General Surgery Residency
The general surgery residency program at the University of North Carolina is a broad-based curriculum that seeks to train outstanding clinical surgeons and allow individuals to tailor their education to achieve their career goals. Clinical training encompasses five years of residency across the breadth of general surgery and surgical specialties. This includes trauma/critical care, minimally invasive/upper GI surgery, colorectal surgery, surgical oncology, pediatric surgery, vascular surgery, transplantation, thoracic surgery and burn surgery. The majority of the training is here at UNC Hospitals with additional training in educational partnership with WakeMed hospital in Raleigh, where residents gain extensive experience with trauma and acute care surgery.
The focus of the training program is to create surgeons competent to care for the breadth of general surgery. We have a core belief that progressive independence, both in and out of the operating room, is critical to effectively train surgeons who are ready to practice the day they leave our training program. We work hard to assure that resident have a depth and breadth of clinical experience that allows them to be truly independent as chief residents. This includes the opportunity to act as the chief resident as early as the PGY 3 year. We also work hard to allow earned independence in the operating room and that, along with complexity of patient care and ability to act as the teacher for junior residents, is one of the core requirements for our chief resident rotations. Finally, we have been judicious as a department in expansion of our GME programs, both with regard to number of general surgery residents and in limiting fellowship programs. This has all been done with an eye toward the best possible clinical training we can offer.
While we encourage residents to pursue dedicated research time in addition to the five years of clinical training to further their career goals and gain experience that will be the foundation for academic careers, this is not a requirement and residents may complete five years of clinical training without spending additional time. We are very proud that some our trainees still finish our program and are comfortable pursuing careers as general surgeons. We believe this means we truly are giving them the depth of training necessary to be independent practitioners once they finish our program. For those who do choose to pursue research opportunities, we have robust options that include basic/translational research, health services research (including the pursuit of Master’s of public health degrees) and international research opportunities. The latter effort is in partnership with Kamuzu Central Hospital in Malawi.
The location of our training program on the campus of the University of North Carolina makes for a dynamic training environment. UNC is home to a number of highly recognized professional schools, many of which our residents take advantage of during their dedicated research years. Across the medical center, nearly 800 graduate medical physicians from across the country train in nearly 80 accredited programs. This robust environment leads to a number of leadership opportunities for our trainees amongst their peers. Within the program, we pride ourselves on the relationship between residents who truly get to know each other well with the majority of time spent at one institution. The resident-faculty relationship is also one that is very collegial and creates a friendly and dynamic work environment.
We invite you to explore this web site and get to know our program further. Please contact us if we can answer any questions.
(Program contact information can be found here)