The University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson Class of 2022 learned where they would spend the next three to seven years of their careers as physicians in specialized residency training programs at the recent Match Day ceremony on March 18.
Cheers erupted as the 114 students tore open envelopes and embraced each other and their loved ones in celebration.
On Friday, 42,000 soon-to-be medical school graduates from around the country simultaneously learned where the National Residency Matching Program placed them. This year’s event was the first in-person Match Day ceremony held by the College of Medicine – Tucson since 2019. The pandemic forced the 2020 and 2021 celebrations to be held virtually.
“On this day two years ago, we faced uncertainty and concern about an evolving pandemic we knew absolutely nothing about,” said Michael Abecassis, MD, MBA, dean of the UArizona College of Medicine – Tucson. “Today, we face optimism fueled by dropping rates of infection and rising rates of immunity. Let us celebrate your resilience through this past year, which makes today even more special, and wish you success on the road ahead.”
“This is an emotional event where you get to know where you’re going to spend the next many years of your life and fulfill your dreams of being a physician,” said Kevin Moynahan, MD, UArizona College of Medicine – Tucson vice dean for education.
Tucson Match Results
Class of 2022 students matched at 63 hospitals across 28 states, including at institutions such as Stanford University, Yale University, the Mayo Clinic, UCLA, Memorial Sloan-Kettering, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. The graduates will pursue specialties in areas such as anesthesiology, dermatology, neurology, orthopedic surgery, radiology and urology.
More than a third of graduates will remain in Arizona and more than half of the class will go into primary care, helping address the primary shortage across the state and nation. Residencies generally start in July, and residents are required to go to the institution to which they matched.
Match Day highlights include:
44 graduates will complete their residencies in Arizona:
- 30 in Tucson (10 primary care)
- 13 in the greater Phoenix area (7 primary care)
- 1 in Flagstaff (primary care)
32 graduates matched with Banner – University Medical Center (BUMC) residency programs in Tucson and Phoenix:
- 25 will train at Banner – University Medical Center Tucson through the College of Medicine – Tucson Graduate Medical Education Program
- 4 will train at Banner – UMC South through the College of Medicine – Tucson South Campus
- 3 will train at the College of Medicine – Phoenix and Banner – UMC Phoenix.
52% of graduates matched into residencies in primary care fields, defined as family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, and obstetrics and gynecology:
- 24% in internal medicine
- 12% in family medicine
- 12% in pediatrics
48% matched into non-primary care specialties:
- 12% in emergency medicine
- 11% in general surgery
- 8% in psychiatry
- 5% in anesthesiology
- 5% in radiology (diagnostic)
Meet the Class of 2022
There were 114 students who matched into residency programs. Below are a few of them.
Madina Jahed matched to a psychiatry residency at Stanford University. She spent her early years in Afghanistan, moving to San Jose, California, with her family when she was 7 years old. She says her early memories of the Taliban regime played a part in her attraction to psychiatry.
“Growing up amongst war, I knew mental health really affected our physical health, so I wanted to dedicate my career to that,” she said. “I wanted to address the mental and emotional needs of patients, because I saw it as something that was lacking in my own culture.”
Phoenix native and first-generation college student Austen Lowell Thompson, PhD, matched into an orthopedic surgery residency at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.
Dr. Thompson received his bachelor’s degree in physiology from the College of Medicine – Tucson, as well as a bachelor’s degree in molecular and cell biology from the College of Science, in 2012, subsequently enrolled in the MD-PhD program at the University of Arizona. In 2020, he completed his doctorate and is set to complete his MD in May.
“I definitely see moving back to Arizona at some point, but I am excited for a different chapter,” he said.
Anna Ressel and Radu Moga will be married in April, and both matched into residencies in family medicine at Banner – UMC South through the College of Medicine – Tucson South Campus, which they said was their first choice.
They came to the ceremony by themselves so they could experience the anxiety and joy in relative privacy.
They opened their envelopes simultaneously.
“I looked at mine immediately, and within a fraction of a section I saw his too and I started crying,” said Ressel.
“Lots of crying,” added Moga. “We’re very happy.”