Vascular Surgery Residency

Program Overview

The Vascular Surgery Residency at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center is a five-year, ACGME-accredited integrated program (mixing general surgery and vascular surgery through the first four years) that admits one resident per year.

Program Director’s Welcome

The Division of Vascular Surgery at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center has a long history of training vascular surgery fellows. In October 2009, RRC approved our institution for an Integrated Vascular Surgery Residency. Our first integrated vascular surgery resident graduated in 2016. This five-year comprehensive clinical training program in Vascular and Endovascular Surgery matches medical students directly into vascular training, general surgery and vascular surgery are incorporated over the five years.

The program is based at Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, with electives available to rotate with division faculty at Mount Nittany Medical Center. A complete schedule of didactic sessions and clinical conferences supplements the patient care and research activities of the Vascular Surgery Service.

The clinical expertise of the division includes all components of the diagnosis and treatment of vascular disorders. Patients with a wide variety of arterial, venous and lymphatic diseases receive evaluation from a whole-patient perspective. The surgical faculty employ numerous methods and technologies for vascular reconstruction in patients requiring invasive therapy, as well as offer medical management for those with milder forms of disease. The entire spectrum of endovascular therapy is provided through the integrated framework of the Heart and Vascular Institute. The Division of Vascular Surgery provides non-invasive vascular testing as an integral part of patient management, and is both nationally and internationally recognized for its excellence.

The academic mission of the division embraces scholarship in both clinical and related basic sciences. The Vascular Surgery Residency trainees have the opportunity to pursue research work that has led to presentation and publication of their work at regional and national conferences. The division participates in major national clinical trials. It is active at all levels in developing quality standards for noninvasive testing.

Our Team

Curriculum

Teaching in the Vascular Surgery Residency is performed using the following teaching methods:

  • Mandatory Conferences (please see “Conference” tab)
  • Mandatory rotation in an attending’s office once per week.
  • Direct teaching in the operating room and during patient care.

Assessment Methods for Residents

  • Verbal feedback during daily rounds and walk rounds
  • Written self-evaluation twice a year
  • Written evaluation by physician assistants at conclusion of rotation
  • Written evaluation by faculty at conclusion of rotation
  • Written evaluation by nurses twice a year
  • Written evaluation by inpatients and outpatients once a month

Program Evaluation Assessment Methods

  • Written evaluation at completion of each rotation
  • Written evaluation of the program at the completion of each year
  • Performance on VSITE examination (yearly)

Level of Supervision

The nighttime and weekend attending call schedule is available to all through SmartWeb and the vascular surgery office. An attending is designated to be the rounder each weekday. The rounder is responsible for all daytime and intra-operative consults and transfers.

Educational Resources

  • American College of Surgeons Fundamentals of Surgery Curriculum
  • Anatomic Exposures in Vascular Surgery
  • Rutherford Vascular Surgery
  • Surgical Council on Resident Education (SCORE)

Training Includes

  • Fluoroscopy training program
  • Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS)
  • Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS)
  • Annual CME funds
  • Travel opportunities
  • Leads and loupes

Rotations

The Vascular Surgery Residency (integrated 0/5 program) rotation schedule includes:

PGY-1

  • Vascular Surgery
  • Trauma
  • Surgical ICU
  • Night Float
  • Anesthesia/Cardiology
  • Plastic Surgery
  • Cardiothoracic (CT) Surgery
  • Heart and Vascular ICU

PGY-2

  • Vascular Surgery
  • Trauma
  • Plastic Surgery
  • Heart and Vascular ICU
  • Community General Surgery
  • Surgical ICU/Anesthesia
  • Surgical Oncology

PGY-3

  • Vascular Surgery
  • Mount Nittany – Vascular
  • Surgical ICU
  • Community General Surgery
  • Interventional Radiology
  • Thoracic Surgery
  • Trauma

PGY-4

  • Vascular Surgery
  • Mount Nittany – Vascular
  • Interventional Radiology
  • Emergency General Surgery
  • Trauma

PGY-5

  • Vascular Surgery
  • Mount Nittany – Vascular

Conferences

Thursday

  • 7 to 8 a.m. weekly: General Surgery Education Lectures
  • 7 to 8 a.m. the second Thursday of each month: HVI Basic Science Lecture
  • 7 to 8 a.m. quarterly: Office of Graduate Medical Education Core Competencies Lecture Series
  • 8 to 9 a.m. weekly: Vascular Teaching Conference
  • 9 to 10 a.m. weekly: Vascular Skills, CBL, Journal Club and Interesting Articles

Friday

  • 7 to 8 a.m. weekly: Vascular Preoperative and Morbidity and Mortality

There are also Surgical and Heart and Vascular Institute Grand Rounds, along with Surgery Morbidity and Mortality.

