Apr 22, 2010
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I have wanted to become a surgeon since before med school and since then, every course and every clerkship that I did confirmed this aspiration. Now, that I am on surgery, I like it even more. I love the OR, the procedures, the pathology and the patients. I just cannot stand ....most of the surgeons and residents!!!
I wouldn't want any of them to be neither my surgeon nor my friend. They are bitter, disrespectful, making fun of sedated patients on the OR table, backstabbing each other and taking all their frustrations on nurses and medical students.
Where are all the nice people? Are there any programs who have the reputation of attracting caring people?
 
Jul 24, 2009
63
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Resident [Any Field]
in short, obviously not at your program.

find a program that focuses on resident education as they are more likely to be within hours and at least pretend to care about our well beings.

there's prob a reason why your dept seems unhappy - are there financial woes? are the patients really difficult? is there a good range of elective vs. trauma/emergency cases? do the attendings work their tails off? is the chair an approachable guy? I'm going to guess not.

The typical SDN disclaimer: this is totally biased and my own opinion/experience, but, in general, the more trauma % of cases, the less happy the residents; the East Coast (esp Boston/ NYC programs) have a reputation for being more malignant, many heavy research programs do as well. A few "nicer" programs (I'm sure someone will throw a hissy so bring it on) in my distant memory are:

Stanford
UNC
Madison
Northwestern
IU
UVM
U Iowa
Lahey
Swedish Covenant
OHSU
Ohio State

I won't dare name "mean" programs on here but if you have specific program questions feel free to PM me.
 
Oct 27, 2010
21
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Status
Medical Student
I think this thread is really helpful for future and current applicants and really appreciate treehorsio's reply. I hope that other people feel comfortable giving their input as well. I find it unfortunate that treehoriso thinks other people will throw a "hissy" in response to his list, but completely understand since it is too often that I see people attacked for their opinions on SDN. In the end, I think everyone's opinions are helpful and I think the readers of SDN are smart enough to take all posts with a grain of salt and can form their own independent decisions. With that said, I hope others give their input as to the "nice" and even "not so nice" programs out there.

I would have to agree about UNC being a "nice" school. My understanding is that the PD and chairman have frequent meetings with the residents and actually listen to their input. As for the others schools listed, I have no knowledge with which to agree or disagree. However, I must say that I'm pleasantly surprised to see Stanford on that list. I thought they were research heavy and therefore assumed they were more on the malignant side. Now a small part of me wishes I had applied there.
 
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45408

aw buddy
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From the hearsay that I've acquired over the past few years, it seems like large academic programs are more likely to have a malignant nature. Many (most?) are not that way, but the ones that reportedly are do seem to fit that mold.

I interviewed all across the Midwest, and none of the places put out a malignant vibe, although many people across the trail said that Loyola had such a reputation. I went there, but I didn't notice anything that made it seem malignant.
 

Thanatos

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I have wanted to become a surgeon since before med school and since then, every course and every clerkship that I did confirmed this aspiration. Now, that I am on surgery, I like it even more. I love the OR, the procedures, the pathology and the patients. I just cannot stand ....most of the surgeons and residents!!!
I wouldn't want any of them to be neither my surgeon nor my friend. They are bitter, disrespectful, making fun of sedated patients on the OR table, backstabbing each other and taking all their frustrations on nurses and medical students.
Where are all the nice people? Are there any programs who have the reputation of attracting caring people?
We're not supposed to do that?
 
Sep 8, 2010
109
0
Status
Resident [Any Field]
Maybe you should consider the surgical subspecialties? I've found them to be less edge-y, if that's what you're looking for.
 
Jul 24, 2009
63
0
Status
Resident [Any Field]
ech, careful there.

#1: all sub specialties still do at least one year of gen surg
#2: at least at MY institution, the ENT guys seem to be the meanest, despite working fewer hours
#3: ortho, neuro, and plastics all work their tails off and the residents, as a whole, range from moderately approachable to frank a**holes. Which I forgive them for as it is nearly a direct reflection of their incredible work load - I've watched cool, fun-loving interns morph into firemonsters after their PGY3 in neurosurg
 

Jeff Smoker

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Aug 31, 2010
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Nice people drive the train at the petting zoo.
 

braluk

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Really varies across the country. Something I've definitely noticed though and this is no generalization by any means but programs in areas outside of major metropolitan centers tend to be populated by residents who have families, and kids. I found this more in community-academically affiliated programs that were not in some area downtown, but more like 10-15 miles out of a major city- so there tended to be a good mix of people who are family oriented folks (which tends to carry into work) and a few single people who also went into the cities but they too were fairly nice and enjoyable to be around. Major academic research centers who have fellowships in every specialty tended to make the residents bicker with each other (particularly if they are fighting over cases and lower level residents were stuck on the floors and operated less heavily). Residents that went onto super competitive specialties at prestigious locations also sometimes meant competing with your colleagues over research positions.

Programs with an unusually large number of first year positions (categorical and prelim combined)- I've always got the sense that they had some pyramidal feel to it, and hence people are less likely to go out of their way to help each other out. Small programs fared better.

Another sign is to just seeing how M&M is run- I've tended to notice that aggressive and borderline unnecessary grilling of residents by attendings without other attendings jumping in to ever defend residents also reflected programs that were likely to breed unhappy residents who didn't have much support behind them in terms of staff.

But it all depends on your definition of nice. If you're talking about flowers and candy and having people around always smiling and you are never yelled at- you won't find that in surgery. But I'm guessing that's not what you're asking in general.
 
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