Raised in South Korea, Dr. Chai completed his undergraduate degree from UCLA and went on to attend medical school in the Caribbean. Craving a higher level of faculty-to-student interaction, he transferred universities and graduated from St. Matthew’s University of Medicine.
Unfortunately for Dr. Chai, transferring institutions reflected poorly on his application when coupled with his failed attempt on Step 2 CS.
As an FMG who also required visa sponsorship during the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Chai found it nearly impossible to get an interview—let alone match.
In order to show Program Directors that Dr. Chai has the clinical skills necessary to be a strong Resident, our pathway included a strong hands-on approach.
This included dedicated speech pathology to allow Dr. Chai to become an effective oral communicator, along with accent reduction and overall clarity of speech. We enrolled him in CITI research training courses, allowing Dr. Chai to become certified in IRB, Statistics, and ethics.
This one-on-one training along with our robust CV / PS revitalization allowed Dr. Chai to put his best foot forward during interviews—directly leading him to a hands-on externship at a Cleveland Clinic affiliated/ACGME-accredited teaching hospital in Ohio.
To further strengthen and highlight his U.S. clinical experience, Dr. Chai worked as a researcher at Robert Packer Guthrie Hospital in Pennsylvania as both lead-investigator and sub-investigator on several projects. This research position also sponsored his H1 visa—no small feat given the severely tightened immigration and travel restrictions brought on by COVID-19 restrictions.
By demonstrating his clinical skills, sharpening his communication, and showcasing his overall talents Dr. Chai was offered a post-match PGY-1 residency in his preferred specialty of Internal Medicine. What a story!