MS4 Class Information – Feb. 29, 2024

Not only does taking the AAMC Graduation Questionnaire (GQ) survey help the school, but you could win a prize

Quick read:

  • Your GQ responses will help UWSOM during the accreditation process, which ultimately leads to a better school for future students
  • As a thank you, the more students who respond in your cohort, the greater your chance to win a $20 cash card
  • Please take the survey now only if you do NOT plan to attend AAMC programs about loan repayment

Here is a message from Sara Kim, Ph.D., research professor, surgery, associate dean for Educational Quality Improvement: I will be providing regular updates on the AAMC Graduation Questionnaire (GQ) response rates. As you probably read in emails from Dr. Tim Dellit’s office, sent on Feb. 15, the GQ is an important benchmark that demonstrates the quality of the medical education program and student services.

Additionally, the data serve an important role for the medical school’s accreditation. Your responses this year will be included in the school’s accreditation document submitted to the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) in preparation for the accreditors’ site visit in early 2026.

Timing: Many of you do not have to take the survey right away. In fact, we encourage you to wait. In past years, AAMC has held an online exit interview and loan repayment workshop that might be helpful in your response to the GQ survey. We will let you know when that is scheduled. If you plan to attend this webinar, you don’t need to complete the survey until after that. If you are not planning to attend this event at all, then feel free to take the survey now.

Our school’s response rate stands at 12 percent (vs. 20 percent nationally). Montana’s response rate is already at 24 percent, followed by Alaska (16 percent), Seattle (10 percent), Spokane (10 percent), and Wyoming and Idaho (both at 5 percent). We thank everyone who has taken the time to complete the survey.

We are offering exciting incentives this year towards the goal of 85 percent response rates! Please refer to the table below that specifies how $20 gift cards will be raffled based on the size of each campus-based cohort. We will draw names when the survey closes. It’s important that you keep the receipt issued by AAMC to receive the gift card.

Thank you so much for your time and input into the survey!


Campus # of Gift Cards ($20) raffled if Campus Response Rates Reach 60% TOTAL # of Gift Cards ($20) if Campus Response Rates Reach 85% If Campus Response Rates Reach 100%
Seattle 11 22 Any unused gift cards will be raffled to the campus cohort(s) reaching 100%
Spokane 7 14
Wyoming 2 4
Alaska 2 4
Montana 3 6
Idaho 4 8

Important note about prizes: According to the UW policy, student employees (e.g., tutors, research assistants, hourly workers, etc.) cannot receive a gift card. If you win the raffle as a student employee, we will send alternative items of $20 value from Amazon.

Thoughts about support and the weeks and months ahead

MS4s received an email late Monday that summarized the thoughts of several UWSOM team members about what you can expect as graduation approaches. We include actionable parts of the message for your reference:

Waiting for the Match:

  • Now that you’ve certified your rank list, the waiting begins.  Patience and relaxation are essential.  Note that patience is not simply waiting, it’s what we do WHILE we’re waiting.  As such, here are some steps you can take to help you make it through these upcoming days of waiting for the Match.
    • Calm your body. Our bodies interpret fear or anxiety as a direct threat. Our ability to reason decreases while in fight/flight/freeze mode. The calmer your body is, the more focused and in control of your thoughts and feelings you will be. Check out Calm, Headspace, or Insight Timer, which are all meditation and mindfulness apps.
    • Calm your mind.  Question yourself through rational thinking. Instead of focusing on whether you will match, focus on the straightforward process of visualizing what it will be like being a resident.
    • Engage in meaningful self-care. Increase your positive self-talk and embrace the anxiety that comes with waiting for your match result. Make sure you are being mindful of your alcohol and substance use, getting enough sleep, exercise and time with people and things that bring you joy when you are not studying.
  • Have compassion, empathy, and patience with yourself. You have worked so hard and will be prepared to take the next step in your medical career.  You have value and programs will recognize that with offering you a position at their institution.  You’ve earned it.

Requests from researchers for you to fill out surveys:

Managing behavioral emergencies, related to your upcoming Transition to Residency later this year: This request comes from Clinton Olivas, M.D., a UWSOM internal medicine resident, who is working with faculty member Vincent Raikhel, M.D., on a medical curriculum about managing inpatient behavioral emergencies such as “Code Gray” responses at UW Medical Center and Harborview Medical Center.

This 5- to 10-minute survey asks about your experiences, knowledge and perspectives around this topic.

“The team is planning to have their first session on this topic as part of your Transition to Residency course later this year, with live simulated environments for you to practice key skills. Your input is essential for our ongoing development of this session, as we want to highlight what would be most helpful to you all – we deeply appreciate your participation,” Dr. Olivas said.

About residency: Here is a request from researchers at The Ohio State University for MS4s entering the NRMP Match.

“We would like to know how you evaluated potential residency programs without face-to-face interviews! Please consider completing the questionnaire here to help researchers at The Ohio State University understand where you obtained information about residency programs. This will help residency programs to make information more accessible to you and applicants in the future. The questionnaire will take less than 10 minutes to complete. Your opinions will help to shape residency recruitment in the future!”

In case you missed it, here is the previous newsletter for MS4s.

Have a wonderful week!