It’s been a long journey for Rush Medical College’s fourth-year students. They spent more than half of their medical training in a global pandemic that shut down most of the country, but have nonetheless made it to one of the most significant days in their medical education: Match Day.
While graduation is still several weeks away, Match Day, when medical students across the United States simultaneously receive information about their future in medicine, comes first.
“It’s exciting to find out what our life is going to look like for the next several years,” says fourth-year Rush medical student Johnny Alvarez de la Cruz who will pursue a career in primary care through an internal medicine residency at University of California, Davis. “The privilege that the Rush name carries goes a long way to help us get good interviews and a really good outlook for Match Day.”
At 11 a.m. on March 18, 2022, Rush's graduating medical students received results from the National Residency Matching Program informing them what residency program they would move on to after graduation. Celebrating in person for the first time since 2019, reactions erupted throughout the room when the students opened their match results together.
A unique education
Despite the challenges of training during a global pandemic, some students were able to find a silver lining. For example, because many patients delayed care while COVID-19 cases were spiking, by the time they came in for treatment their cases were often more advanced, providing unique learning opportunities.
“In hindsight, it made our education even better,” says fourth-year medical student Daniel Boctor, who will complete an internal medicine residency at University of California, San Francisco. “People were burnt out, but we all felt like we were fighting the same fight together. It created a strong sense of unity.”
For many, watching the scientists join together to fight COVID-19 was a reminder of why they wanted to get into medicine in the first place.
“Many of us were drawn to medicine because we believed in the power of science to help patients everywhere,” says Alice Burgess, a fourth-year medical student who will complete her pediatrics residency at University of Colorado School of Medicine. “Watching the scientific community unite in 2020 to create powerful vaccines, to study the coronavirus and to apply newfound knowledge to stop the spread was not only empowering, but inspiring.”
2022 Match results
Rush Medical College is pleased to announce that 100% of the Class of 2022 earned residency placement this year. The 145 students matched with residency programs in 21 specialties and combined programs at 88 institutions across the country. This year’s top five specialties were internal medicine (23), emergency medicine (18), psychiatry (15), anesthesiology (14) and family medicine (14).
Twenty-one students will continue their training at Rush-affiliated residency programs and three students will train at John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital of Cook County. Other graduating students will train at prestigious institutions such as Mayo Clinic, Johns Hopkins and Yale.
“We had a phenomenal match this year with many of our students matching at top-rated programs across the country,” said Elizabeth Baker, MD, senior associate dean of undergraduate medical education. “The students have persevered through the challenge of completing their all of their clinical training during a pandemic. I am very proud of this graduating class and look forward to watching them grow in to talented physicians. ”
About Match Day
Match Day is the culmination of the process of applying and interviewing for residency programs at health care institutions across the country. Once students complete their residency interviews in January, they rank their choices in the National Residency Matching Program (NRMP) system, and the residency programs in turn rank their top student picks. The NRMP system then matches students with the residency programs.
Depending on a student’s chosen specialty, a residency will last from three to six years and leads to eligibility for board certification in a medical or surgical specialty. The residency is composed almost entirely of the care of hospitalized or clinic patients with supervision by senior physicians.
See more of the 2022 Match Day excitement on Rush Medical College’s Instagram.