Med Students Experience Own March Madness
March Madness isn’t just about college basketball. It’s also the month when medical school seniors nationwide learn whether they have matched with the specialties and residency programs of their choice for graduate medical education (GME).
On March 20, fourth-year medical students at Creighton University and 124 other medical schools around the country, learned more about their futures, including where they would be spending the next several years.
At Creighton, there were a few tears of disappointment but, by and large, big smiles, hugs, and excitement about the future prevailed. Andrew Stevens was so elated with his match (emergency medicine at Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis) that he lifted a startled Cam E. Enarson, M.D., M.B.A., dean of the School of Medicine and vice president for health sciences, several inches off the ground.
“I think a lot of people got their first choices today,” one student said. “Creighton is a great school.”
The matches took place through the National Resident Matching Program, a private, nonprofit corporation established in 1952 to provide a uniform date for appointments.
A total of 113 Creighton students participated in this year’s program (six students placed through other match programs). In the months leading up to Match Day, these soon-to-be doctors investigated GME opportunities, completed face-to-face interviews, and then listed in order of preference the residency programs in which they would most like to train. At the same time, residency program officials conducted their own extensive reviews of applicants and submitted their top selections to fill first-year residency openings. A computer ultimately made the final match-ups.
Creighton students matched in 17 specialty areas in 31 states. Internal Medicine and Pediatrics were the most popular specialties with 16 matches each, followed by obstetrics/gynecology (15), general surgery (15), diagnostic radiology (nine), anesthesiology (nine), family practice (nine) and emergency medicine (eight). Nine students will participate in fulltime residencies at Creighton University Medical Center.
Outside Nebraska, programs with which students matched included Mayo Clinic, Georgetown University Hospital, Oregon Health Sciences University, Rush University, New York University, Washington University, University of California – Davis, University of California – Irvine, University of California – Los Angeles, and Northwestern University.