Overweight and trying to get into medical school

Sorry for the lack of posts lately, but happily, will be picking up over the next several months. I am going to start going with shorter, rather than longer posts, to try to get up to a weekly posting rate. These will continue to be on a variety of topics.

This recent one comes from a post on SDN. This will be the last medically oriented post for some time. I may begin to pick up food; the next food post will have a medical tie-in, but I will depart from there. I even plan on having within the next month or so a post on a proposed solution to the intelligent design/evolution debate. Keep checking things out if you like what you see! Things will be getting much more active over the next couple of months.

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Do you think overweight/obese applicants are at a disadvantage in med school interviews?

The answer to your question is an obvious yes. Overweight/obese people are at a disadvantage for medical school interviews. Medicine isn’t an exception to the years of studies showing that being overweight is a disadvantage in the hiring process, to promotions, to pay raises; admissions to schools are not qualitatively different from these other parts of life.

Few people will personally admit to being responsible for the discrimination. The infamous quote by Watson that “whenever you interview fat people, you feel bad, because you know you’re not going to hire them” is an exception to the general rule of self-delusion. For most people, it’s always “somebody else”. A recent study showed that even many companies and individuals, which actively recruit African Americans, will, when confronted by identical resumes, one with white and the other with black-sounding names–they will offer interviews to the white sounding names at a rate of almost 50% higher.

Discrimination often operates unconsciously and is probably more effective when it is unconscious than when it is conscious. When “nobody is doing it” is when it is impossible to be accountable to anyone–even oneself. To me, I prefer Watson’s monstrous claim; at least with Watson one can address and discuss it and try to get to the heart of the problem. You cannot address the issue with someone who does it and denies it.

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One thought on “Overweight and trying to get into medical school

  1. Warren

    This is why I sometimes prefer openly racist right wingers over well intentioned mealy mouthed liberal racists.

    Reply

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