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Residency Planning FAQs - Medicine/Pediatrics (Combined Program)

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Why do students choose to train in your specialty? What is it they find attractive?

Combined medicine-pediatric programs provide an opportunity for a comprehensive training in primary care, though the options for subspecialty careers, academics, and public health remain. A career in med-peds often attracts someone who is committed to caring for both adult and pediatric patients, and who desires to have a variety of professional options following graduation. Med-peds is a wonderful avenue to manage chronic, complicated health problems through the ages and to manage and interact with the family unit as a whole.

What are the top 10 training programs nationally in terms of overall reputation?

Well-respected programs include University of North Carolina, University of Rochester, Baystate Medical Center (Springfield, Massachusetts), University of Minnesota, Baylor College, Indiana University Medical Center, and Duke.

What are some good regional programs?

Good regional programs include University of Maryland, Medical College of Virginia, University of Pittsburgh, University of North Carolina, Duke, Mount Sinai, and Pennsylvania State University.

What are the strengths of the program here at the University of Maryland?

First and foremost, the Maryland program is a unified marriage of two academically strong programs with leaders who are invested in med-peds training. At Maryland, we have “Med-Peds” faculty on staff and a dual-trained Assistant Program Director.

Secondly, the resident body is cohesive both on and off campus. The med-peds residents meet weekly in continuity clinics and as a group, monthly. There is a strong emphasis on evidence-based medicine and social diversity, which is the basis of the monthly meetings. Thirdly, the program - since its inception with the first two residents in July 1994 - has been dynamic and has grown with the residents. It has been the recipient of a Title VII grant, which has provided funding for evidence-based medicine workshops and cultural diversity workshops, and an enhanced curriculum on caring for the underserved. Lastly, our Med-Peds residents are fully integrated into the categorical programs in both specialties, thus ensuring their mastery of the dual curriculum.

What are the factors you look at when evaluating an applicant, from most important to least important?

  • Intellectual capabilities (transcript, academic awards, and USMLE scores)
  • Curiosity (research and personal academic pursuits)
  • Consistent performance clinically (as reflected by clerkship grades, letter of recommendations, Dean’s Letter)
  • Professionalism, interpersonal skills (described as a team player, a good teacher, would want them to care for my family member)
  • Well-balanced background (unique life-experiences, fluency in another language, work and volunteer experiences, etc.)

What advice do you have for University of Maryland students interested in your specialty?

The best advice is to seek out mentorship among faculty, residents, and community physicians and to seek clinical experience in integrated internal medicine-pediatric practices. If you are interested in Med-Peds ask to attend the monthly conference and the individual department’s morning reports and Grand Rounds. The internet is also a good source for information.

The following websites and links provide a wealth of information:  

If students have more questions, whom in your department should they contact and how can they reach them?

Susan D. Wolfsthal, MD
Med-Peds Residency Program Co-Director

Carol Carraccio, MD
Med-Peds Residency Program Co-Director

UMMC Med/Peds website