Episode 24: RUSM and Matching as a Couple
Every March, Ross Med celebrates our graduates' success in matching into residency!! During the residency MATCH process, applicants can apply as individuals or as a couple. Applying as a couple allows them to connect their rank order lists so they can match in the same geographic location. In this episode, Dr Yasmine Bargoti Gosey and Dr Bobby Gosey, share their experience matching as a couple.
Milena Garcia: Hello future Rossies and pre-med explorers, this is Milena Garcia your host for Ross University Checking the Pulse: A pre-med Podcast. This is our mini podcast featuring facts and information about our medical program, insights from current students and tips from practicing physicians. Each week this broadcast will be broken down in small episodes, focusing on one aspect of our program, also having guests talk about their own experiences as students and as doctors. During the residency match process applicants can apply as individuals or as a couple. Applying as a couple allows them to connect the rank order list, so they can match in the same geographic location.
My guests today are Dr. Yasmine Bargoti Gosey and Dr. Bobby Gosey, who recently matched as a couple through this process. Welcome back thanks for joining us again
Bargoti-Gosey: Hi guys! We're really excited to be here today. So I'm Yasmine, I'm originally from Aurora, Colorado, where I grew up. I was raised there, and I went to school in Colorado as well, at Colorado State University in Fort Collins and I got my degree in human development and family studies while I was there. Then I took a gap year back in Aurora and then I went to Ross.
Gosey: Well my name is Bobby Gosey. I'm originally from Austin, Texas. I went to undergrad at the University of Texas here in Austin with a degree in neurobiology. I actually took a gap year as well. I was almost going to go to PA school instead of med school. I retook my MCAT, I got into Ross and the rest is history
Garcia: You know, I keep hearing more and more about this gap year, maybe I should do an episode on taking a gap year, so I might call you guys back at some point. So tell us about it
Bargoti-Gosey: What had happened was it was my third semester I believe in your second semester and I think we have been studying in the same area but he said he noticed me but I did not notice until we met at the beach in Dominica, playing football and we connected there and then after a couple of months, we started dating and really that was like a couple months until the hurricane. It was like four or five months into our relationship when the hurricane happened and that basically solidified our relationship. We got engaged just a few months later, and we got married during our third year of medical school and we've been married for almost two years now and we are expecting our first child together. And that's how we ended up together and deciding the couple's match.
Garcia: So Congratulations
Gosey: And since January 2019 we moved to the new campus in Barbados, where we are today.
Ross University School of Medicine Couples Match Residency Advice
Garcia: Dr. Yasmin you talked about match as a couple, can you tell us a little bit more how the couple's match process works?
Bargoti-Gosey: Yeah so couples match. Basically anybody could be in a couple's match. It's basically when two people would like to enter the match in the same year and they are trying to match in the same geographic location. The cool thing about the couple's match is you don't necessarily have to be a couple. You could be but you could also be a mom and a daughter, you could be sister and brother, you could be best friends. Anyone can couples match but only two people can couples match together and so it's basically just a process of your two ranked lists being matched as one. So when you go into the match process they're trying to match you together into one place and so that's how the couple's match works.
Garcia: Bobby, I understand this process, it's all or nothing. Can you talk a little bit more about that?
Gosey: So it's all or nothing. It's a similar pathway but separate from just being a solo individual going into the match. If you rank your list as we both want a match in Indiana or something, that's going to be prioritized, but say we could rank it where I match Indiana and she doesn't match, then that can happen as well. In our case we didn't want to be separated so all our ranks from 1 through 17 were all together or not at all, so we were willing to forego the match in order to stay together because we don't want to be separated.
Garcia: That's an option you can take or you can decide to split and applying to residency in general was a very competitive process. Anyway it sounds like you added another criterion to that. What do the the residency departments look for when evaluating their candidates, Dr. Yasmine?
Bargoti-Gosey: I think it's different for every residency and especially between different specialties might be looking for different things but I think a big thing that residency programs look at is does your personality fit our program and does your personality fit with you know the idea of someone they want to be working with for many hours a day and that could be different between you know pediatrics or anesthesia or surgery they might be looking for a different type of person, but I think your personality really plays into when they're interviewing you. Do they identify with you, and do they connect with you. These also matter: the STEP scores, your letters, your personal statement. Something that we found that really, I think that residency programs liked about us was our volunteer work. I think that people either have a lot of research or a lot of volunteer work. For us, we focused on volunteer work, and I think that's something they brought up almost every time. So it really just showing you're dedicated to something like that.
Garcia: What kind of volunteer work did you do, Dr. Bobby?
Gosey: Well, we started out as working in the food pantry and then from there we also did a little bit of volunteer work with the children's leukemia foundation there in Michigan, and then when the Covid hit, everything really shut down. We saw that there was a need for help, helping those essential front-line workers, so we created Michigan Covidsitters, which was an organization helping with child setting, pet care, as well as elderly care and we were able to gather donations to give to the local hospitals for PPE and supplies. We found passion in volunteering; other people may find passion in other things. The biggest thing is finding something you're passionate in and really putting your effort and showing that you're committed to that
Garcia: You mentioned some of the criteria that the residency departments are looking for with their candidates and matching personality and whatnot what do you think made you strong candidates for the match?
