Fellowship Tips from Your Colleagues (Before and During Fellowship) 

Top Ways to Help You Learn About Pediatric Fellowship Options: 

Use Word of Mouth – Many graduates agreed that word of mouth generally provided the most useful information when it came to selecting a fellowship and which programs to considerWord of mouth allows a practical appraisal of what each program is like.  It’s also a good idea to reach out to the current program director to review what to expect in fellowship and prepare for application questions.   

Get Social – Similarly, you can reach out to trainees and faculty that you know through medical school or residency to ask about personal experience, who/what they knew of the program, and concerns that might not show up on official documentation. Social media, specifically Twitter, is a great place to reach out to people you haven't met but could help answer questions or point you in the right direction. 

Surf the Web – Specific program (e.g. hospital medicine) websites can be helpful for "data" regarding the programs- clinical rotations, research expectations, patient care volumes, application information, etc.   

Go to Conferences and NetworkAAP conferences are also great opportunities for networking with potential fellowship program faculty and/or traineesMany residents also attend conference sessions specific to their subspecialty of interest to get familiar with fellowships and programming related to the discipline. 

What to Focus on During Fellowship: 

  • Work on clinical/hands on skills (including patient care and procedural experience) 
  • Focus on scholarly activity, whether that be clinical research, quality improvement, medical education, information technology, or other health services research 
  • Fine tune your time management skills – utilize tools for tracking productivity 
  • Continue to work on your research skills – specifically statistics and writing  
  • Learn how to appraise evidence/literature, including recent literature of your field and major historical studies 
  • Continue to develop your teaching skills 
  • Be sure to understand the business of medicine  
  • Continue to build your professional network – via social media and conference attendance 
  • Utilize your mentor relationships – It’s important to have someone advocating for you and helping you navigate the system and gain critical experience. Don't be afraid to look outside your division/department/institution!  
  • Develop your long-term career goals – do you want to focus on research, teaching, administration, etc.? 
  • Determine your style of care  this is a great time to see what you like (or don’t like) from your attendings and adjust your style 
  • Learn as much as you can – self-identify your weaknesses or what scares you and make sure you seek patients who fit that bill and be sure to take the lead in their care 
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American Academy of Pediatrics