The 33 Hour Day (UAMS Interview)

Happy Thursday again my friends! Like I alluded to last week, I had my UAMS interview last Thursday. And, it seems Thursday is becoming an increasingly significant day of my life, as I became Crisis Text Line’s Thursday Captain, instead of Friday. Also, as I mentioned last week, I got my 3rd and final interview offer of the season on this past Thursday.

There’s so much I want to share about my awesome time in Arkansas. Let’s get started.

First of all, my flights were so badly timed and that’s all on me 😂. I had to get up so so so early on Wednesday to leave, and when I got there I had like a zillion hours until dinner. I did stop in Dallas though, which gave me a chance to ride a fun lil tram, and take pictures with Cowboys stuff for those in my family who are in to them.

 

 

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Yes, you can DEFINITELY tell I got up at 3 am. It’s a thing.😂

I had a little fiasco before dinner actually. So I’m applying to a wide variety of genetic counseling assistanceships as a back-up plan to grad school. I wasn’t really expecting to be contacted for an interview already, but a few days ago someone with the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia contacted me for an initial phone screen. The only times available were during my flight to Dallas. When I contacted them for back up times, the only times they offered were during my flight from Dallas to Little Rock. Lol. So then I had to contact them again for 2nd back up times, and they offered a time a few hours after I arrived in Little Rock. 

So when I get to LR, I leave the airport, get to my AirBnb and order DoorDash for lunch, since I don’t know where anything is and I have a phone interview in 20 minutes. However, I forgot to put my unit number on my order, so I went to text my dasher. He doesn’t have an iPhone, and of course there’s no phone service, so the text doesn’t go through.

Wait.

I DON’T HAVE PHONE SERVICE HERE?!

I HAVE A PHONE INTERVIEW IN 20 MINUTES.

🚨🚨🚨🚨🚨!!!

And my door dasher is STILL going to be lost. 😂

So cue me scrambling around the condo complex surrounding my AirBnb looking for a signal, thereby accidentally finding my dasher, at which point I gave up on finding service and asked my interviewer if we could use Facetime Audio, which THANKFULLY she knew how to use, and it was all good in the end. Well, except I really had no idea what I was ordering on DoorDash and I ended up with $15 of authentic Mexican food which I could neither identify nor finish. 😅

So, anyway after that I decided to go on a walk around Little Rock, at which point I found these trees.

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I thought they were nice. 🙂 I was also very lost :))))

 

So yeah then came dinner time! I saw like 3 other applicants from OU interview lol. And that’s just Feb 8th OU interview applicants who are also Feb 21st UAMS interview applicants. I think that much cross-over increases my chances of matching at one or the other, is that… accurate? It’s probably about time for my “how does the Match work” blog.

*****

Okay, yes I’ve done the simplified math and a high rate of crossover between programs does increase your chances. Let’s say two programs are both trying to fill 4 spots with 8 applicants. If they each have an independent group of 8 unique applicants, that’s 16 total applicants, and 8 will match total. But, if they same 8 applicants are interviewing at both programs, and all 8 are ranked both places, the match rate would be 100%.

(again very oversimplified, and assumes in this case there’s only 2 programs)

Thanks for joining me on this side-blip about Match.

*****

So, dinner was great, and we all got to split desserts with current students, which was quaint and fun. Afterward I went to meet my friend (long-time Discord-chat penpal) Catelyn (who shared her experiences as a current student here)!

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We have been chatting since we both got Augustana interview last year, and she’s a current student at UAMS. She’s amazing. It was great to finally meet in person after 14 months of chatting online lol.

So anyway I was a total poser and just hung out with a bundle of current students for an hour and tried not to feel like the odd duck out.🐤

And yeah then I went home and tried to get sleep. My bed wasn’t the most comfortable and my room was pretty cold, so I’m not sure I got much quality sleep.

Which is unfortunate, because the alarm went off at 6:30 am the next day, thus began the 33 hour day.

I got ready and lyfted over to UAMS. I think my lyft driver got lost though, because my expected arrival was 7:50 and I didn’t get there until 7:59. 😬 Shoutout to that current student at dinner who laid out how to get into the building and to the right location therein, with visual aides. I would not have made it on time without her.

The interview itself was a full day affair, though I guess you’d consider me the afternoon group based on the schedule I was assigned. We had breakfast, presentations, a tour, writing prompts, lunch, more presentations, then finally, five 25 minute interviews. Everyone was literally the kindest! I learned even more about the program, what telemed is like, what the student’s support systems are, and about the counseling theory “the reciprocal engagement model”. We even had a few laughs along the way. I felt right at home and was pretty sad to leave when it ended! My interview ended a few minutes after everyone else’s, so when I finished, a bunch of the interviewers and current students were back out in the common area, and it was just like “bye my lil squad!”.

After that came the TRAIN RESTAURANT. 🥳

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Here it is, folks! A ceiling-bound choo-choo train delivering food in a tub!!!! When it gets to the right table, the tub hooks onto a conveyor belt that carries the food down to the table.

The food is like just okay, but it was totally worth the experience. I even got a hat.

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So after all of this, I walked back over to my AirBnb, relaxed, and basked in the happiness of having another interview offer. We take the small moments we can get in this process!

Finally, it was about 9 pm and time for my spike shift. I actually wasn’t able to stay the whole time because my flight overlapped. Luckily, it was a slowish night anyway. At about 2:30 am I reached 2000 conversations and leveled up to ORANGE on the platform! I figured that was enough to call it a night, so I logged off and called my lyft to the airport. (Which, btw, was a bad idea. Never just assume you can call a lyft at 3 am in a smallish town and get one. Lol. Book ahead. Do something. Not what I did lol.) Eventually I got one and zippy zoomy I was at the airport headed back to Dallas and then on to Salt Lake.

I’m not much of a flight sleeper, so a little dozing off / zoning out was all I could really manage on either flight. When I got back to Salt Lake it was broad daylight, which I guess dried up all of the adenosine and melatonin in my brain, because I was wide awake upon arrival home.

I finally wound down enough to go to sleep at about 2:30 in the afternoon. Having woken up at 6:30 am central the previous day (5:30 am mountain time), I calculate I had a 33 hour day!

I had so much fun interviewing again, and while my final interview won’t involve such nationwide shenanigans, I’m excited to share that I’m going to be researching tips for virtual interviewing and share a blog post about that next week! As the field grows and works to become more accessible, Zoom interviews are going to become more common. I am excited to see what we can learn about how to succeed in these unique interview situations.

I also might treat myself to a brunch out the day of my Bay Path interview, you know, since I resisted the urge to drop $500 to fly to Hartford, CT to interview in person in Longmeadow.

See ya next week! 57 days until Match!

-Laura Cooper-Hastings

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