Medical students across the United States find out where they’ve been accepted for residencies on Match Day. When students get their matches, they’re not simply learning what institutions they’ll be joining; they’re also finding out where they’ll live, who they’ll work with, and what they’ll specialize in.
As students wait to see where they’ve matched, they’re not quite sure what the rest of their lives will look like.
“I’m excited to finally know where I’m going to go…and make plans for the rest of my life!”
- Emily Chen (pictured below)
Leading up to Match Day, students at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA enjoy a “Match Week” of festivities, including Scholarship Day, a talent show, and a carnival. Match Week relieves nerves and gives graduating medical students a chance to celebrate the people who’ve offered friendship, support, and inspiration throughout medical school.
Jeffrey Lin completed his undergraduate education at UCLA. He recalls getting to know one of his mentors, Dr. Linda M. Liau, when he first got to college. During his transition from undergraduate to budding anesthesiologist, Jeffrey enjoyed watching his mentor make her own transition—from junior faculty to Chair of the Department of Neurosurgery.
He credits Dr. Liau’s support and guidance for helping him get through medical school.
Brenda Ramirez and Monique Maher started medical school as roommates. Sharing support and exchanging struggles turned them into best friends. They helped each other through hard times, and they celebrated together during good times.
“When you go through difficult times at the hospital, whether it be patients not doing well…or feeling like you’re not offering enough, it’s good to talk it over with other people and get that support from someone who understands,” said Brenda.
During particularly stressful times, the friends would wind down with quality time, movies, and delicious food, especially fruit tarts from Whole Foods.
Megan McConnell and Monica Chen (pictured above), Student Well-Being Committee co-chairs, worked with the Medical Alumni Association to help plan the Match Day carnival. During the third and fourth years of medical school, training grows even more specific, and many students barely see the friends they made in their first and second years. The committee planned the carnival to bring together the class and kick off Match Day.
“We wanted to celebrate what we’ve all been able to accomplish during these four years of medical school and also celebrate the relationships that we’ve made along the way,” said Megan McConnell.
By Ashley Bell