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Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting as a P3: Dollars and Sense

College Connection

by Summer Record P-3, SSHP Member

If you are a P1 or P2 and considering a residency, you have probably asked the question, “Should I go to Midyear as a P3?” The answer is not quite as simple as you may think. When I began the journey to answer my burning question, I sought out advice from a few very wise colleagues. 

Now, opinions range far and wide on going to ASHP Midyear before P4 year. Most people provided some sort of gray area reasoning leaning either towards attending or not attending. As I thought through my decision, I weighed the pros and cons to determine the best choice for me. Here are a few questions to ask yourself when deciding whether or not to attend.

I first asked myself, “What is holding you back?” The biggest obstacle for most classmates I have talked to is cost. It always costs money to attend national meetings, and this particular meeting is no exception. So now, the question is: “Is paying for the meeting worth it?” In my opinion, after attending the meeting, the cost was worthwhile. While at the meeting, I was able to practice skills needed to talk to residency programs as well as participate in networking at the conference. I learned at some clinical sessions, observed at some student sessions, networked at some receptions, and enjoyed Florida. 

Attending the meeting as a P3 with low stress and low stakes was a great decision. My 2017 meeting attendance was just a dress rehearsal for next year. I got the feel for the meeting, and I made some new connections along the way. Sure, a few programs were too busy to talk to P3s. However, I waited until the last hour of the showcases to be considerate of P4s and was able to talk to almost all of the programs to which I am tentatively interested in applying. 

For those of you in the Class of 2019, I hope you do not think that you missed the mark by not attending as a P3. Here is my recap of what you need to know for ASHP Midyear in 2018:
  • Plan specific questions to ask each program for the residency showcase.
  • Do not take up too much of any program’s time at the showcase.
  • Be kind and professional to everyone, everywhere.
  • Ask for a business card, offer a business card.
  • Wear comfortable shoes. You will walk more than you anticipate walking.
  • Go to receptions and network. Do not be shy.

In the end, I am glad that I went to the Midyear Clinical Meeting. To any future P3s debating attending ASHP Midyear Clinical Meeting with a plan to pursue a residency, I say, “ABSOLUTELY DO IT!” 

I hope to see everyone in Anaheim on December 2nd-6th, 2018!


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