More than 120 medical students learn their residency destinations in annual celebration

March 18, 2016

Match Day 2016Four years of preparation and hard work. Countless hours spent studying. Exams. Clinical experiences in numerous departments and hospitals. Residency interviews around the nation. These experiences all led to one moment for 123 OHSU medical students.

Match Day. 

An annual rite of passage for U.S. medical students and other applicants, Match Day is coordinated by the National Resident Matching Program. Each year at the same time nationwide, nearly 17,000 medical school seniors simultaneously open sealed white envelopes containing a single sheet of paper with details about where each student will pursue the next phase of their medical training.

"It seems crazy, to many, this process, but to medical students, it's just another step in a difficult but rewarding road," wrote David Steinhardt earlier this week on StudentSpeak. 

Today, 123 M.D. students met for the culmination of their undergraduate medical education. Surrounded by friends, family members, classmates and faculty mentors, these students waited for the moment –celebrated simultaneously nationwide –when they would learn where they would be spending the next three to seven years of their lives in residency training, or graduate medical education. 

Match Day 2016At the appointed time, students found their envelope, and gradually the room filled with sounds of sighs, laugher and chatter.

"Congratulations to the class of 2016 as they move into the next phase of their medical careers," said George Mejicano, M.D., M.S., senior associate dean for education, OHSU School of Medicine. "Wherever our new physicians go next, we are confident that their OHSU education has prepared them to positively impact the health and well-being of their patients."

This group of newly-minted physicians will play an integral role in the changing health care delivery system in Oregon and beyond. School of Medicine students matched in 19 different disciplines. Twenty-nine will remain in Oregon, of which 19 will remain at OHSU. Sixty-eight students total will stay in the western region. Seventeen students will head to the northeast, 27 to the central region and 11 to the south. 

Match Day 2016In terms of medical specialty, 2016 results show that 56 students chose to pursue residency in primary care, which represents 44 percent of this year's class and includes the fields of internal medicine, pediatrics and family medicine. Some of the students selecting internal medicine and pediatrics are likely to go on to sub-specialize and, thus, not all these new physicians will end up practicing primary care. Nevertheless, the overall amount and trend bode well for ramping up to meet the demand for primary care physicians. Graduates in family medicine are likely to remain in this primary care discipline. 

For Alina Satterfield (above left), a family medicine residency match at PeaceHealth SW Washington Medical Center represents the culmination of a life-long dream to become a family physician and follow in her parents' footsteps as a local community physician. "This is a challenging and exciting time to enter family medicine given the enormous changes in our country's health care system," she said.