General Surgery Residency

Program Director Message

TerhuneWelcome to the Vanderbilt General Surgery Residency Website!

We welcome your interest and inquiries. Currently, there are greater than 200 ACGME-approved programs for residency education in General Surgery, and we consider ourselves one of many excellent programs among these.

Vanderbilt General Surgery is approved by the Surgical Residency Review Committee (S-RRC) to finish eight chief residents annually. Most (but not all) graduates pursue fellowship training.   

Our primary goal is to train residents who can operate—with confidence and competence. Our chiefs project to average over 1000 cases and exceed operative requirements in all important categories.

We look for diversity on all levels, including diversity of interests-- basic science, translational research, clinical outcomes, health policy, education, private practice or even global surgery.  Research is encouraged.  Most—but not all—of our residents spend two years in research. (Please know that on applying, research years are not guaranteed.)  Thirteen of our current 53 categorical residents are in research years, spending between one and three years, and several are pursuing additional degrees. These residents are encouraged and supported to attend local, regional and national meetings and give presentations.

Vanderbilt University Medical Center boasts a state-of-the-art facility, a Children's Hospital, and a VA Hospital connected by a walkway. Some residents also rotate at St. Thomas Hospital and Williamson Medical Center. The S-RRC approved our elective in global surgery--Vanderbilt International Surgery (VIS).  This 4-week rotation at Kijabe Hospital in Kenya, ninety minutes northwest of Nairobi, is directed by pediatric surgeon Dr. Erik Hansen, the Site Director for our VIS program in Kijabe.

Eskind Biomedical Library has an electronic collection second to none, and all residents have access to this.  We are juxtaposed next to Vanderbilt University, a beautiful undergraduate campus which also is home to 10 graduate and professional schools, the Vanderbilt School of Medicine being one of these.

Vanderbilt is located in Nashville, Tennessee, a fantastic place to live!

But our number one strength is our people. A collegial atmosphere exists between the attending surgeons, the departmental leadership, and the residents. We work hard. We support and help one another.

If Vanderbilt sounds appealing to you, forward your application to us through ERAS. Applications are carefully screened using letters, transcript, activities, research, USMLE scores, and awards. We generally receive applications from ~ 800 graduates of US medical schools and an equal number of international graduates. We interview ~ 80 candidates; we match 8. We take your time and interest seriously.

  • We have 4 interview days scheduled for the Match season this year: November 18 & 29, 2016, and December 13 & 16, 2016. Each candidate is interviewed by two faculty members and a senior/chief resident and has a short chat with a chair and a program director. Interview day includes a program presentation, a video tour, and a luncheon that concludes by 2:30pm; therefore candidates are free to depart mid-afternoon.
  • We have an informal get-together from 6pm to 8pm on the evening prior to the actual interview day, and this is hosted off campus. Families and significant others are welcome.
  • For the interview dates on Fridays-- November 18 & December 16, Grand Rounds will be held at 7 am. All candidates are invited to attend.

Our phone number is (615) 343-6642.

Feel free to contact any of us in the Surgical Education Office.

For the Surgical Education Team,
Kyla P. Terhune, M.D., M.B.A., F.A.C.S.; Program Director, General Surgery


Residency Coordinator: Debra Hinton

Department Education Specialist: Jessica Padgett, M.Ed.

Clerkship Director: Steven Eskind, MD

Site Director for Saint Thomas Hospital: R.S. Martin III, MD

Site Director for Kijabe, Kenya: Erik Hansen, MD, MPH

Associate Program Director: Timothy Nunez, MD

Associate Program Director: Kamran Idrees, MD

Assistant Program Director:  Christina Bailey, MD, MSCI

Program Director: Kyla P. Terhune, MD

This page was last updated August 8, 2016 and is maintained by