Faculty Survey Results

  • Survey Respondent: Jay D. Raman, M.D. Division Chair; Suzanne B. Merrill, M.D. Associate Residency Program Director
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?
    • High volume operative experience incorporating open, laparoscopic and robotic approaches in pediatric and adult urology.
    • Preceptorship style of residency training
    • Young, energetic and collegial faculty who provide a supportive environment for learning and research
    • Tight knit resident team who provide a family-like community
    • Hershey is the sweetest place on earth! Easy living, great outdoor activities and close to many metropolitan cities.
    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?

    We are looking for students who are motivated to learn, dedicated to patient care and who are enthusiastic team players.

    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?

    After considering USMLE scores, letters of recommendation, grades, research and extracurricular activities, we focus on finding applicants who will be a good “fit” for our program and current residents.

    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?

    Engage in sub-internships/away rotations at programs you are interested in attending.  Strive for success on the USMLE.  Understand what program characteristics are attractive to you when interviewing and if you can picture yourself being there. Show initiative, energy and passion for the field.  Best of luck!

  • Survey Respondent: Jay Simhan, MD
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?

    The Einstein Urology Residency is a diverse training program with multiple wide-ranging experiences offered through several campuses. Through these additive experiences, our residents graduate with a comprehensive understanding of urology and are further armed with tools from each urologic sub-specialty that can in return provide each graduate with long-term success. Fellowship-trained faculty include: urologic oncology, reconstruction, prosthetics, endourology, voiding dysfunction, and pediatric urology. A brief description of our main rotation sites:

    • Einstein Medical Center Philadelphia and Elkins Park – This is the principal site of the residency. Residents here are exposed to advanced oncologic cases, robotic urology, as well as a generous exposure to endourology with the highest volume of PCNL performed in the region.
    • Einstein Medical Center Montgomery – This is a community-based hospital located in the suburbs of Philadelphia. With this experience, residents gain valuable training in urologic reconstruction and prosthetics. An immersive robotics program at this hospital further augments training in complex urologic reconstruction and oncology.
    • Fox Chase Cancer Center – A total of 6 urologic oncologists provide residents with a diverse learning environment at the only NCI-designated cancer center in the metropolitan region. Residents obtain comprehensive training in open, robotic, and laparoscopic oncology as well as participate in numerous multidisciplinary programs with the center’s medical oncology and radiation oncology programs.
    • Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia – Eight pediatric urologists serve as mentors to the residents on this rotation. With such a diverse learning experience, residents are provided with an immersive experience consisting of didactics, case exposure, and collaboration with pediatric urology fellows.
    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?

    We are looking for self-starting, motivated residency candidates that are eager to work hard and are ready to make the transition to residency. Additionally, we are most interested in medical students that provide a good “fit” and work well in team environments, interact well with residents and faculty alike, and take pride in their care of the patients.

    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?

    No one part of the application is more important than other parts. We are looking for a well-rounded candidate that has performed well in medical school classes and clerkships but also on their urology specific rotations.

    Once candidates arrive at the interview stage, all candidates are generally considered “equal.” The interview process allows us to determine whether the candidate is a good “fit” for the program. Letters of recommendation from urologists help us in determining “fit” into our specialty.

    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?

     

    There are so many programs that offer comprehensive urologic training – and few programs that have glaring “weaknesses.” Try to embrace the process of looking for a program, and heed the advice of many of the urologic leaders on this forum! Urology is a great field with enormous breadth and scope – and we look forward to meeting you on the interview trail. Seek the advice of urology mentors and residents during your urology rotations. Try to demonstrate your interest in the field during your sub-internship months and attempt to involve yourself in urologic research, if possible.

     

     

    We very much thank you for your interest in our program. Please visit our program website at https://www.einstein.edu/education/residency/urology to learn further regarding the experience for our residents.

     

  • Survey Respondent: Steven Riggs, MD
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?

    Opportunity to work in a very well organized, large and integrated hospital system that is one of the largest independent academic centers in the country. Additionally, we have a novel and evolving paradigm that utilizes advanced care providers to enhance and focus the residents training and experience.

    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?

    Engaging, eager to learn and those individuals who are vested to not only be the best they can be but to strive to leave our program in a better place than when they found it.

    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?

    Letter of recommendation, GPA/class rank

    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?

    Consider rotating as medical student with your program of interest. Most importantly, be yourself! Every program wants smart residents but as important we want genuine people who are fun to be around.

