Penn Surgery

Colon and Rectal Surgery Residency Program

Policies and Procedures Manual

Resident Eligibility, NRMP, Recruitment, and Selection Policy

  1. As per ACGME Institutional Requirements, applicants for residency training in Colon and Rectal Surgery at the University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS) must meet one of the following qualifications:
    1. Graduate of medical school in the United States and Canada accredited by the LCME or the American Osteopathic Association (AOA).
    2. Graduate of an international medical school, meeting one of the following qualifications:
      1. Have a currently valid Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) certificate or
      2. Have a full and unrestricted license to practice medicine in a U.S. licensing jurisdiction
      3. Graduate of international medical school that has completed a Fifth Pathway program provided by an LCME-accredited medical school.
  2. The residency applicant will meet all of the following eligibility requirements:
    1. The applicant must be on track to successfully complete an ACGME- or RCPSC-accredited residency program in general surgery of not less than five years by the end of the current academic year or must have completed such a residency program in good-standing within the previous five years.
    2. The applicant must be on track to complete the educational requirements to sit for American Board of Surgery (ABS) certification by the end of the current academic year or be certified by the American Board of Surgery (ABS).
    3. The applicant must be able to perform the duties required of the program.
    4. The applicant must demonstrate English language proficiency to the satisfaction of the Program Director.
    5. The applicant must be eligible to obtain a medical license in the state of Pennsylvania.
    6. The applicant must submit an application to the program through the Electronic Resident Application System (ERAS) and must participate in the NRMP.
    7. The applicant must express a commitment to complete the entire training program.
    8. The applicant will be expected to pass a pre-matriculation drug test as administered by the UPHS Drug Testing Program and a satisfactory criminal background check (GME Policy #III-G House Staff Onboarding, UPHS Policy #02-01-14 and #02-01-13).
  3. Applicants who are foreign medical graduates must meet the following additional requirements:
    1. An appropriate Visa is required prior to the beginning of training. The Office of GME handles all Visa requests pertaining to trainees from international/foreign medical schools. UPHS accepts Visas in only two categories: J-1 or H1-B. The Office of GME only sponsors clinical J-1 Visas. Any training program wishing to sponsor a person on an H1-B Visa must contact the University of Pennsylvania Office of International Programs.
    2. Foreign medical graduates must have current ECFMG certification in order to obtain a training license in the state of Pennsylvania.
    3. The program will provide incoming house staff from outside the US with appropriate orientation that will familiarize them with local culture and assist them with the acclimation process.
  4. The colon and rectal surgery residency program at UPHS will participate in the NRMP match process. If the program does not fill through the match, open positions may subsequently be filled from the pool of unmatched applicants, or other sources, as long as they meet institutional standards.
  5. All resident applicants must be screened against Office of the Inspector General (OIG) and General Services Administration (GSA) lists; individuals listed by a federal agency as excluded, suspended, or otherwise ineligible for participation in federal programs are ineligible for training at UPHS.
  6. Completed ERAS applications received prior to October 1 will be reviewed by the program director, and applicants will be selected for interviews based on review of:
    1. Confirmation of eligibility requirements
    2. Overall performance during general surgery residency training, based on letters of recommendation from current residency program director, department chair/chief, and other faculty members who are qualified to comment on the applicant’s clinical performance
    3. Overall academic performance in medical school, including medical school transcript and Dean’s letter
    4. Curriculum vitae
    5. Performance on USMLE examinations
    6. Performance of American Board of Surgery In-Training examinations
    7. Prior research and publication experience, including oral presentations
    8. Awards and honors
    9. Written personal statement
  7. Two dates for interviews will be made available to applicants invited to interview on a first come-first serve basis. During the interviews, the applicant will attend an informational session with the program director and have the opportunity to ask questions regarding the program, interview with each faculty member in the Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery, and have the opportunity to meet the current resident(s).
    1. Interviews will focus on each applicant’s:
    2. Verbal communication skills
    3. Motivation to pursue a career in colon and rectal surgery
    4. Maturity and emotional stability
    5. Honesty, integrity, and reliability
    6. Perceived ability to choose goals and to complete the tasks necessary to achieve those goals
    7. Commitment to complete the entire training program
  8. Once all interviews have been completed, the Resident Selection Committee, which consists of all faculty members in the Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery, will generate a rank order list which will then be submitted to the NRMP. This will be based on review of the criteria listed in Section 6 above, as well as the overall impression from the interview as listed in Section 7 above.

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