Vascular Teaching Conference

  • Bi-annual cadaver and simulation lab
  • Vascular science didactic lab
  • Varied lectures by residents, fellows and faculty members

General Surgery Education and Training

  • Topics and location are assigned weekly
  • PGY-1 through PGY-3 residents are required to attend these sessions if deemed relevant by the Assistant Program Director.
  • If sessions are not relevant, vascular skills, case-based learning or sessions in the Vascular Lab will be assigned.

Attendance Requirements

Residents on vacation are excused from all conferences. Other than this exception or other extenuating circumstances previously approved by the Program Director and reported to the Program Coordinator, residents are expected to attend all conferences. If at an off-site rotation, please use the Adobe Connect link to sign into Vascular Teaching Conference and Vascular Preoperative and M and M Conference. Residents must participate in 75 percent of all required conferences.

To Apply

Penn State College of Medicine is a participant of ERAS and the NRMP Match. All application material must be submitted through ERAS.

Applicants with suitable qualifications will be invited to interview and visit with the department.

Interview Process

The typical interview season is held in November and December with three interview dates. The interview process is designed to put the applicant at ease and provide detailed information about the program.

There is a single-day interview process (with dinner the evening prior with a small group of residents and the program coordinator).

Although the program cannot reimburse interviewees for travel costs incurred to interview at Hershey, there is a discounted rate at a local hotel for your convenience. The hotel also provides breakfast and shuttle service to and from the airport, dinner and transportation to the hospital the day of the interview.

Evening Prior to Interview

The interview process would not be complete without the chance to meet current residents and have a candid discussion and question-and-answer session with them.

For that purpose, interviewees will have dinner the evening prior to the interview with several residents and the program coordinator in a relaxed, stress-free environment. The dinner is not required but can provide candidates with insight to the program.

Interview Day

The day begins with a welcome, program and Hershey-area overview and Q-and-A with the program director/chief and senior faculty.

The more formal part of the interview process will then follow, consisting of individual interviews with the program director, associate program director, program faculty and senior residents.

During this time, if a candidate is not interviewing, they have time to meet and socialize with residents, APCs and office staff.

Following interviews, a luncheon is provided. The day ends with a tour of Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center and Penn State College of Medicine.

Application FAQs

Do you participate in ERAS?

Yes. All applications must be received through ERAS.

How many positions will you have open this year?

The program recruits one PGY-1 (categorical) position each year through the NRMP Match process. Please refer to the program information listed in FREIDA for further information.

How many individuals do you interview each year?
The program typically interviews 30 to 35 individuals each year.

What is your application deadline?

Application deadline is Dec. 30. Applicants are invited to check the status of applications by email through MyERAS. All email correspondence regarding applications should be conducted through MyERAS to avoid any delays.

What are the minimum requirements?

Applications will be reviewed in their entirety. Remember that:

  • U.S. clinical experience is not required; however, vascular surgery electives and/or vascular surgery experience is preferred.
  • USMLE Step 1/COMLEX 1 is required to be selected for an interview. Step 2 is not absolutely essential to be selected for an interview, but is required to be ranked by our program. USMLE scores should be no less than 190 (and COMLEX of 500 or higher for osteopathic graduates). Osteopathic graduates are encouraged to take USMLE Step 1. PGY-1 must take the USMLE Step 3 before completing intern year.
  • Three letters of recommendation are required, with one from a vascular surgeon; a dean’s letter, medical school transcripts, curriculum vitae and personal statement are also required.
  • ECFMG certification must be supplied before beginning as a resident.

Is there a limit to the number of times an applicant can attempt Step 1 or Step 2?

There is no official limit for attempting Step 1 or Step 2; however, the number of times the applicant has taken the exam may impact the application. An invitation to interview will be based on the entire application and not simply exam scores.

If I have taken COMLEX, is the USMLE required?

The USMLE is not required for applicants who have taken COMLEX. The application will be reviewed in its entirety. USMLE Step 1 is encouraged as it will add to the applicant’s qualifications.

What visas do you sponsor?
The institution currently accepts residents on J-1 visas only; however, the application process and applicable fees are the responsibility of the applicant.

Is there a cut-off date of medical school graduation?

The Residency Recruitment Team prefers to see graduation from medical school within five years of submitting the ERAS application. However, this is dependent upon what clinical/research experience applicants have had since graduating from medical school.

How many residents are in your program?
This is a five-year integrated program accepting one resident per year. The program is a diversified program consisting of highly qualified American and international graduates.

What fellowships do you offer?
Penn State College of Medicine/Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center does not currently offer a Vascular Surgery Fellowship.

Do you offer couples matches?
If you have been invited to interview and are couples matching with an applicant interviewing with another department at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, the program will be happy to help coordinate with the other department as much as possible. Please contact the office about your partner’s interview, as the program may not have the information.

Faculty

Current Residents

Past Residents

Contact Us

Mailing Address

Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center
Division of Vascular Surgery
P.O. Box 850, MC H053
Hershey, PA 17033-0850

General Contact Information

Phone: 717-531-8898

Fax: 717-531-4151

Penn State College of Medicine is an equal-opportunity employer and accepts all qualified applications regardless of their gender, ethnic origin or religious background.