Both 3rd and 4th year students should be updating their C.V.’s.

If you are a 3rd year student, you should have an updated C.V. that you give to your preceptors when you do rotations. If you decide to ask a preceptors for a LOR then give him or her another copy along with the ERAS letter request form.

C.V. formatting should be a clean simple layout which is easy to read. 11pt, 1 inch margins, modern font. Do not run bullets all the way down the page, or use lines to separate each section, or put your photo on the page. C.V.’s run 2 to 4 pages at the most.

Put both your matriculation date and your graduation date at the top of the page with the full name of your degree. If your GPA is in the top 1/3 then include it. If your board scores are above the mean for your specialty choice then add those too.

Add a section for leadership near the top. This is a very important skill that is hard to teach. It is good to demonstrate previous experience.

A research section should be next. If you have a lot of publications and presentations then choose the best 5 or so. If you don’t have any in medical school then use undergraduate research.

Frame your work experiences in terms of medical experiences or leadership. Same with volunteer experiences. Tell the program director how you will use your experiences to benefit his or her program.

Add a brief section with your personal interests in order to show balance in your life.

4th year students waiting for the upcoming match need to update their C.V. in case they do not match. Add any completed research publications or presentations that were not in the original ERAS application. Add board scores which were not originally on the transcripts sent to programs. If possible get an addendum of comments from 4th year rotations which were not included in the MSPE sent on October 1st. Get back-up LOR’s for a back-up specialty now instead of trying to do it during match week in case you don’t match. For students with 5 or less interviews, continue to network with your connections to see if you have missed anyone who could help you.

Ask faculty or other medical students to review your C.V. for typos, errors and clarity.

You can also hire a professional to review your C.V. and give you feedback. This is a service that Brenda Chezek Consulting provides for a minimal fee. If interested, you can send a message on LinkedIn or to brendachezek@yahoo.com.