Members of the University of Nevada, Reno School of Medicine (UNR Med) Class of 2022 celebrated the next step in their journey to become physicians on March 18 as they learned where they will train for their residencies and in what field of specialty.
The 70 fourth-year UNR Med students joined tens of thousands of graduating medical students for Match Day, an honored medical school tradition, an annual rite of passage and one of the most pivotal moments in medical education simultaneously observed by medical students across the country.
The event, held at the Atlantis Casino Resort Spa, marked the first time since 2019 that gathering restrictions permitted an in-person match celebration.
“Today, we celebrate all that you have accomplished during your years at UNR Med,” Melissa Piasecki, M.D., acting dean, told the students. “We also celebrate what you will accomplish as residents, as physicians and as trusted professionals who bring healing skills to thousands of patients throughout your specialty career.”
Residency training location is a strong indication of where physicians will likely practice medicine following completion of residency and has significant implications for the future availability of health care professionals in a given area. About 15% of UNR Med students are staying in Nevada for some part of their training, and more than half matched in primary care and mental health, which includes family medicine, internal medicine, internal medicine/pediatrics, pediatrics and obstetrics/gynecology.
A Healthy Nevada is UNR Med’s vision, and expanding and retaining Nevada’s physician workforce is critical to the school’s community-based and community-engaged curriculum model. According to the Office of Statewide Initiatives’ Health Workforce in Nevada report, Nevada continues to confront widespread shortages of physicians in areas such as family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, psychiatry, surgery and more.
“UNR Med is committed to raising the number of doctors in Nevada,” Dr. Piasecki said. “Through educating excellent medical students, retaining them as residents and ultimately as practicing physicians, we can meet the growing needs of our state. Expanding our residency training programs’ size and the range of specialties are golden opportunities within UNR Med’s affiliation with Renown Health to grow Nevada’s physician workforce.”
UNR Med has residency programs in internal medicine, family medicine and psychiatry. This year, five UNR Med residency spots were filled by UNR Med students.
The Match is a competitive process for residency and fellowship applications. During their final year of medical school, medical students apply to their preferred residency programs. Applicants and program directors score each other’s preferences and submit the lists to the National Resident Matching Program. The NRMP then matches applicants’ preferences with residency program directors’ preferences to fill training spots available at U.S. teaching hospitals.