Carmen B. Meier, MD, is a gastroenterology fellow at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC). She expressed an early interest in gastroenterology and was linked to Scott Plevy, MD, a gastrointestinal (GI) diseases specialist with a particular interest in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), as her research mentor. "I just asked about the possibility of doing some hands-on basic research along with my clinical training, and I was introduced to Dr. Plevy," she says. "He had a great project going that addressed the genetics of IBD, and he welcomed me on board." Dr. Meier exchanged three electives to allow for additional research time. By the time she applied for a fellowship, she had made significant advances in her research and had strong letters of recommendation from her mentor and others in the GI division. She was accepted into multiple GI fellowship programs across the country but chose to enter the one here at UPMC after residency. Dr. Meier says she's grateful for her mentor's support. "We've talked about how it's tough to balance clinical work with research. I feel well prepared to pursue my research goals."
Carmen B. Meier, MD
Women's Health Track
In addition to clinical training, one of the objectives of our residency program at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) is to help you achieve your career goals. Residents in our program are exposed to some of the best fellowship programs in the country. Those interested in a subspecialty are paired with mentors in their particular field of interest. Many residents become involved in a research project this way, resulting in publications and attendance at national conferences. The strong internal medicine background and the association with world-class subspecialty faculty provide our residents with the ability to compete for the best fellowships in the country, including those at our institution. Some of our graduates move on to competitive fellowship programs in other locales, but many choose to stay, given the nationally recognized reputation of our institution's subspecialty divisions and their associated fellowships.
For individuals interested in a career in primary care, hospitalist medicine, or academics in general internal medicine, the Division of General Internal Medicine is one of the largest in the country and has copious funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other sources. The University of Pittsburgh Office of Academic Career Development also offers further resources for academic minded residents and fellows. Wherever your interests lie, our program can help you find your niche.
For individuals who are applying to internal medicine residencies and already have an area of interest, our program offers interview days specifically geared toward a subspecialty focus. In addition to the general medicine interview, introduction, and tour, applicants meet with subspecialty program directors and faculty during the interview day. At this time, several dates are set up for those interested in cardiology, gastroenterology, hematology/oncology, and pulmonary and critical care medicine. Please see the Applicant Corner for more details.
Hematology/oncology fellowship, University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute
BS, Boston College
MD, Georgetown University
This program has given me such broad exposure, including the opportunity to do inpatient cancer care at a phenomenal tertiary care cancer center. The clinician-researchers at the cancer center are leaders in their fields, which lends invaluable research opportunities. Also, the general medicine experience offers an excellent inpatient and outpatient balance with a faculty that is first-class. The Women's Health Track gives the program a close and smaller feel with excellent mentoring.
It's very easy to live here economically. We were able to buy a lovely home that we likely could not have afforded in another city.
Hematology/oncology fellowship, Duke University Medical Center
Flushing, New York
BA, Johns Hopkins University
MD, Mount Sinai School of Medicine
The opportunity to do research with world-renowned investigators at the University of Pittsburgh during residency enabled me to be a competitive candidate during the fellowship application process. It was also excellent preparation for a career in academic medicine. On the wards, I was exposed to patients with interesting pathologies. The attendings trusted me to take on a lot of responsibility while giving the supervision that was needed, enabling me to become a very strong clinician.
I enjoy the people here. Pittsburghers have great city pride, especially during the NFL playoffs!
Pulmonary and critical care fellowship, Harvard University at Massachu-setts General Hospital
New Orleans, Louisiana
BS, Tulane University
MD, Louisiana State University
Two things stand out here. First, the pulmonary/critical care faculty members are exceptional clinicians and educators, very supportive of housestaff efforts to become involved in research, and excellent mentors. Second, UPMC's wide referral base allows us to see a lot of interesting cases, typical ICU admissions as well as more unusual situations, which by the end of our training give us the confidence to manage a broad range of medical conditions.
Pittsburgh is a mid-sized city that has a lot of interesting things to offer without the hassles of a big city. There are three major sports teams here. It's culturally rich in terms of performing arts and theater, and there are many outdoor things to do. Anybody can find a niche here.
National Institutes of Health
BS, University of Pennsylvania
MS, University of Pennsylvania
MD, Thomas Jefferson University
The excellence of the attendings in this residency program and the mentoring, which is incredibly strong, help you develop clinical skills, professionalism, and a high acuity of patient care. Also, the excellence of UPMC as a health care institution cannot be overlooked.
I like the people in Pittsburgh. In general, I've found them to be down-to-earth, kind, and hardworking. It's hard for me because I'm from Philadelphia!
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin
BS, University of Wisconsin–Madison
PhD, University of Utah
MD, University of Michigan
The breadth of patient disorders we are exposed to provides comfort in many clinical situations. The variety of socioeconomic statuses and ages allows further familiarity with and sensitivity to unique issues. Having the residency program in a large academic setting provides exposure to acute illnesses and complex disease situations.
Pittsburgh is a multicultural city with a variety of indoor and outdoor activities—the Steelers, Pirates, Penguins, many bike paths, and innumerable parks. Also, my favorite hobby is eating out, and there are quite a number of ethnic restaurants here.
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
BA, La Roche College
BS, University of Pittsburgh
MD, University of Pittsburgh
This program offers excellent mentoring. The faculty are always available, and there are ample research opportunities. I've gotten to know the GI faculty, and they know me. These relationships helped me attain the very competitive fellowship that I have now. Also, I've been able to develop really strong friendships, and I like the program for that.
My friends and family are here, so, of course, I like it in Pittsburgh. There's a lot to offer if you go looking for it.