  • Survey Respondent: Aria F. Olumi, M.D. Residency Program Director
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?
    • Balance of operative experience – open surgery, pure laparoscopic surgery and robotic surgery. For example, at our institution radical prostatectomies for management of prostate cancer are done by 1/3 open, 1/3 pure laparoscopic and 1/3 robotic techniques. Therefore, our residents are trained in all technical aspects of urologic care.
    • Outstanding care that is provided to our patients
    • Thought leaders at MGH and Harvard Community
    • Close knit collaboration and excellent working environment between the residents and faculty
    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?

    Passion to learn and improve the care of urologic patients through outstanding clinical/surgical expertise, education and research.

    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?

     We evaluate the application as a whole, and do not necessarily give additional weight to one aspect of application over another.

    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?

    Be passionate and remain committed to improving the care and reducing the disease burden for the urology patients. 

  • Survey Respondent: Murali K. Ankem, MD Department Chair
    Residency Program: University of Louisville
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?
    Program offers a balanced well rounded experience. Our aim is to train residents who will be ready to take challenges of both academic and private practice. Residents are happy and get along with each other and the faculty as well. Louisville is a nice place to live!
    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?
    We are looking for well rounded, down to earth, hard working and personable medical students who are reasonably smart!
    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?
    Personal statement, recommendations and scholarly activity and commitment to urology
    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?
    Score high in USMLE, scholarly activity particularly in urology, sub internship / away rotations, write a nice personal statement, do good case presentation at the end of your urology rotations (nice, short, well researched)
  • Survey Respondent: Robert Oates, MD, Residency Program Director
    Residency Program: Boston University Program
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?
    The breath, scope and volume of surgical cases along with a collegial and supportive environment.
    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?
    Evidence of scholarship, a team player, and compassion.
    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?
    The entire application of each applicant is reviewed, no one part is more important than another.
    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?
    Be yourself on the interviews.
  • Survey Respondent: Gary Chien, M.D., Program Director
    Residency Program: Kaiser Permanente - Los Angeles
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?
    Relatively relaxed environment with a wide breath of clinical material and research opportunities and bright approachable attendings.
    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?
    Enthusiastic, motivated, smart, and hard-working individuals.
    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?
    Great letters of recommendation and USMLE scores. Research and extracurricular activities also help with the application.
    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?
    Work hard on your "audition" elective rotation(s), do well on the boards. Show interest in research.
  • Survey Respondent: Adam P. Klausner, M.D. - Program Director
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?
    Environment: The environment for training is exceptional at VCU and in the Richmond community in general. The training includes rotations at our main university hospital, our Veterans Affairs Hospital, and a private practice rotation with a large urology group in town. Through these diverse experiences, the residents really get a comprehensive exposure to all levels of urology and see a wide range of clinical and operative cases. We have also made the surgical internship a much more worthwhile and rewarding experience in that pre-urology residents are given a dedicated month in radiology and pathology as well as six months of dedicated urology training. In the VCU program, we realize that there is far more benefit to rotating in these areas then doing long hours of non-operative floor work for other surgical services. Finally, the program offers a dedicated 6-month research rotation. This allows residents to gain exposure to basic science work and the majority have commented that the experience has been highly rewarding. It also allows residents to “change gears” and focus on their long-term career and family plans. Finally, the Richmond lifestyle is ideal for residents. I trained in New York City where I lived in a tiny one bedroom apartment and accumulated a significant amount of credit card debt. In Richmond, residents can choose to own a home in the nearby suburbs or rent an apartment in the busy downtown district which offers a thriving social scene. The location is great in that I’m a 45 minute flight back to New York or an hour and 45 min drive to D.C. In summary, Richmond is ideally located and convenient for people from both the North and the South. Collegial Atmosphere: Here at VCU, we are dedicated to resident training and have a residents-first attitude. In the OR, residents are expected to perform the majority of ALL cases. Our six full-time faculty are all 50 years old or younger and understand the importance of this type of training. The faculty are approachable and really take extra time to individualize training for each resident’s particular needs. We like to consider the residents and faculty as part of one cohesive family unit. We all get along easily and generally, although training may at times be long and difficult, most of the residents really enjoy their work and their training.
    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?
