Mostly Cloudy
79°
Mostly Cloudy
Nashville, TN
Featured Image

At Thursday’s Match Day, School of Medicine student Karl Bezak jumps into the arms of his father, Karl W. Bezak, after learning he’s headed for Weill Cornell Medical Center. (photo by Joe Howell)

Match Day provides long-awaited answers

BY: CRAIG BOERNER AND CAROLE BARTOO

3/19/2010 - The largest graduating class in Vanderbilt University School of Medicine history delivered big results Thursday in Light Hall as 116 ‘matches’ with some of the country’s top residency programs provided a spark for the next generation of physicians.

Scott Rodgers, M.D., associate dean for Medical Student Affairs, randomly selected student envelopes containing their residency matches, which proved to be a laundry list of the country’s top programs.

“I feel like this is the best match we’ve had,” Rodgers said after the ceremony. “In my 10 years, it is the best I have ever seen.”

During Thursdays Match Day, Evan Silverstein announces that he matched at Vanderbilt in, naturally, Ophthalmology.  (photo by Joe Howell)

During Thursdays Match Day, Evan Silverstein announces that he matched at Vanderbilt in, naturally, Ophthalmology. (photo by Joe Howell)

Match Day, the culmination of a yearlong process that connects students with medical centers and hospitals across the country through the National Residency Match Program (NRMP), is a longstanding tradition filled with joy, excitement, accomplishment, occasional dejection and lots of nerves.

There were some icebreakers along the way, thanks to some creative dance moves from excited students, proud parents running to the front to hug their children, a trumpet interlude, a cowboy hat and a black pug pawing at the envelope on behalf of its owner.

Walter Wakwe jumps for joy after his wife, Candy, reveals they are headed Emory University School of Medicine. (photo by Joe Howell)

Walter Wakwe jumps for joy after his wife, Candy, reveals they are headed Emory University School of Medicine. (photo by Joe Howell)

Thirty-one members of the 2010 class are staying at Vanderbilt for their residency.

Match Day is generally known as the ‘first day of the rest of your life’ for students like Annie Antar, who coincidentally also had the first day of her life at Vanderbilt when she was born here on Nov. 12, 1980.

The daughter of a University of Tennessee mechanical and aerospace engineering professor and a theoretical physicist, Antar is one of 14

Jared Burlison reacts after learning he matched at the University of New Mexico. (photo by Joe Howell)

Jared Burlison reacts after learning he matched at the University of New Mexico. (photo by Joe Howell)

Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) students graduating in May. The MSTP program prepares M.D./Ph.D students for faculty and research positions of leadership in biomedical sciences.

Antar, who is going to Johns Hopkins Hospital for internal medicine, said interviewing at the country’s leading medical centers has proven to her how well Vanderbilt prepares its students and supports them throughout the process.

“I am just really grateful to have been able to spend my time at Vanderbilt and learn from the people here, from the sanitation workers to the patients to my Ph.D. mentor and labmates to the clinical and basic science faculty and, of course, my fellow students,” Antar said.

Rhea Boyd gets a hug after learning she matched at UC San Francisco, in Pediatrics. (photo by Joe Howell)

Rhea Boyd gets a hug after learning she matched at UC San Francisco, in Pediatrics. (photo by Joe Howell)

“I like the feel at Vanderbilt; it feels like a caring community. There's a lot of love here.”

Five couples matched together, including Dan Spratt and Ellie Gordon.

The soon-to-be Spratt family will be heading to Spartanburg, S.C., for a transitional year before moving to New York, where Dan is pursuing radiation oncology at Memorial Sloan-Kettering while Ellie is working to become a dermatologist at NYU School of Medicine.

Lori Singleton rejoices after learning she's headed to Cincinnatti Childrens Hospital.  (photo by Joe Howell)

Lori Singleton rejoices after learning she's headed to Cincinnatti Childrens Hospital. (photo by Joe Howell)

Their chosen fields are among the most competitive for residency slots and to match together is particularly difficult.

They met during their first year of medical school at Vanderbilt and found out they were both Oregon natives. Now the couple is planning a May 2 wedding.

“Vanderbilt is a family oriented atmosphere. It’s nice to have your partner understand when you’re up all night on call,” Spratt said. “We are each others’ biggest fans. She beats me on most tests, and I can cheer her on. It’s been great to go through this together.”

The 2010 graduating class also includes two M.D./J.D. students, one MBA/M.D. student, nine international students and 12 underrepresented minority (URM) students.

Growing up in a family that worked hard and sacrificed so she could succeed, Rhea Boyd said she felt a sense of responsibility to create opportunities in urban communities with her career. For that reason, she has decided to pursue pediatrics with her match at UC San Francisco.

Jonathan Scott is embraced by his wife, Kristin, after learning they are headed to Brigham and Women's Hospital. (photo by Joe Howell)

Jonathan Scott is embraced by his wife, Kristin, after learning they are headed to Brigham and Women's Hospital. (photo by Joe Howell)

“My family is very matriarchal. I've had wonderful examples of women as leaders and been blessed to live in a household filled with laughter and good food,” she said.

“It has always been clear to me that childhood is a defining time in a one's life and to have an impact on the maturation of generations is powerful and really important.”

Boyd credits her mentors for helping her identify residency programs where training in advocacy and policy would also be available.

“It's probably the biggest transition of my life, but Vanderbilt prepares you so well that I feel ready,” she said.

From left, Ann Price, M.D., Jeff Balser, M.D., Ph.D., Bonnie Miller, M.D., and a packed crowd cheer during Match Day. (photo by Joe Howell)

From left, Ann Price, M.D., Jeff Balser, M.D., Ph.D., Bonnie Miller, M.D., and a packed crowd cheer during Match Day. (photo by Joe Howell)


 

©2014 Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Editorial tool created by VUMC Web Development

SEARCH THE REPORTER

EVENTS AND NOTICES

Vanderbilt Farmers Market

Thursdays, 3-6 p.m., Medical Center Plaza


 

 

Vanderbilt University Medical Center