New-Residents-updateAt The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, it’s all about options. Our General Surgery residents continue to develop all the core competencies needed to be strong medical leaders because they’re exposed to a wide variety of cases in nine surgical divisions in different medical settings, including our seven hospitals, a growing list of outpatient locations, Nationwide Children’s Hospital and rural settings.

As our interns move through their General Surgery rotations, they’re able to customize curriculum to match their career goals. Our expanded OR Coaching program and motivated mentors give them timely feedback and constructive ideas for skill improvement to accelerate their readiness for independent surgery. There’s also a popular leadership elective (LEAD in Surgery) and a Professional Development and Research Training Program (RTP), as well as nearly unlimited opportunities for collaboration with experts across the medical center and university. In the end, each General Surgery training path can be as unique as the individual.

Of course, there are intangibles and other factors that also matter.

Incoming resident William “Taylor” Head, MD, PhD, lists Ohio State’s phenomenal training in an expanding academic environment and the support and encouragement of individualized research interests as reasons for selecting our program but adds, “A less obvious reason I chose Ohio State is the camaraderie between the General Surgery residents, in addition to the other residencies. It is important to me that I train in a place where residents support and care for each other fully.”

“I can’t imagine a better environment to develop as a surgeon, scientist and educator,” say Carl Engelke, MD, PhD, as he notes the training program’s “culture of ambition and support.” However, when making his residency decision, Dr. Engelke was also drawn to the benefits for his family. “Columbus will be an amazing city for my family; I can envision my daughter growing up here and my wife performing with the excellent classical music scene.”

It's clear that Ashley Aldridge, MD, also discovered appealing factors both inside and outside the hospital that influenced her decision. As she explains, “I was drawn to the Department of Surgery at Ohio State because of its excellent reputation and dedication to producing leaders in surgery. There was also the focus on robust, forward-thinking surgical training, a spirit of collegiality, high-quality patient care, a supportive work environment, financial stability and immense resources and research opportunities.”

She added more benefits to her list as well. “I was able to appreciate the enthusiasm the faculty and residents had for the program on interview day, and I knew that I wanted to train in this environment. Also, Columbus is one of the fastest growing cities in the Midwest, and I believe that this will be a smart place to spend 5-7 years in training as it continues to expand and develop with the wide array of resources it provides.”

Our city was also a factor for Ian Garbarine, MD, who will be coming to us from Raleigh, North Carolina. “Columbus drew me to Ohio State,” he says. “It combines the benefits of a large city — from professional sports teams and cultural attractions to distinctive restaurants and indoor and outdoor activities — all with the ease of suburban living. I also enjoy its midwestern hospitality, changing seasons and beauty.” Of course, our location is just a bonus. “I chose Ohio State for a myriad of reasons,” says Dr. Garbarine. “Key among them was its reputation for training confident and competent surgeons ready to tackle any fellowship. When combined with the exceptional clinical opportunities, a culture of innovation in surgical training and the genuine camaraderie between residents apparent in my interview, I feel tremendously fortunate to train at Ohio State.”

He’ll be joined by other residents who are equally enthusiastic about their choice. Chinaemelum “Chidinma” Akpunonu, MD, mentions Ohio State’s dedication to diversity, inclusion and anti-racism as a particularly appealing quality and notes, “I wanted to become a part of a program that truly cares for and supports its residents. I wanted to become a part of a community that helps to shape individuals into their best selves.” Adds Daniel Bacon, MD, “Ohio State is the only training program that I couldn’t identify a weakness. Training and serving here will be one of the greatest privileges of my life.”

While seconding many of the program advantages, there is a history of positive experiences fueling the enthusiasm that Dorothy “Dottie” Sterns, MD, has for her upcoming residency. “I chose The Ohio State University General Surgery Residency Program because Ohio State is a world-renowned institution that prioritizes innovation and community-building. Most of my family members have attended Ohio State for various degrees, and it was finally time for me to become a Buckeye — plus Brutus is the best mascot ever!”

We couldn’t agree more with so many of these positive sentiments, and we look forward to welcoming all these new Buckeye surgeons to the 2022-23 residency class at the Ohio State Department of Surgery this summer. The class includes:

Categoricals – Chinaemelum Akpunonu, Ashley Aldridge, Daniel Bacon, Carl Engelke, Ian Garbarine, William Head and Dorothy Stearns

Preliminaries – Elizabeth Barmash, Matthew Lierz, Nicholas Lipari, Matthew Rodier and Vivian Xu

View the resident roster (PDF)