MS3 Class Information – Oct. 5, 2023

Explore & Focus (E&F) Phase overview & planning webinar is Wednesday, Oct. 11

Get a jump-start on learning about E&F and your fourth year by attending the E&F Phase overview and planning webinar. You’ll hear about:

  • Curricular components of the E&F Phase
  • Residency planning components to prioritize now
  • Step 2 CK
  • Scheduling E&F courses (including permission-only courses)
  • Travel and housing
  • Financial aid
  • Student Affairs support
  • The Match timeline

Join us next Wednesday, Oct. 11, 2023, starting at 4:30 p.m. AK, 5:30 p.m. PT, 6:30 p.m. MT via Zoom:

The Student Affairs and Curriculum teams hope to see you there!

Schedule your fourth-year Career Planning appointment

A message from your career advisors: Please schedule a fourth-year Career Planning Appointment with your career advisors anytime from October to December 2023. Before your appointment, please carefully read the information and resources below and plan to spend a minimum of 90 minutes in preparation.

 How do you know if you need an appointment?

If you have experienced any of the following challenges, please schedule your fourth-year Career Planning Appointment:

  • Foundations course fail(s)
  • Step 1 or Step 2CK fail. Low Step 1 or Step 2CK score, or have not taken Step 1 yet
  • Clerkship fail or clerkship exam fail
  • Two or more Passes in Patient Care Phase
  • Pass in a specialty of interest
  • Not completing Patient Care Phase in March/April
  • Expansion (specialty dependent)

In our meeting, we will discuss:

  • Your specialty interests and specialty prioritization for Explore & Focus rotations
  • Specialty decision-making strategies and timeline
  • Preliminary preparations for your residency application components

 Required steps prior to scheduling your fourth-year Career Planning Appointment (plan for 90 or more minutes of prep):

Read the Career Planning for 4th Year Guide webpage and follow the instructions, including reviewing the slide deck at the top of the page to:

  • Understand the important components and timeframes to help you map out your E&F schedule using the Clinical Phase Planning Worksheet
  • Introduce you to the residency application process
  • Understand strategies for your residency application
  1. Download and complete the Clinical Phase Planning Worksheet found on the Career Planning for 4th Year Guide webpage
  2. Schedule a 4th Year Career Planning Appointment (select this appointment type in the system)
  3. Upload your worksheet to your meeting in CAS so it can be discussed when you come in. Appointments cannot be modified within 24 hours of your appointment time; email your worksheet to your career advisor if less than 24 hours before your appt.

For information on specialty decision-making, review the Choosing A Career content.

If you want to look further ahead, visit the Residency Application Timeline, and Residency Application Components on the Applying to Residency page.

Your preparation for your Fourth-year Career Planning Appointment with an advisor will help us make effective use of our time together. The purpose of the meeting is for you to feel clear in your goals and tasks for fourth-year planning and preparing for your residency application. We are here to support you!

Patient Care Preferencing continues with a new deadline

Patient Care preferencing for clerkships offered Spring 2024-Winter 2025 continues until Friday, Oct. 13, 2023, at 3 p.m. AK, 4 p.m. PT, 5 p.m. MT. This is an extension of the original deadline to give you more time during a busy exam week.

As a result Registration Office hours are cancelled for tonight, Thursday, Oct. 5, but a new session has been added for Thursday, Oct. 12, 2023, 5 p.m. AK, 6 p.m. PT, 7 p.m. MT.

Check the Patient Care Scheduling section here for all the details, including how to make preferences using EVOS, the preferencing system.

Melanoma Research Foundation offers research grants

The Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) is offering 1-year, $3,000 grants to promote research opportunities to medical students early in their careers by funding clinical or laboratory-based research projects focused on a better understanding of the prevention, early detection and behaviors that impact melanoma risk, biology, and treatment of melanoma, including cutaneous, ocular, mucosal, pediatric, etc. Applications for 2024 grants will be accepted until Nov. 15, 2023. You can learn much more on the Research Grant RFP page or by emailing

“Tip of the Month” from the Career Advising Student Advisory Board

Planning Explore and Focus rotations and your fourth year can be difficult, but there are people who can help! You can meet with Career Advising and meet with people who have been in your shoes. Remember to book the “4th Year Career Planning Appointment” in CAS and set aside time for the prep steps before your meeting.

Fourth-year students who applied to your specialty of interest, current residents and physician mentors are great resources for scheduling advice! However, don’t stress too much about your schedule right now. You can always move it around up to six weeks before the start date – and almost everyone makes changes to their schedule as they develop interests over time and are in tune with when they’ll need breaks, more time for Step 2 studying, etc. 🙂

  • Reviewed by Career Advising Student Advisory BIPOC board member L’Oreal Kennedy. Originally written by BIPOC alum Shanelle Briggs.
In case you missed it, here is the previous issue of the student newsletter for MS3s.


Have a wonderful week!