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Class of 2025

Arhant Rao

“I chose UNC for the depth and breadth of pulmonary pathology (easily comparable to–if not greater than–any big-city hospital), the critical care exposure with graded autonomy, the “choose-your-own-adventure” approach to fellowship, and the wonderful faculty and co-fellows!”

Emily Gosche

“UNC is the perfect combination of everything I was looking for in a fellowship program. Even though interviews were online, I was absolutely blown away by my interview experience. During the day, it was clear that everyone in the program prioritized supporting each other, creating a sense of community, teaching, and providing stellar care to patients. I am not clearly differentiated in my career path and UNC has faculty and research opportunities in every area so I will be able to explore topics of interest throughout fellowship. North Carolina and the Chapel Hill area are also a great place for dogs, outdoor adventures and meeting new people.”

Kristian Figueras

“I chose to stay at UNC after residency for fellowship due to the culture. There is no sense of hierarchy.  I felt empowered as a resident and now as a fellow to provide feedback and impact change on the program and on my own path as a physician and person. I want to be a Latino physician caring for Latino patients.   Being a safety net hospital for the state, UNC allows me to care for a diverse population with both common and rare disorders. Overall, UNC is a great choice for those looking to be a balanced clinician and academician who want to care for a diverse patient population.”

Maura Thornton

“I chose to stay at UNC for the faculty mentorship! The faculty here are warm, engaging, and excited to share what they love about PCCM. I felt that I would be encouraged & supported in my endeavors in whichever niche of pulmonary medicine was ultimately right for me. Within the fellowship, there’s a balance between rigor and casual camaraderie here – a work hard, play hard vibe that I really enjoy.”

Josh Clark

“UNC is the rare academic center where you’re surrounded by incredibly intelligent colleagues but also some of the most humble, down to earth people I know. As a state institution, we take care of anyone and everyone from around North Carolina. This presents plentiful opportunities for learning and growth. Not to mention that the triangle is a rapidly growing area with an abundance of activities (both outdoors and in) to do. 

Class of 2024

Ryan Threadgill

“I chose UNC because of the warm and welcoming environment on interview day. Even through a virtual interview I felt like I belonged. Clinically I have an interest in bronchiectasis and NTM which UNC excels at. The Triangle is also a favorable job market for my spouse and a market where we could afford to buy a house!”

Padraig Hawkins

“I have an interest in basic science research and I was attracted by the diverse pulmonary research community at UNC. I was excited by the possibility of getting involved in impactful projects with exceptional faculty. I also value that the clinical training allows for exposure to a wide breadth of subspecialties and a diverse population of patients. The Triangle seemed like a perfect fit for my family.”

Aaron Lerner

“I considered UNC for residency because my family had moved nearby, but I only pulled the trigger on moving from CA to NC because of how friendly and collegial the program is, and I stayed for fellowship for the same reason. I truly feel like part of a close-knit community in the PCCM Department. Of course it also helps that there are so many great outdoor activities in the area”

Danielle Witt

“I chose to attend UNC for PCCM fellowship largely based on the faculty I met during interviews. I knew the hospital and training program had a strong reputation and I felt like the faculty were interested in getting to know me as an individual rather than “another applicant”. I also appreciated the strong presence of women in leadership positions.”

Divyesh Mehta

“I chose to train at UNC due to my immediate attraction to the kindness, humility, and patience of the pulmonary and critical care faculty. From my interview day on, I felt supported in both my clinical and educational missions at this program. As a result of this environment, I find it easy and fulfilling to be a learner, clinical educator, and researcher in my fellowship.”

Mary Wang

“As a fellow at UNC, you get to experience every pulmonary subspecialty (transplant, ILD, IP etc). Pulmonary hypertension management is also primarily managed by pulmonary and not cardiology. UNC keeps the door open to any career path you eventually choose to take.”

Class of 2023

Alex Despotes

“For me, the people are the greatest asset of the UNC Pulmonary and Critical Care program - From being a medical student and then a resident at UNC, I knew the people in the Pulmonary and Critical Care division were excellent teachers and clinicians, and I was fortunate to have great mentorship from them as I decided to pursue combined pediatric pulmonary and pulmonary/critical care fellowship. I knew I was interested in caring for patients with CF of all ages, and there is an incredibly strong tradition of CF research and care at UNC. The pediatric and adult pulmonary programs have had other fellows do successful combined fellowship at UNC, and both were enthusiastic and supportive of this as a valid training trajectory. I’ve come to appreciate the scholarship throughout the division in so many different areas within pulmonary and critical care, and I think I will be well-equipped to succeed as an independently funded investigator. UNC pulm truly is a close-knit group of physicians, APPs, nursing staff, clinic staff, and researchers that work together, which fosters a great training environment. Last but not least, I’ve found lifelong friends in my co-fellows.”

Max Diddams

“I came to UNC for fellowship because after 3 years as an internal medicine resident at UNC because I loved the people. I love the Triangle, and I wanted to serve the people of North Carolina. My experience before and during fellowship is that people really do better on our service in the Medical ICU, and that I will graduate an excellent intensivist.”

Scott Vasher

“I chose UNC for so many reasons: the faculty, the fellows, the practice environment, proximity to family, and several others.  It was important to me that the UNC has a record of producing a range of pulmonary and critical care experts, having academic rigor paired with clinical excellence.  This program really can help you become whatever you want: an 80/20 researcher, academic clinician educator, QI expert, or private practitioner.”

Ben DeMarco

“I knew I wanted a fellowship program that offered wide breadth and depth of clinical training, diversity of pulmonary pathology, and the infrastructure and mentorship to support successful research projects. It was also important to me to train at a place that was a hospital for the people and cared for patients regardless of their ability to pay. UNC checked all of those boxes for me and has a proven track record of graduating fellows across a diversity of career paths (clinician educator, clinician researcher and clinician expert). Despite starting fellowship amidst an historic global pandemic, I felt welcomed and supported by my cofellows and faculty and that collegial environment has continued since.”