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Rules of the Road (to Residency)

By Dr. Andrew P. Biesemier

Whether you have always known you wanted to pursue pathology, like me, or you have only recently discovered the hidden gem of pathology, interview season is incredibly reaffirming and cathartic. Finally you get to share your passion and meet your soon-to-be colleagues. No longer isolated, you will realize that we are a vast and supportive community. My advice for PathMatch23:

Rule #1: Start researching programs, browse their websites and social media, and keep an eye out for residency open houses. You can learn a lot about programs early and be knowledgeable during interviews. I was able to glean enough that my pre- and post-interview rank lists didn't change much.

Rule #2: Seek out mentors for advice with your application, personal statement, interviews, etc. This could be at your institution or elsewhere. There are several program directors, many on Twitter, who are more than happy to email with you and give you impartial advice. I had a couple residents look over my personal statement and it was immensely helpful.

Rule #3: Take time to travel to pathology meetings and conferences to network and meet students, residents and pathologists. We love meeting and talking about our field.

Rule #4: Have fun. Fourth year is the best year of medical school for aspiring pathologists because we aren't bound by the tyranny of "core rotations." Use this freedom to take pathology “electives” and other path adjacent or otherwise interesting rotations. For me this was breast surgery and surgical oncology.

Rule #5: Don't work too hard. Take breaks. Take vacations. Spend time with friends and family.

Do you have rules for the Road to Residency? Just DM us @instapathbio or email Kristin at

To learn more about Luci, visit our Products page or email Instapath was founded in 2017 by the same engineers and scientists who developed the original prototypes. Our vision is to enable patients to immediately know their cancer diagnosis instead of waiting days or weeks for the results. Instapath builds microscopy platforms to improve patient care in the form of faster turnaround times and prevention of high risk and costly repeat biopsy procedures. Further, our goal is to provide users with a seamless, modernized digital pathology workflow with tools to complete all pathology evaluations needed to provide the most precise and efficient diagnoses for patients.

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