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Courting the right NMATCH

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We all are trained in the DO’s and DON’TS of Dental school interviews. For example what to wear, what to bring, and how to act, but the real question is whether the Residency that you’re putting all this work in for right for YOU! This blog will give pointers on not only how to be successful during residency interviews, but as a soon to be doctor, what you should demand out of this relationship.


A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step:  Start to investigate programs before you even apply for them on the ADEA PASS. Get to know the program based on their website and look for posted FAQ’s. I recommend doing a site visit before applying. This is a great way to eliminate applying to any unnecessary programs, and only applying to programs which are a perfect match for you! Investigating which programs you want to apply to can be the biggest step in deciding to do a GPR, Oral Surgery, Endodontic, Prosthodontic, Pedodontic, Anesthesiology or Periodontic Residency. Applying to too many can be a waste of time and money on both the director and your part, thus I highly recommend doing your investigation early. While at these site visits and evaluating the program remain courteous…


You catch more flies than with honey than vinegar: Be courteous and personal to those on site of interview day, and not just the interviewer but your competition, the entire faculty, front desk, and Residents. Your ability to be personal sends a message to the program on whether you would be a good fit or not.


He who asks a question is a fool for five minutes; he who does not ask a question remains a fool forever:  Asking questions shows your interest in the programs and demonstrates that you’re involved in the conversation with the person interviewing you. No one likes to be in a conversation with someone who is not active. Be prepared to ask a wide range of questions while on your interview. Ask current resident on how to prepare for the interview. Some great questions are:


-What are plans for this program?

-Tell me about the frequency of complex cases that Residents are able to accomplish once becoming established in this program?

-How many Residents go on the further residency programs after this one? And where did they go? (This last clause may seem pretentious, so use judiciously)

-What CE/didactic courses or clinical training do you offer that set you apart from most other programs? (Great question for a site visit)



As I stated earlier, we are trained in general how to behave during residency, but making that perfect match is like finding the right person. It takes inquisition, consideration, and most importantly time!