Mar 29, 2010
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Tell me about the program. I already know about the area so no need to comment on location. Please, no word of mouth stuff. Current residents and attendings at Hershey Med Center I want to know what the program is like. Not much current info on SDN. Thanks!
 

lawdawg

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solid program from what I recall
 
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CrazyJake

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Residents work a lot there and when they're done they get to work some more. They did not see happy during my interview and I got that impression confirmed when several residents said 'we're not happy here' during the actual interview. Maybe others are happy???

The area...well you know about that.

CJ
 

heathermed

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Jul 29, 2009
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100% agree with the over worked thing.
I have a really good friend that is currently a 2nd year and he told me that he hardly ever sees his family. I interviewed there recently and he told me to rank it but not at the top since in his opinion, some of the other places that I have invites at are much better. He regrets ranking them so high. He said a lot of the cases they do "after hours" are not learning cases.
The city is very blah too.
I liked the people there, so that's a definite plus! I definitely wouldn't mind matching there from the short view of it that I got.
 

sunnyINphilly

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If you are interested in academics, I hear you can get associate profesorship and funding within 2-3 yeras of finishing your residency, IF you want to stay in the area.
 
Nov 17, 2010
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Tell me about the program. I already know about the area so no need to comment on location. Please, no word of mouth stuff. Current residents and attendings at Hershey Med Center I want to know what the program is like. Not much current info on SDN. Thanks!
As said above. If interested in Academics seems to have a pretty good if you wanted to stay in Hershey (of course to get people to stay there kind of have to)
 

loveumms

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I'm a current CA-3 at Penn State. I am very happy with my residency. The faculty are fantastic and I have learned a ton. I will be able to do pretty much any case that comes my way once I'm finished and in my eyes, that is what residency is about.

Yes, we work hard. Are we "over worked"? NO way. I have logged my hours almost every month since starting residency and the most I have ever worked is 70 hours while in the OR. On average I work 55-60 hours a week. Have I logged more hours when on off service rotations? Yes. We rotate through several ICUs and some surgical services. Have I ever violated my work hours? Only a few times while doing my senior ICU rotations (and I should mention this was by choice because I wanted to stay around and learn). Never have I ever violated my work hours while on an anesthesia rotation, even during my three CT months.

We don't get relieved from our duties at any certain time and we do have late nights but, personally I would be concerned if I was being relieved every day at 3pm since almost all of my learning has occured in the OR. Unfortunately, this is the expectation of some of my colleagues. If you want a residency where you work 50 hours a week or less, this is not the residency for you.

If anyone wants more information about the program, I would be more then happy to answer questions honestly.
 

loveumms

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One more thing - many people comment about living in the area. Hershey/harrisburg is certainly not a mecca of activity but, there is plenty to do and cost of living is reasonable.
 

mummer43

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Hershey/Harrisburg is a nice quiet area, but it's not comparable to a big city in any way. If you like the outdoors, then there is a lot to do within a reasonable drive, and Philly isn't that far away.

There's also an awesome Thai restaurant close by - Bangkok Wok. Best Thai food you'll find anywhere.
 

heathermed

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One more thing - many people comment about living in the area. Hershey/harrisburg is certainly not a mecca of activity but, there is plenty to do and cost of living is reasonable.
I think it takes a very "small town" type of person to be happy there.

Personally speaking, I think being there for 3 years would drive me to suicide. lol.
 

loveumms

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I think it takes a very "small town" type of person to be happy there.

Personally speaking, I think being there for 3 years would drive me to suicide. lol.
I love cities and considered myself a "city" type of girl however, I've come to really love the area. It's nice to have cities within driving distance but, also have lots of nature and space too. Not to mention, the patient population is much nicer. Not having to take care of heroin addicts who just got done with their cocaine binges makes for a much more pleasant day.
 

optimus_prime

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While it might not be a "sexy" big name program, Penn State is a rock solid place to train. You do everything except lung transplants. Volume could be better with CT, but other than that I have no complaints from my training. Very few ASA 1-2's, so you get used to dealing with sick as snot patients. And LOTS of peds (and not just on your peds rotation).

We were busy, but I definitely wouldn't consider it a malignant program. I agree with the 55-60 hour week as being average. Weekend call was probably an average of 3 weekends over every two months. Rarely slept all night on call.

Everyone in my graduating class got a job in the city they wanted or the fellowship that they wanted. I have only good things to say about the place.

I'm sure there are some residents there who are not happy. I met more than a few who along the way who yearned for the attending life while a resident. But you have to pay your dues first, and the ones who realize that earlier are the ones who tend to get more out of the experience.
Residency is what you make of it. Bust your ***** for a few years, don't stop reading, don't mentally check out when a lap chole becomes easy, do the right things - and it won't matter where you train. Same thing goes for the city you train in- you can live anywhere for a few years. Make your own good time, don't be dependant on your environment. (stepping off my soap box)
 

Winged Scapula

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As a former surgery resident there who was/still is good friends with those who trained in anesthesia there, I can echo what optimus prime and loveumms said.

It is a busy program and while in the "old days" I wouldn't have been suprised if the residents worked long hours (because the surgical program wasn't the best at limiting work hours, try as they might), I would not call it malignant in any fashion.

The residents were a friendly, down to earth great crew. Same for nearly all of the attendings. They all claimed to be happy and got a good education. I am sure there are some who are not happy; that will happen anywhere. But unless there has been a significant change or my friends aren't being honest, I suspect that you talked to some bad apples.

Good mix of cases and as noted, a lot of Peds - its the only Level 1/Children's Hospital between Philly and Pittsburgh. Pediatric Surgery had the most add on cases of any surgical specialty (lots of swallowed FB). CTS is not as heavy as it used to be, but still decent. No burns.

Hershey? I consider myself a big city lover but honestly in residency, the last thing you want is a busy long commute, expensive rent, loud neighbors, dangerous streets. There is plenty to do in the area, lots of natural beauty and Philly, DC and Baltimore are well within driving distance. I loved leaving the hospital after dark and not worrying about a) whether my car would still be in the lot and intact; and b) whether I was safe to walk to my car alone. And as optimus notes, this is a more upscale area and you aren't taking care of crack whores, prisoners (rarely) and other ingrates. The Amish population also makes for some interesting genetic surgical diseases due to the consanguineity and they are very gracious. Call me a snob but I don't think I missed out on anything (then again I am practicing in an upscale area as well).

Its not for everyone, but I always found that there are people who are unhappy regardless of where they go. I thought Hershey was a great place to do residency.