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Match Day: One Day and One Dramatic Year in…

Match Day: One Day and One Dramatic Year in the Lives of Three New Doctors

by Brian Eule

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This book provides an interesting look into the lives of medical school students.
It addresses long hours, months of anticipation and acceptance of the fact that their
lives will to some extent be affected by an algorithm that they have no control over.
I have long known that a medical school student had a long row to hoe, and often wondered
at the choice to follow that path. I try to convince myself that it is because of a true calling, and
not the prospect of a large bank account at the end of the day. Sometimes I succeed.

This would be a wonderful book for school libraries, and student counselors to have on hand, as it
does give a good bit of insight into this choice. Not quite a page turner, it did hold my interest from cover
to cover. ( )
1 vote mckait | Jun 21, 2012 |
This a really interesting book. It traces the lives of 3 women from the time they're medical students about to be 'matched' by a computer algorithm to residency programs at hospitals around the country. The 3 women are different, all in relationships, one partner being a medical student as well, and within the year of their internship, we follow them through their experiences with facing death, making mistakes, struggling to maintain their relationships, and also learning how to heal and provide comfort to their patients.

The book brings us behind the professional facade these doctors need to maintain and allows us to see them as the dedicated, strong and at times scared and fragile people they are. ( )
3 vote cameling | May 30, 2012 |
Match Day is the most important — and most nerve wracking — day for graduating students in every medical school in the United States, as more than 15,000 fourth years find out which residency program they have been matched to. The process involves a complicated dance, in which students interview at different hospitals and medical schools with their prospective program directors, attending physicians, and future resident colleagues, and both the students and the residency programs submit ranked lists; the students indicate which programs they would most prefer to attend, and the residency programs rate which students they desire the most. A computer program in a small room in the nation's capital compiles this data and spits out its results, in a process that cannot be challenged by the students or program directors.

On Match Day, each student is given a sealed envelope in an auditorium, in a ceremony filled with extreme tension and high emotions, as the students' career plans and the schools' reputation for placing their graduates in the top programs are on the line. Medical students are by nature competitive, highly driven, and even more highly anxious, and each has spent countless hours on the Match process and lost nearly as many hours of sleep worrying about it. At several schools, including my own, one or more local television news stations film the ceremony, which is broadcast on that evening's news. As each student opens his or her envelope, screams of joys are mingled with silent tears or looks of stunned disbelief, depending on the individual Match results.

For some students, generally those who are not married, in a serious relationship, or seeking a very unique career path,the program they match to is not critical, as long as they get into a solid one. However, many students do have fiancees, or spouses with or without children, whose lives are also deeply affected by the contents of those envelopes.

Brian Eule, the author of Match Day, writes poignantly of his experiences as a person removed from the process, yet deeply affected by it as his girlfriend, a surgeon who is now his wife, and two other couples go through the Match and intern year. All three women are in medicine, whereas two of the men are not, in keeping with the dramatic strides made to equalize the gender bias in U.S. medical schools in the past 25 years (my graduating class was the first in the 100-plus year history of the school to have more women than men, and practically all schools have achieved gender parity). Eule's description of the day to day lives of these interns, their spouses, and the effect of medical school and residency on their relationships is spot on; each doctor struggles daily with the soul crushing demands of intern year, each non-medical spouse tries to be as supportive as possible while putting their own needs and desires on a back burner, and each couple's love is challenged on a regular basis. This excerpt by Eule about his wife and their relationship is especially insightful:

It would always be a tug-of-war. I had come to terms with the idea that I was marrying a woman with a double identity. For the thirty seconds she sat in the car with me, she was the Stephanie I had known for the last six years. But running back into the hospital, she was a woman whose level of responsibility would always be hard for me to relate to, no matter how much I learned from her and from my friends about the culture of becoming a doctor.

Match Day is a superb book about the lives of young doctors and their partners, which would be of special interest to medical students, their significant others and families, but I would also recommended it to the general reader, as Eule tells a compelling and highly readable account of love under highly stressful circumstances. ( )
9 vote kidzdoc | Feb 1, 2011 |
A fascinating look at how three brand new doctors begin their careers, starting with the big day where they are matched to the hospital they will spend the next several years as interns. Loved this book! ( )
  porchsitter55 | Dec 25, 2009 |
Fabulous book for anyone who may be entering the field of medicine as a resident or a spouse. The author quickly had me cheering for these interns as well as their significant others. Eule did a fabulous job on this book and perhaps can accredit his successful marriage to the time spent writing this book! haha ( )
  SusGob711 | Dec 17, 2009 |
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