    Here at VCU, we are generally looking for “team players” who are motivated, energetic and are looking forward to growth and positive change. We are a young faculty and are constantly striving toward continued improvement. We want our residents to be part of this growth and change and encourage their participation. We want them to be efficient enough to enjoy their outside lives as much as their work. We want them to be bright enough to be competitive with residents in any training program in the country.
    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?
    All of our applicants are expected to meet certain minimum criteria in terms of grades, class rank, and board scores. However, once applicants make it to an interview, we generally feel that they should all get an equal shot. Higher ranks are given to those individuals who demonstrate the qualities that we consider most important: being a team player, being motivated, and being happy and well-adjusted in the Richmond community
    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?
    Good Luck! You’ve chosen a fantastic field, and if you make it, you are going to have an enjoyable and rewarding career. Keep in touch with people you meet on the interview “trail” as they can provide valuable information about other programs and places. Keep your file active by sending in updates as they come in (abstract acceptances, new board scores, nomination/acceptance into AOA, etc). Make sure that you’ve read up about the program and show your interest. If we think you not interested in us, we are probably not going to be very interested in you. RELAX and enjoy the chance to see a lot of new and interesting places.
  • Survey Respondent: William Hulbert, M.D. - Program Director
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?
    Intense surgical training. High volume of adult and pediatric urology cases, diverse pathology from urban setting with large rural referral base, and wide exposure to endoscopic, minimally invasive, and open surgical techniques. Outstanding robotic training – with 5 robots spread over 3 hospitals, tremendous opportunity to learn and excel at robotic urologic surgery. Graduating residents are well-prepared for entry either into further academic training or immediate professional practice. Resident autonomy and camaraderie. The resident team has strong faculty support but tremendous independence when it comes to call schedules, conferences, educational calendars, etc. There is a strong sense of team mentality and accountability. This leads to a fair amount of flexibility when managing resident issues like attending national conferences, job/fellowship interviews, family and/or health emergencies. By the time a resident has reached chief year, she or he will have mastered the strong leadership skills necessary to succeed in most health care and hospital settings.
    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?
    Energy and motivation. Initiative and enthusiasm. Professionalism and intelligence. Strong communication and organizational skills.
    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?
    Academic excellence, letters of recommendation, and prior experience in some sort of research.
    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?
    Because the urology match is both a competitive match and an early match, it does require significant energy and commitment on the part of the candidate. Make sure to seek out urology residents at your own medical school for advice on a career in urology and do a couple of electives (at your home program as well as one outside institution). It goes without saying that your USMLE scores and your academic record will be under intense scrutiny. Seek out letters of recommendation from faculty who have worked with you and can write honestly and positively about that experience. Research is a big plus—even if it’s just an abstract that you submitted to a national conference. Not only does it show initiative and energy, but during the interview, it is often an opportunity to show your passion for our specialty.
  • Survey Respondent: Anthony Y. Smith, MD, Depratment Chair and Satyan Shah, MD, Residency Program Director
    Residency Program: University of New Mexico
    If you were an applicant, why would you choose to train in your residency program?
    Our program offers well balanced training in both open and minimally invasive surgery. We have subspecialists in oncology, robotic/lap, neurourology, pediatrics, infertility, and renal transplant. UNM has recently opened up a brand-new freestanding hospital on the west side of Albuquerque and installed a new daVinci Si there. We actually have 4 robots in our training program, at all the different hospitals our residents rotate at. Our renal transplant experience is a unique feature of our program - we believe it gives our residents comfort with major open surgery that translates into improved open surgical and oncology skill. We have recently hired an additional renal transplant surgeon, an endourologist, and a general urologist and are continuing to expand. As the only university hospital and tertiary care center in the state, we draw from a wide region and therefore, have an impressive clinical experience for the residents. New Mexico is indeed a beautiful location to do training, with ample outdoor activities including skiing, hiking, and cultural activities afforded by our proximity to Santa Fe, one of the premier tourist destinations in the US. Please see a video tour of our program at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uJJDguHQTP8
    What is your program looking for in a graduating medical student?
    We are of course, looking for evidence of a strong work ethic and excellence in medical school. We are also looking for someone who will be a good "fit"
    What part of an application do you consider most important in ranking applicants?
    We believe the interview, board scores, and achievement in medical school to be most important.
    What advice do you have for medical students hoping to match in Urology?
    Do some rotations in urology and start early. Urologists tend to be a well rounded bunch and we are looking for well rounded people so keep that in mind. What it ususally means if you want to do urology is that you have a surgeon's mindset. Urology is extremely competive these days. Go after it but if you don't make it for one reason or another, remember that you will be happy doing surgery of some sort so head that direction.