It’s Interview Season! >
October 8, 2019
Hello everyone! I hope you are all enjoying the beginning of the fall season. Along with pumpkin spice, and everything nice, the Chan residency interviews have begun. It thought it might be helpful for share some interview tips. Remember, interviewing for a residency is like interviewing for a job, and these tips can save to apply to when you interview at external residencies later on as well.
- Dress for success, and strike pose. I know you’ve heard it a million times, but I will say it again for good measure. While you don’t need to go outside of your means to purchase an entire new outfit, it really does make a difference when you dress for the position you want. Not only does it reflect a level a respect and professionalism, it can be helpful to get you into “the zone”. What also helps is to do a power pose. Take 5 minutes to do a power pose before going into your interview to level up on your confidence.
- Prepare an elevator speech. You’ve written countless ones of how you will describe occupational therapy, but it’s also good to have one about yourself. Writing an elevator speech about why you want the residency you’re applying for will not only have a handy go to answer if you are asked this question, but it will give you an opportunity to identity your strengths!
- Practice talking about yourself. If you’re like me, and feel uncomfortable talking about yourself under pressure, practicing talking about yourself can be really helpful. Find a safe space with someone you feel comfortable and do a “mock interview”. This can get your interview jitters out and help you feel more prepared on the big day.
- Write yourself a LTG. I mentioned this in a previous post, but setting a clear goal for what you want to achieve during your residency will help anchor your talking points. This will especially come in handy if you get a question you weren’t prepared to answer. Just tie it back to your goal(s).
- Be yourself! While sometimes it may seem like there is a “right answer” to an interview question, it’s always best to be true to yourself. One of the goals of an interview is find a good fit between the candidate and the residency site. Trust the process and be yourself.
Remember, take a deep breath, count to ten, use whatever relaxation strategy works for you, because you got this! Fight on!!
You’ve Submitted Your Application… Now What? >
October 1, 2019
Congratulations to all who have submitted your OTD applications for the Chan residencies! You did it! I am happy and proud that you have decided to take the next step in your academic/professional journey. When I was in your position, applying for all the wonderful opportunities Chan has to offer, I had experienced anxieties about committing. More specially, I remember I was second guessing myself. Did I even know where I wanted to practice? What if I make the wrong choice and regret it? If this sounds familiar to you, I would like to share some strategies that helped me:
- Take a deep breath: Relax. The hardest part, taking that first step and leap of faith in yourself and capabilities is over. You got this.
- Reflect: Journaling, as you may all know, is a great way to organize your thoughts. Take some time to journal about why you came into OT in the first place. This will give you a visual aid in organizing your thoughts about where you want to take your OTD, and how you can make it fit into your career goals. This will also give you a foundation to work off of when prepping for interviews.
- Ask: If you have applied to one or more USC Chan residency, and want more information on what the residency looks like from a student perspective, don’t be shy to reach out to the current resident. We were all in your shoes once and can relate. If your feel uncomfortable cold calling a resident you don’t know, feel free to use me as an alternate resource.
I hope this post was helpful. And remember I am here for you!! 😃 ✌️
Why I Chose the OTD >
August 29, 2019
For me, returning to school to pursue a second Master’s degree felt like running into a deep and dark tunnel. Despite this, the first time I stepped foot into CHP for an informational session of the program, I had a sense that I was becoming a part of something great. The amazing faculty, robust programs, and sense of community among others, has always made me proud to be a Trojan. I must admit that there were times I would get overwhelmed and second guess whether I would be able to power through to graduation. Then Fall Semester of my second year came. I was hesitant. The idea of staying on for the OTD had always been at the back of my mind from day one. However, I found myself questioning if even know where I wanted to be for my residency. I still had one immersion left. What I needed at that time was to “OT myself”. After taking a step back and allowing myself to breathe, I made a list of the pros and cons of applying for the OTD. I reflected on my initial inspiration of why I wanted to be an OT. Having this visual, and having taken the time to re-connect with my goals, I was able to see that all the amazing qualities of Chan that inspired me to apply for the Masters, stood true of the Doctorate. However this time, I wasn’t running into darkness unarmed. With me were all the tools of an entry-level practitioner. Now that I am beginning my residency, I strongly feel that I made the right choice. I find myself better positioned to expand my knowledge to elevate my future practice with the support of my mentor, Dr. Rebecca Aldrich, and the Chan Division. Moving forward, I am excited to share with you my experience and hope to provide useful insights into OTD.