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Residency Planning FAQs - Pediatrics

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

A major reason for entering the field of Pediatrics is the ability to take on the role of child advocate. This gives the physician the opportunity to have a positive impact on the life of a child, a community of children, and potentially on society as a whole. The challenge of communication with infants, children, young adults and families is also very appealing. The privilege of watching and guiding growth and development is particularly rewarding.

What are the top 10 training programs nationally?

This question is difficult to answer because each individual applicant should consider his/her own top ten in relation to learning style and needs.

However, in 2009 US News and World Report Ranked the Following as the 10 Best Children's Hospitals:

  • Children's Hospital Denver
  • Children's Hospital Boston
  • Childrens Hospital Los Angeles
  • Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Children's Medical Center Dallas
  • Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
  • Johns Hopkins Children's Center Baltimore
  • New York-Presbyterian/Morgan Stanley-Komansky Children's Hospital
  • St. Louis Children's Hospital-Washington University
  • Texas Children's Hospital Houston

What are some good regional programs?

Again, this needs to be discussed on an individual basis.

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

  • National reputation for being a leader in the move to competency-based education that is being spearheaded by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education and the American Board of Medical Specialties
  • Balance between primary and tertiary care
  • Curriculum that is dynamic and responsive to societal needs (i.e. ethics, advocacy)
  • Supportive environment
  • Faculty attention to individual learning needs of residents

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

  • Letters of recommendation from people who know you well
  • Dean's letter
  • Transcript
  • Unique background, interests, contributions
  • USMLE scores

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

  • Pediatrics is competitive so applications should be sent in early Fall
  • You should look at an average of 10-12 programs
  • You should interact with as many housestaff as possible when you visit various programs to get a real feel for the program
  • Base your final decision on how well you fit in with the people you met and how comfortable you felt within that learning environment

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

  • The program director for pediatrics, Carol Carraccio, MD, is available to meet with all students interested in pediatric careers.
  • Erin Giudice, MD, who is both the associate program director and the clerkship director, is also happy to meet with students.
  • Chair Steven Czinn, MD, meets with all students who apply in pediatrics as a prelude to writing a departmental letter for the ERAS application.
  • The Department also sponsors a get together in the spring of each year with students interested in pediatric careers to address questions.
  • Our residency coordinator, Pat Schmidt (ext 8-6662) can also help direct students to appropriate faculty.

Visit the Department of Pediatrics Website