Fourth-Year Med Students Make a Match

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Five GW medical students posing together holding white envelopes

When the clock struck noon on March 15, George Washington University (GW) School of Medicine and Health Sciences (SMHS) fourth-year MD student Jacklyn Omorodion let out a scream and jumped in the air, quickly becoming engulfed in hugs from her family. She had matched at her No. 1 choice for residency in combined pediatrics and genetics: Boston Children’s Hospital.

When she got to GW, traveling all the way from Toronto to attend medical school in the states, Omorodion wasn’t sure she would choose to study pediatrics, even though she admits everyone else knew it would be her specialty. “I ended up loving it,” she said. “I’ve always loved working with kids.”

A father and mother hug their daughter and smile

Omorodion said she hopes to combine her passion for pediatrics with her undergraduate major of genetics. “After I did some electives and rotations here, I knew that’s what I wanted to do and there’s a lot of overlap between pediatrics and genetics,” she said.

Now she has the opportunity to live in a new U.S. city, one with “an amazing pediatrics program and an amazing genetics program,” she said. “I can’t wait, I just can’t wait.”

Every year students gather in Ross Hall, surrounded by family, friends, and faculty to celebrate the milestone. At noon, medical students across the country simultaneously receive and open their envelopes from the National Residency Matching Program, a nonprofit corporation established to provide a uniform date of appointment to positions in graduate medical education in the United States.

"We’re truly excited for you, we’re proud of everything that you’ve accomplished, and our goal is for you to go out and make a difference. Make a difference in people’s lives, make a difference in communities where you serve, and do us proud because we’re incredibly proud of you,” Jeffery S. Akman, MD ’81, RESD ’85, vice president for health affairs, Walter A. Bloedorn Professor of Administrative Medicine, and dean of SMHS, said to a full room before the big reveal.

“We are confident when you go into your residency you will have a great foundation from which to start your training,” added Richard J. Simons, MD, senior associate dean for MD Programs. “I wish you well in your journey and enjoy this special day.”

A GW medical student posing his wife and two children and holding a white envelope

Samuel Swenson, his wife Tessa, and their children, 2-year-old Pierce and 4-month-old Lucy, were gathered together to find out at which orthopaedic residency program he would match.

When he opened his envelope, he leaned in close to his family to shout “Iowa. We’re going to Iowa!”

The University of Iowa program in Iowa City had been Swenson’s top pick since a summer away rotation. “It’s one of the best, if not the best, ortho programs,” he said. “When I rotated there last summer, it was just a stellar program. … It’s going to be a great experience.”

Katerina Salnikova, who hails from the Chicago suburbs, also landed her top choice for residency in neurology: Johns Hopkins University. “I went to Hopkins as an undergraduate, and I had a professor who was my inspiration to pursue neurology,” she said. “Neurology allows you to be very interactive with patients, and she was really a fixture in her patients’ lives.”

When asked if this moment was bittersweet after dedicating four years to medical school, Jené Carter said the sweet definitely outweighed the bitter, but that the past four years had been quite a journey

“I had a baby my first year, and there’s been a lot that has happened these past four years. It’s a little surreal being done. But it’s more sweet than bitter,” she said.

Carter is off one a new journey to the United Family Medicine residency program through the Allina Health System in St. Paul.

“In family medicine you get to work with adults, with children, and with women who are pregnant, and so having the skills to do all of that and be available to work in lower resource areas and do mission work is something I want to do,” she said. “I’m excited, nervous, overwhelmed.”

A hand places a pin on a map of the United States

The Class of 2019 matched at institutions including NYU School of Medicine, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Mayo Clinic School of Graduate Medical Education, Yale School of Medicine, Penn State Hershey Medical Center, and Vanderbilt University Medical Center, among many others. Seven students will continue their training at GW, and one will train at Children’s National Health System.

More information on Match Day 2019

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