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Characterizing the use of class rank in evaluating applicants for veterinary internship and residency positions

Lon V. Kendall DVM, PhD1, Victoria R. Nelson DVM2, and Melinda A. Frye DVM, PhD3
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  • 1 Laboratory Animal Resources and Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523.
  • | 2 Doctor of Veterinary Medicine Program, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523.
  • | 3 College Office and Department of Biomedical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80523.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To characterize how class rank and other criteria are used to evaluate applicants for veterinary internship and residency positions.

SAMPLE

Program directors for 572 internship and residency programs.

PROCEDURES

A survey was sent to program directors asking them to score the importance of 7 items (cover letter, letters of reference, curriculum vitae, veterinary class rank, grade point average, grades for classes specifically related to the internship or residency specialty area, and interview) they could use in evaluating applicants for an internship or residency and to rank those 7 items, along with an open item asking participants to list other criteria they used, from most to least important.

RESULTS

Responses were obtained for 195 internship and 222 residency programs. For both internship programs and residency programs, mean importance scores assigned to the 7 items resulted in the same ordering from most to least important, with letters of reference, interview, curriculum vitae, and cover letter most important. Rankings of the importance of the 7 items, along with an “other” item, were similar for internship and residency programs; the most important item was a candidate's letters of reference, followed by the interview, cover letter, and curriculum vitae.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Results suggested that although most veterinary internship and residency programs consider class rank and overall grade point average when evaluating applicants, these 2 items were not the most important. For both internship and residency programs, the most important items were an applicant's letters of reference, followed by the interview, cover letter, and curriculum vitae.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To characterize how class rank and other criteria are used to evaluate applicants for veterinary internship and residency positions.

SAMPLE

Program directors for 572 internship and residency programs.

PROCEDURES

A survey was sent to program directors asking them to score the importance of 7 items (cover letter, letters of reference, curriculum vitae, veterinary class rank, grade point average, grades for classes specifically related to the internship or residency specialty area, and interview) they could use in evaluating applicants for an internship or residency and to rank those 7 items, along with an open item asking participants to list other criteria they used, from most to least important.

RESULTS

Responses were obtained for 195 internship and 222 residency programs. For both internship programs and residency programs, mean importance scores assigned to the 7 items resulted in the same ordering from most to least important, with letters of reference, interview, curriculum vitae, and cover letter most important. Rankings of the importance of the 7 items, along with an “other” item, were similar for internship and residency programs; the most important item was a candidate's letters of reference, followed by the interview, cover letter, and curriculum vitae.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Results suggested that although most veterinary internship and residency programs consider class rank and overall grade point average when evaluating applicants, these 2 items were not the most important. For both internship and residency programs, the most important items were an applicant's letters of reference, followed by the interview, cover letter, and curriculum vitae.

Contributor Notes

Address correspondence to Dr. Kendall (lon.kendall@colostate.edu).