear until I called the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) and explicitly asked for instructions.
Let’s start with a very brief introduction: Hello! My name is Aline, and I am an international medical graduate (IMG) from Germany. I used to work in Germany in internal medicine, where I have completed four out of five years of training. I would like to share my experiences, thoughts, and later also some of the processes and steps that got me here over the course of this new column.
You could feel it in the air, in how the nurses double-checked the orders, how the attendings’ notes bloated in size, and even in how the patients, despite their general lack of knowledge towards the inner workings of the hospital, exuded mild apprehension. It was day one of the academic year, the day that the new interns — my new interns — started.