Career Advising

Career Advising

Careers in Medicine (CiM) Assessments

As you consider your specialty options, it is important to consider your interests, values, skills, and personality. AAMC created the Careers in Medicine career-planning tool, which includes self-assessments will help you better understand who you are and what you want in your career, and then will allow you to explore specialty options that might be the best fit for you.

Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE)

Otherwise known as the Dean’s Letter, the Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE) is completed upon the successful completion of all core clinical clerkships (Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Obstetrics and Gynecology, Pediatrics, Psychiatry, and Surgery) in the third year. The MSPE contains six sections: Indentify Information, Unique Characteristics, Academic History, Academic Progress, Summary, and Appendices

Students are required to schedule a personal meeting with the Associate Dean of Student Affairs prior to beginning the fourth year of medical school in preparation for ERAS and composition of the MSPE.

Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS)

Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS®) is a service that transmits applications, letters of recommendation (LoRs), Medical Student Performance Evaluations (MSPEs), medical school transcripts, USMLE transcripts, COMLEX transcripts, and other supporting credentials from applicants and the Designated Dean's Office to program directors. ERAS consists of MyERAS, Dean's Office Workstation (DWS), Program Director's Workstation (PDWS), and ERAS PostOffice.

CV and Personal Statement

Two critical components of the residency application process are the CV and the personal statement. All students submitting an application for residency at VTC are required to compose a CV and personal statement.

Curriculum Vitae

A curriculum vitae (CV) is a summary of your background and accomplishments related to your academic and work experience. It’s one of many supporting documents you'll need for the residency application process or to apply to research experiences, scholarships, honor societies, and other medical school opportunities.

Creating a CV takes time, but it’s a tool physicians use throughout their professional life to present a complete but succinct summary and highlight of their qualifications. It’s a living document that represents you. Properly constructed and with periodic updates, the CV you develop now will evolve throughout your career.

Personal Statement

Your personal statement is an integral part of a successful application. Unless a program’s faculty or residents know you personally through a rotation, your application — including personal statement — presents your entire professional persona to those who extend interview invitations. Competitive programs have hundreds of qualified applicants, so your personal statement must help you stand out.

Programs differ in how they use personal statements, so even an excellent essay doesn’t guarantee an interview. Number-oriented programs may “screen out” applicants whose numbers (e.g., USMLE scores) fall below their standards. Fortunately, a well-written personal statement can connect you with those who review applications more holistically.


There is no question that your residency interview is an important factor in determining your place on the rank list of programs. Your credentials and accomplishments are what landed you the interview. As highlighted in the figure below, the impression you make at the interview becomes the most important factor in determining a rank order. Therefore, it certainly makes good sense to make every effort to prepare yourself so that you will be seen in the best possible light.