Core Career Advisors

  • Core Advisor- Allison Cotton Biography

    Dr. Cottons profile imageDr. Cotton was born in Austin, TX and raised in Dallas.  Much to her Texas Longhorn family's horror, she attended the University of Oklahoma, where she cheered for the Sooners and received degrees in Classical Culture and Spanish.  Shortly after graduation, she took a job as a distance learning high school Spanish teacher and taught kids all over the state of Texas how to conjugate verbs for two years.  While this was great fun, she eventually turned her attention back toward her lifelong goal of becoming a physician.  She attended medical school at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, and this is also where she completed residency in Psychiatry and fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.  While in Little Rock, she was an active member of the Little Rock Salsa community, and she often taught Latin dance to couples and groups.  Her passion lies in teaching, which is why she pursued her first job out of training at UNR, where the position of Clerkship Director was available.  Since moving to Reno in August 2019, she has fallen in love with the city and surrounding area as well as with UNR and its culture of diversity and inclusion.  In her spare time, she loves cooking and baking, and she is always up to date on who is doing well on The Great British Baking Show.  She lives with her husband and two dogs, Red and Kizzy.  She also enjoys reading, refinishing old furniture, and painting mandalas on anything that happens to be laying around. 

    Email Allison

Specialty Information

  • USMLE Data
    USMLE Data
    UNR Med 2013 - 2019 U.S. Allopathic Seniors (2020)
    Step Matched Step Matched Unmatched
    Step 1 Mean  221.5 Step 1 Mean  227 216
    Step 2 Mean  235.8 Step 2 Mean  241 229
     Criteria  UNR Med 25th 50th 75th
    Mean # of programs on rank order list 5.5 9.4 10.6 12.0
    Mean # of programs ranked in specialty 5.5 8.9 10.2 11.5
    Mean # of research experiences 2.1 2.3 2.8 3.3
    Mean # of volunteer experiences 6.2 5.9 6.7 7.7
    Mean Step 1 Score 221.5 219.2 223.0 229.0
    Mean Step 2 Score 235.0 235.8 238.5 241.8

    Charting Outcomes of the Match  | (3rd Party Document Download)

  • Outcomes of the 2020 Match
    Outcomes of the 2020 Match
     Year # Programs # Positions Offered # Unfilled Programs # U.S. Senior Applicants # Total Applicants % Filled US Seniors % Filled Total 

    310 1858 12 1314 2798 61.2% 98.90%
  • Does Step 2 score influence rank?

    Program Dependent

  • Should Applicants Do Away Rotations?

    Yes, particularly if you are strongly interested in a program or location.

  • UNR Med Away Rotation Placements 2013-2019
    • Montana
    • University of Arizona College of Medicine - Phoenix
    • University of Arizona COM
    • University of California, Davis
    • University of California, Los Angeles
    • University of California, Los Angeles-Harbor
    • University of California, San Diego
    • University of California, San Francisco - Fresno Campus
    • University of Colorado SOM
    • University of New Mexico
    • University of Texas-San Antonio
    • University of Utah
    • University of Washington School of Medicine
    • Weill Cornell Medical College NY
  • Application Strategies


    • Some research/scholarship is helpful for academic/larger University programs                                              

    Personal Statement

    • The personal statement is especially important in Psychiatry.
    • Psychiatry programs are looking for answers to the following questions:
    • What attracts this applicant to Psychiatry, in as specific a manner as possible?
    • What are the applicant’s goals in Psychiatry?
    • Convey something about who you are, your values, what interests and excites them about the field, what makes you unique, add extracurricular activities if relevant.                                                                   

    Letters of Recommendation

    • Three (3) letters are recommended with 1 from within the specialty.
    • A Chair’s letter is not required.
    • Letters from Internal Medicine, Family Medicine, and Pediatrics can be relevant
    • Letters should come from a faculty member who has worked closely with you clinically and who can be specific.                                

    Application Timing

    • Programs begin reviewing applicants when ERAS opens in September
    • Programs begin offering interviews in October   


    Program interviews are from late October-Mid-January

  • Online Resources
  • Matched Programs


    • U Nevada Reno SOM
    • U Arizona COM-Tucson


    • U Nevada Reno SOM
    • University of Hawaii


    • Loyola Unv Med Ctr-IL
    • U Arizona COM-Phoenix
    • U Arizona COM-Phoenix
    • Jackson Memorial Hosp-FL
    • UNLV
    • UNLV


    • UNR Med - Reno
    • University of North Dakota SOM               


    • University of Nevada Affiliated Hospitals-LV                        
    • University of Nevada Affiliated Hospitals-LV                        
    • University of Nevada Affiliated Hospitals-LV                        
    • UNR Med - Reno                             
    • University of Southern California                              
    • UCLA San Fernando Valley VA Greater Health                     
    • UCLA San Fernando Valley VA Greater Health                     
    • Mayo Clinic - MN                             
    • UC Davis Medical Center


    • UC Irvine Medical Center
    • Kaweah Delta Health Care Dist-Visalia
    • UC San Diego Medical Center
    •  UC San Diego Medical Center
    • UNR Med - Reno


    • University of Utah
    • University of North Carolina Hospitals
    • University of Nevada Affil Hospitals-LV
    • Tufts Medical Center - MA
    • San Antonio Uniformed Svsc Health Educ Consortium


    • Loma Linda University


    • University of Nevada Affil Hospitals-LV
    • University of Nevada Affil Hospitals-LV


    • UNR Med
    • University of Oklahoma - Tulsa
    • University of Nevada Affil Hospitals-LV
    • University of Nevada Affil Hospitals-LV