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Aafp Fellowship Application Personal Statement

A number of fellowship programs also use the Electronic Residency Application System (ERAS) for their application process. Eligibility for fellowship positions generally requires completion of a residency program. Contact the fellowship program for specific requirements and application procedures.

The ERAS Process for Fellowship Applicants

STEP 1

Contact programs directly to learn about their participation status in ERAS, the ERAS application cycle in which they are participating (July or December cycle), their program requirements, and the mechanism (ERAS or other) for applying to their programs.

STEP 2

Contact the ERAS Fellowships Documents Office (EFDO)(www.erasfellowshipdocuments.org) for an electronic token, instructions for accessing MyERAS, and information for completing the application process using ERAS.

STEP 3

Go to the ERAS website(students-residents.aamc.org) and complete your application and designation list. Use online help and the Fellowship Application Checklist(www.aamc.org) to guide you through the process of completing your ERAS application.

STEP 4

Use EFDO Online Services to submit your medical performance evaluation, medical school transcript, and a photograph. Letters of recommendation may be submitted through the ERAS LoR Portal. Contact your medical school to determine its policy on releasing medical school transcripts, and MSPEs. If your school will not release these directly to you, it may submit directly to the EFDO using its Medical Institution Document Upload Service.

STEP 5

Use ERAS’s "Programs Applied To" page to confirm that supporting documents were uploaded to ERAS and, later, that documents are downloaded by programs. Check your email frequently for requests for additional information and invitations.

Learn more by visiting the ERAS Fellowship Document Office website(www.erasfellowshipdocuments.org).

Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Adolescent MedicineHematology and OncologyPediatric Infectious Disease
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Allergy/ImmunologyHospice and Palliative MedicinePediatric Nephrology
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Cardiovascular DiseaseInfectious DiseasePediatric Rehab Medicine
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Child Abuse PediatricsInterventional CardiologyPediatric Rheumatology
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Colon and Rectal SurgeryMaternal-Fetal MedicinePediatric Surgery
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Complex General Surgical OncologyMedical GeneticsPulmonary Disease
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Critical Care Medicine
Neonatal/Perinatal MedicinePulmonary Disease & Critical Care
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Developmental-Behavioral PediatricsNephrologyRheumatology
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism
OncologySleep Medicine
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive SurgeryPain MedicineSports Medicine
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: GastroenterologyPediatric CardiologyThoracic Surgery
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Geriatric MedicinePediatric Critical Care MedicineVascular Neurology
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Gynecologic OncologyPediatric Emergency MedicineVascular Surgery
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: Headache MedicinePediatric EndocrinologyVascular and Interventional Radiology
Fellowship Specialties Using ERAS: HematologyPediatric Hematology/Oncology 


Every application process includes the preparation of a personal or autobiographical statement. Typically, application forms for residency positions include a request for a personal statement. Personal statements should also be included in cover letter form when applying for a job or another type of position.
 
When applying to a residency program, the personal statement is your opportunity to tell the reader — a residency program director, faculty, or current resident — who you are and what is unique about you as a potential residency candidate. Most importantly, you should emphasize the reasons for your interest in that specialty and in that particular program.
 
Feel free to highlight items in your CV if they help remind your reader of the experiences you’ve had that prepared you for the position. This is your opportunity to expand upon activities that are just listed in the CV but deserve to be described so your reader can appreciate the breadth and depth of your involvement in them. It should not be another comprehensive list of your activities, but rather should refer to activities that are listed in detail on the CV.
 
You may choose to relate significant personal experiences, but do so only if they are relevant to your candidacy for the position.
 
Lastly, the personal statement is the appropriate place to specify your professional goals. It offers the opportunity to put down on paper some clear, realistic, and carefully considered goals that will leave your reader with a strong impression of your maturity, self-awareness, and character.
 
The importance of good writing cannot be overemphasized. The quality of your writing in your personal statement is at least as important as the content. Unfortunately, not only are good writing skills allowed to deteriorate during medical school, but in some sense, they also are deliberately undermined in the interest of learning to write concise histories and physicals. For the moment, forget everything you know about writing histories and physicals. While preparing your personal statement:

  • Avoid abbreviations.
  • Avoid repetitive sentence structure.
  • Avoid using jargon. If there is a shorter, simpler, less pretentious way of putting it, do so.
  • Don't assume your reader knows the acronyms you use. As a courtesy, spell everything out.
  • Use a dictionary and spell check. Misspelled words look bad.
  • Use a thesaurus. Variety in the written language can add interest -- but don't get carried away.
  • Write in complete sentences.

Get help if you think you need it. For a crash course in good writing try The Elements of Style, Strunk and White, MacMillan Press, Fourth Edition. If you have friends or relatives with writing or editing skills, enlist their help. Student organizations at your school may host personal statement clinics, or your school may offer review services. Many student, medical, and specialty societies, local and national, may offer personal statement reviews or workshops.
 
Most importantly, your personal statement should be original composition. Get help where you need it, but make sure your personal statement is your original work. Remember, in the early part of the residency selection process, your writing style is the only factor your reviewers can use to learn about you personally.

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