Match Code of Conduct and Professionalism 

Thank you for your interest in an Society of Surgical Oncology (SSO) Match. The SSO maintains the highest professional standards in the conduct of its Matches and in its interactions with all participants. The SSO expects all Match participants to conduct their affairs in an ethical and professionally responsible manner.

Demonstrating Professional Behavior

Participants must demonstrate professional behavior throughout the application, interview, and matching processes by observing practices that protect the right of applicants and programs to determine their selections in the absence of unwarranted pressure and by respecting the binding nature of a match commitment. Failure to demonstrate professional behavior could result in a Match violation and sanctions.

Consequences of Engaging in Unprofessional Behavior

Failure to comply with all the terms and conditions of the Agreement, whether intentionally or not, may result in an investigation and the imposition of penalties. The violations include, but are not limited to:

  1. After a Match, an applicant who obtained a position does not accept that position. The listing of a program on the applicant's certified rank list and the listing of an applicant on a program's rank list establishes a binding commitment to accept/offer an appointment if a match occurs and to start training in good faith on the date specified in the appointment contract.
  2. A program director asks an applicant about ranking preferences or for information about other programs where the applicant has applied or interviewed.
  3. An applicant with a binding commitment applies for, discusses, interviews for, or accepts a concurrent-year position in another program. Similarly, a program director discusses, interviews for, or offers a position to an applicant prior. The Match Participation Agreement prohibits applicants and programs from releasing each other from a match commitment without authorization from the SSO.
  4. During the application, interview, and/or matching process, an applicant fails to provide complete, timely, and accurate information to programs. Similarly, a program fails to provide complete, timely, and accurate information to applicants including a copy of the contract they will be expected to sign if matched to the program and all pertinent information about institutional policies and eligibility requirements for appointment. Programs must provide all such information prior to the Rank Order List Certification Deadline. 

Professionalism and Communication

Interactions between applicants and program directors during the application, interview, and matching processes are an essential component of professionalism. Program directors and applicants may express interest in each other but may not solicit statements implying a commitment. However, some applicants may misinterpret statements of encouragement to signify a commitment on the part of the program, and some programs may make misleading statements.

Such statements are not binding, and neither applicants nor program directors should rely on them when creating their rank order lists. Program directors, institutional officials, and medical school officials should avoid making misleading statements and at all times display a professional code of behavior in their interactions with applicants.

Withdrawal

If you wish to withdraw from the match, you must email the SSO Training and Education department at fellowship@surgonc.org before the Rank List Deadline for the current match year.

Applicants who fail to or choose not to submit their rank list, will not be included in the ranking process and will be listed as “unmatched”.

Disclaimer

The information submitted to the SSO on both applicant program information and rank order lists is confidential. It is the policy of the SSO not to disclose such information in any manner that permits individual identification of either applicants or programs. In addition, information contained in the SSO’s match system is confidential and available only to the SSO and other authorized users. Unauthorized use or disclosure of such information to persons not entitled to access it shall be considered a violation of this agreement. Requests for unpublished data or research files must be submitted and are thoroughly reviewed by the SSO.

Resources

Resources available online can help guide Match participants through the interviewing and matching processes.