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Residency Applicants

How to Thrive in Our Program

One of the biggest parts of applying to residency programs is not only choosing programs that not only excel in clinical training and have the training opportunities that you are seeking, but understanding the culture of the program and the types of trainees that thrive in the program's training environment.

What Our Residents Say

When asked to describe the types of residents who thrive in our training program, our residents responded with the following descriptions:

"Residents who are well-rounded do the best. Without question, I would also say our residents enjoy the outdoors like hiking, surfing, skiing, and truly enjoy everything that Southern California has to offer. This focus on balance between both inside and outside the hospital provides the ability to continue personal growth. I think those who have a focus on independence, growth-through-experience, and self-sufficiency are overall happiest here at UC San Diego. A learn-by-doing focus is foundational to the UC San Diego Anesthesiology Department, and those that learn from personal experience appreciate the early independence afforded by the faculty here. The faculty definitely take care in the residents' growth, and develop a trusting relationship with each of us as time progresses. I think our program focuses on the community aspect of the residents, and those that look for support and friendships both inside and outside of the program feel like they have balance here."

"Adaptable — adapt to change quickly and remain composed, resilient — withstand adversity and come out better. Coachable — able to accept feedback graciously and implement changes in one's behavior. Team-player — communicate and function well in a team setting. Conscientious — cares for patients with a strong desire to do good quality work. Independent — able to be responsible enough to supervise oneself."

"Residents who come with a work hard/play hard attitude. Applicants who want to be in a culture where helping colleagues is the norm, rather than the exception. Individuals who embraces early challenges and graded autonomy. Applicants who desire to be a great physician consultant, regardless of their post-residency plans. Those who desire to train in a well-respected department that is valued throughout the hospital, not just the operating rooms and who want to become physician-leaders."

Beginners Mind

At UC San Diego, there is a strong emphasis on taking ownership of your patient and developing the critical thinking skills necessary to be allowed graduated independence as you progress through your training. Individuals who learn by doing, have a "beginner's mind", and who seek out and understand the increased responsibility with increasing independence do exceptionally well and thrive here.


shoshin.jpgShoshin (Japanese)

This is a word from Zen Buddhism meaning "beginner's mind". It refers to having an attitude of openness, eagerness, and lack of preconceptions when studying a subject, even when studying at an advanced level, just as a beginner would.