Fourth year osteopathic medicine students rejoiced with friends and family as they learned their residency program matches.
It was a reunion of sorts as about 80 fourth year PCOM Georgia osteopathic medicine students, some with significant others, gathered at the SweetWater Brewing Company in Atlanta on Saturday, March 16, 2019. They took a moment to celebrate and share their news with each other after finding out where they will spend their next three to five years completing residency programs in their selected specialties.
Friday was the National Resident Matching Program’s Match Day, although some students had participated in earlier programs such as the Military Match and the American Osteopathic Association Intern/Resident Registration Program. Pharmacy students at PCOM Georgia who desire to complete a residency will participate in the ASHP Resident Matching Program and will receive their results on April 10.
Jordan Moss (DO ’19) who matched at Floyd Medical Center in Rome, Georgia, was ecstatic. “I’m very excited. I’ve been there the last couple of years for my rotations. I already feel like part of the family and I’m excited to stay!” she said.
Shannon Philipps (DO ’19), who will move on to a neurology residency at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University after graduating in May described the sensation. “I feel like the weight that has been sitting on my chest for four years is gone. It’s an indescribable feeling.”
Kaitlyn Banning (DO ’19) agreed. “It’s like a massive ton of bricks has just been lifted off your back.” She is looking forward to completing an OB/GYN residency at Detroit Medical Center in Michigan. “I’m super thrilled. It was a really good option for me.”
She explained that she participated in a couples match with Jeffrey Aguiar (DO ’19), her significant other, who matched to a general surgery residency at Henry Ford Macomb Hospital near Detroit. “I found love and a medical career at PCOM Georgia,” she said smiling, noting that her parents moved to Cincinnati, Ohio, from Georgia and she’ll be within a four hour drive of them.
Banning shared her thoughts on the last four years. She explained, “You apply to medical school thinking that the MCAT is the hardest test you’ll ever take and you’re like, shoot yeah, I’m over that hump. I’m good to go. And then you get into medical school and you see Step 1 looming in the future and you’re like the MCAT has nothing on this exam. And then you take Step 1 and well, there’s Step 2, and then you take Step 2 and you’re like, I have to get into a residency and do all these interviews. I think that’s kind of a nice analogy for life. There’s always a harder next step. It really never ends, but we chose this and it’s a lifelong educational path.”
She added, “Our time at PCOM Georgia has gone by so fast in a broad, look-back-at-the-whole-experience kind of way. But each year was really challenging and hard in its own way. You’re so busy, you’re not even thinking about time. You’re just thinking day to day. You’re so entrenched in it that, looking back, it did fly by.”
Although some students will be traveling many miles to reach their residency sites, Georgia Tech graduate Nida Jiwani is staying close to home. She matched in family medicine at Gwinnett Medical Center in Lawrenceville, Georgia. “I’m super excited to start there,” she said. I’ve grown up in Gwinnett County so it will be nice to serve my community once again.”
Besides congratulatory hugs and high fives, the celebration, hosted by Institutional Advancement, also featured “I Matched” t-shirts, a photo booth and Fox Bros Bar-B-Q.
Established in 2005, PCOM Georgia is a private, not-for-profit, accredited institute of higher education dedicated to the healthcare professions. The Suwanee, Georgia, campus is affiliated with Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine which has a storied history as a premier osteopathic medical school. PCOM Georgia offers the doctor of osteopathic medicine degree, the doctor of pharmacy degree, the doctor of physical therapy degree, as well as graduate degrees in biomedical sciences and physician assistant studies. Emphasizing "a whole person approach to care," PCOM Georgia focuses on educational excellence, interprofessional education and service to the wider community. The campus is also home to the Georgia Osteopathic Care Center, an osteopathic manipulative medicine clinic, which is open to the public by appointment. For more information, visit pcom.edu or call 678-225-7500.
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