1) What type of residency should I choose to be eligible for primary care sports medicine fellowships?
An applicant should evaluate their interests and goals for the future when they choose a residency. A person interested in sports medicine can do a residency in family medicine, pediatrics, internal medicine, emergency medicine and physical medicine and rehabilitation. Remember that your primary care training should be your priority.
2) How do I research individual fellowships?
A listing of fellowships can be found on the AMSSM (http://www.amssm.org/), AAFP (http://www.aafp.org/), AOASM (http://www.aoasm.org/), and individual fellowship websites. Attending the AMSSM Annual Meeting and networking with people from the various fellowship programs can give information that is not found on the websites. This can best be done during the Annual Meeting Fellowship Fair. You can also go to the ERAS website to find a list of accredited fellowship programs participating in the electronic application system:
3) How do I decide which programs to apply?
You should decide: what area of the country you would like to train in, do you want a community or university setting, which sports do you want included in the fellowship, are you interested in doing research, what credentials does the faculty have, and what benefits does the program offer.
4) Does accreditation matter? How do I find out about accreditation?
It is important to attend an accredited fellowship; otherwise, you will not be qualified to take the certificate of added qualification examination in sports medicine. The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) website (http://www.acgme.org/) lists programs that are accredited.
5) What are the important dates to remember?
JUNE: Register for ERAS Application System
JULY 1: ERAS application system open for data entry
JULY 15: Programs can begin review of ERAS applications.
SEPTEMBER — NOVEMBER: Application Deadline (varies by program)
SEPTEMBER: NRMP match opens for registration
DECEMBER: NRMP rank order list deadline
BEGINNING OF JANUARY: Match Day
6) How do I sign up for the match?
Visit the National Resident Matching Program website (http://www.nrmp.org/) to register for the match. It is a $50 fee to register and enter the rank list.
7) Are all fellowship programs included in the match?
No. There are several programs including the military sites that are not included in the match.
8) Is there an electronic application process like ERAS for residency?
Yes. The AMSSM will begin using ERAS for the application process beginning June of 2013 for the 2014 match class. See AMSSM website for more details.
9) How do I strengthen my application?
A PDF of the ERAS application, available on the AMSSM website, can be used as a guide during residency to exemplify what program directors expect in qualified candidates. Experience and interest at an early level, presentations at local/regional/national meetings and attending AMSSM conferences can help set you apart during the process. Meeting program directors and getting involved at the AMSSM Annual Meeting is also a great way to promote your application and learn more about the individual programs.
10) Should I do an away rotation?
This is always a difficult decision and should not be made without a lot of thought. Generally, it is a good idea to get to know the programs that interest you. It is beneficial to understand the day-to-day activities of the fellowship when making your decision for rank lists. A great way to gain that understanding is through elective rotations.