Bargoti- Gosey: I think for us we had the solid foundation of getting the step scores that got you into the door for some of the interviews, but I think the biggest thing for us is we had average step scores, we had average grades, you know? But we were hard workers and I think that that came out in our letters of recommendation and then also just in our networking. I think the number one thing that we did as a couple was advocating for each other and advocating just for ourselves, as far as networking and reaching out to as many doctors around the united states as we could. Anyone that we had a connection with, going to any event that we could to make connections like the Anesthesia conference, the pediatric conference, just letting people know who we are and making sure people knew “hey, oh yeah, that's Yasmin,” you know “Hey, that's Bobby.” They're matching as a couple. That networking piece I think was huge, and then like we said before, I think the volunteer work and showing that we were dedicated to that volunteer work really helped out, once they accepted us for an interview and saw that. It's like the two-step process, getting an interview and then them liking you at the interview.
The biggest thing with that step, the second step is just being yourself. You don't realize how easy it is to be yourself because you know yourself the most. Maybe even showing a little sign of humor to get a little laugh, I think that easily breaks the ice and it lightens the mood. Then like how you asked me and said earlier these people are just looking for “Are you a candidate that we would like to work with,” for hours on end. I think that's the biggest key going into interviews, just be yourself and I think the rest will kind of shine through.
Garcia: What kind of advice or support did you get along the way that you feel helped you through this process?
Bargotti-Gosey: I think the biggest support that we got and I think is one of like the strongest things about going to Ross is you have this ginormous Ross alumni network. They're just like all over the United States. The coolest thing about Rossies and Ross alumni is they're so willing to help you like they really want to help future Rossies and so simply reaching out to raw students who are already residents there or maybe they're even attending. I think we even had one program where the program director or assistant program director was a Ross student. Those people, they're just so willing to put in a word for you or vouch for you because they know how hard Ross students work. I think that was like one of the biggest support networks for us and I think the advice that I would have for any student who goes through what we went through and just going to Ross and doing the match process and couples matching is reaching out to your advocates and that's the Ross alumni network in my opinion.
Gosey: Then the second thing we also did was using social media and Facebook– fortunately we were blessed when we started the Covidsitters that we were able to get in contact with a group called physician moms group and this group had over a hundred thousand physician moms across the United States and we quickly asked “Is there any mentors available for anesthesia or pediatrics?” I received around six mentors for myself, ranging from across the whole United States Not in just one area but all over, and I think that built and increased the network size and it also increased the knowledge and going into this process that's very unfamiliar and not really explained well, so it's nice having someone who's went through the process to say these are things you should do, you shouldn't do, this is when you should reach out and you shouldn't reach out this is what you should include in your resume, you shouldn't include in it. Having that screening kind of helps fine-tune your application as a whole, so we thought that really helped.
Garcia: Finding a mentor that will guide you through the way right and at this point Ross has about 15,000 graduates already practicing all over the US and Canada so you already start with 15,000 and then as you said Bobby, you keep looking and you broaden your network pool, right? You're up to over a hundred-thousand right away by choosing the right groups of mentors to belong to. We certainly appreciate you guys taking your time to talk to us here today. Any advice for our future Rossies on how to be successful in medical school given so much that you've accomplished?
Bargotti-Gosey: Oh man, it really goes you should be your own biggest advocate and there's going to be so many roadblocks along the way no matter what journey you pick. It's all a matter of just picking yourself back up, reaching out to your mentors, advocating for yourself and putting in that work and I think if you do that, you can get through any of the roadblocks and that's in all parts of life. That's my biggest advice and I think one other thing that is not really talked about is to celebrate the little successes that you have. You know those roadblocks that you got over? Take some time to yourself, a little me time. Celebrate those moments, because that refuels you for your next battle. I think that's the biggest thing for me.
Garcia: You can be sure that we will be celebrating right in our little corners here for everything that you have both accomplished. Yasmine and I met before she got into medical school, so I feel like this has come full circle for me. You justify why I do what I do, so congratulations. It's been a pleasure watching you promote through your journey through medical school with us accomplishing your dream. That's why we're here. Congratulations on matching as a couple, congratulations on finding each other, congratulations on the upcoming baby. You guys are so accomplished we could do an entire podcast on everything that you've accomplished. Thank you for your time and we wish you continued success. For everybody listening, thank you for joining us. We will see you next time. Thank you for listening to Ross University: Checking the Pulse: A Pre-med Podcast. This is Milena Garcia, your host. This podcast is made for you, so let me know what topics you want us to cover in future episodes. You can send me your comments, feedbacks, and requests to email@example.com. Definitely follow us on Instagram, Twitter and our YouTube channel at rossmed school or on Facebook. If you’re listening to this podcast on iTunes, I am working my way to five stars, so remember to send me your comments and let me know your ideas. If you’re on Spotify, remember to click the follow button to get our future episodes. Alright, see you future Rossies and pre-med explorers next week!