As I began the interview process, I reflected on the qualities I most wanted in a residency program. While many of the top anesthesiology programs in the country provide excellent training, there were a few factors that really made WashU stand out. I was born and raised, and attended college and medical school in the Midwest. While this location wasn’t an absolute necessity, it is nice having family and friends in the region for weekend visits during a busy residency schedule. Also, after completing medical school in Chicago, I was looking for a city where it would be convenient to live and commute, and St. Louis checks that box.
Additionally, I wanted a program where I would receive excellent clinical training, and graduate as a confident and skilled physician. At WashU, we are able to take care of a wide range of patients, from healthy pediatric patients at St. Louis Children’s Hospital to organ transplant patients at Barnes-Jewish Hospital. We are exposed to a wide scope of sub-specialties, including OB, pain, pediatrics, trauma, ICU, cardiac, transplant, and regional—which allows residents the opportunity to develop a strong foundation in all areas of anesthesia as well as early exposure to sub-specialties.
For me, the relationships between the residents was the deciding factor for choosing WashU. On my interview day, I remember the resident leading the hospital tour running into her co-residents and they were so excited to see each other. In talking with the residents throughout the interview day, it was clear there were strong friendships amongst the residents built through shared experiences both inside and outside the hospital. Now in my third year, I really appreciate my co-residents for their support and friendship. Residency is challenging and it’s important to have people to share your experiences with, especially people that are going through them too. I know that I have relationships that will last not only through residency, but for a lifetime.