PL2 Pediatric Residents

PL2 Pediatric Residents

Corrie Alonzo
Virginia Commonwealth University

Corrie Alonzo

Hey everyone, welcome to UVA Pediatrics! I am so excited you want to learn more about our program! The faculty and residents here are absolutely wonderful and I could not ask to work with a more compassionate and driven group of individuals. After just a few short months into my intern year, my peers already feel like family.

Not only is Charlottesville a great place to work, it is also a great place to live. I am originally from Colorado and completed my Physiology degree at the University of Colorado in Boulder. From there, my husband and I moved to Richmond, VA so I could attend medical school at VCU. We were ecstatic to learn on Match Day that we would soon move to Charlottesville. It has a small town feel and yet there are numerous things to do and places to go. Our days off typically consist of going to an orchard or winery, checking out the farmer’s market, taking a walk on the Downtown mall, listening to some great music at Friday’s After 5, trying out a new restaurant, taking a tour of Monticello, or going for a hike.

We cannot wait to meet you and please contact me if you have any questions!

Katherine Clark
University of Vermont

Katherine Clark

Hello, and welcome to UVA Pediatrics! This is truly a wonderful place to be. I grew up in Connecticut and completed my undergraduate degree at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. I then went to medical school at the University of Vermont. When looking at residency programs, I wanted to find a place with a collegial atmosphere where academics and education were valued. I wanted a hospital that was big enough that I would be exposed to a variety of patients, but small enough that I would get to know the attendings, fellows, and residents with whom I worked. UVA pediatrics residency program offered all of those characteristics. UVA Pediatrics is filled with great people at every level of training who help to make the experience of caring for our patients both educational and fun. I look forward to coming to work to see my co-residents, but we also do social things together outside of the hospital.

Although I have spent the majority of my life in New England, I am loving Charlottesville. It is the perfect size city in which to live; it is small enough that places are easy to get to, that you randomly see people you know, and there is not bad traffic, but it also has so much going on in terms of food, music, and culture. There are great places to run and bike, and the Shenandoah national park is just a short drive away with so many great hikes and incredible views. There are also many wineries, breweries and great restaurants in the area.

Please let me know if I can be helpful in any way during your interview process. I wish you the best of luck in your residency search and look forward to meeting you during interview season. I would love to have the opportunity to work with you next year if you decide that this is where you want to be!

Zachary Coffman
Medical University of South Carolina

Zachary Coffman

Hey everyone! Congratulations on choosing pediatrics and welcome to UVA! Although I’m lacking that delightful southern accent, I grew up in the upstate of South Carolina. When college rolled around, I went to the University of South Carolina (Go Gamecocks!) and then traveled a little further south to MUSC in Charleston, SC for medical school. When searching for a residency program I knew I wanted a medium to small-sized program that provided great exposure to a wide range of subspecialties while also providing a strong foundation in general pediatrics. Although I had already heard amazing things about UVA, the faculty and residents were some of the most approachable and friendly people I could find. UVA offers an incredibly close-knit and supportive environment with the added bonus of one of the nation’s best academic medical centers. The faculty are incredible and love to teach, and the residents are pretty much the best people in existence.

Although I traded the beaches of Charleston for the mountains of Charlottesville, I couldn’t be happier with my choice. Charlottesville is an awesome town with an unbelievable number of restaurants, breweries, and wineries to visit, and a music scene rivaling some of the best places in the country. There is never a shortage of things to do, and with our incredible residency program there are always amazing people to join you. Although it was hard to leave the land of 70-degree winters, my wife and I were extremely happy to find a new home at UVA.

I’m happy you’re considering UVA for your residency and we hope you enjoy your stay in C’ville. Good luck on your interviews and please let me know if you have any questions!

David Finkler
University of Virginia

David Finkler

Hey all! I am proud to call Charlottesville my home going on 9 years now! I'm what is known as a "Triple Hoo", having completed my undergraduate and medical training at the University of Virginia as well. One of my favorite parts of UVA's program is the atmosphere of academia but in a way that's very down-to-earth. It is full of people who work hard but love what they do and come to work with a smile on their face. Laughter is commonplace in our morning report sessions of residents and faculty.

Charlottesville is a beautiful and welcoming city with gorgeous mountain views and four great seasons. The downtown pedestrian mall is full of great shops and restaurants, and home to weekly outdoor concerts during the summer. It has something to offer to everyone. Our residents really are a great group who enjoy spending time together both in and out of the hospital. There are excursions to wineries, poker nights with the guys, concerts and festivals, hiking, and breweries all at your fingertips.

Good luck and best wishes with the interview process! We're more than happy to answer any questions that come up.

Erin Kalan
West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine

Erin KalanHello, everyone! I am so excited to welcome you to the UVA Pediatrics Residency Program! I am originally from Orange, Virginia and attended UVA for my undergraduate years. I left Charlottesville for medical school in West Virginia and have finally returned home to UVA. I am honored to be here and to be a part of such a unique and special group of individuals. This department truly is resident centered in that our learning is paramount and our faculty memebers are all deeply committed to our education in conjunction with our well being. The residents here truly are one team as we all work together in providing the absolute best care to our patients and in supporting each other through the challenges that residency presents.

Charlottesville is such a lovely place to live as it offers so much and caters to so many interests. From hiking and biking trails to awesome music and countless restaurants, this small city has a great variety in culture and activities. I personally enjoy bluegrass music and have been playing the banjo for many years. There are plenty of bluegrass shows here and in the surrounding area. But there are, of course, many other musical options that come to town as well. There is always something fun going on in C'ville and we are all most definitely able to enjoy ourselves during our off days!

I am very happy to answer any questions you may have about UVA, so please feel free to contact me. I look forward to meeting you at your interview and the best of luck!

Benjamin Lewis
University of Tennessee

Benjamin Lewis

Hey y’all! I grew up in the hills of east Tennessee (GO VOLS!) and went to the University of Tennessee for medical school. Although my wife and I loved our time in Memphis (GO GRIZZLIES!), we really missed the mountains and decided that it was best for us to move back east to be closer to family.

Our faculty and housestaff are extremely supportive, which has created a culture where we interns know that our learning is prioritized. Outside of the hospital, we have incredible camaraderie within our class, so we’re always looking for ways to hang out. Besides the fact that our residency program is awesome, one unique thing about us is that we’re one of the very few academic programs located in a small town setting. Given that Charlottesville is such an incredibly cosmopolitan town, located at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains, I couldn’t have dreamed of a more ideal place to be during my residency training. In addition to having access to a variety of cultural and recreational activities here in the city, we are within a 30-minute drive to the Blue Ridge Parkway and Shenandoah National Park. And, as if the mountains weren’t enough, we are within a few hours drive to Washington D.C., Atlantic beaches and world class whitewater rafting.

Thanks for considering interviewing with us!  If you have any questions, please feel free to e-mail me. Take it easy and enjoy the interview trail!

Thomas Ratchford
University of Virginia

Thomas Ratchford

Hi everyone! I’m originally from Tampa, FL, and went to the University of Florida for undergrad, where I was a history major. I then came up to UVA for medical school and haven’t left since! I was initially attracted to UVA because of its strong academics, remarkably nice people, and beautiful setting, and during medical school I really found these qualities to be true. As I became exposed to the Pediatrics Department, I noticed pretty early on that the attendings were all very approachable and loved to teach, and that the residents really got along with one another. I was also impressed with how collegial the program was as a whole—morning report is always well-attended by attendings and residents and people are always willing to teach and explain things. It wasn’t until I started looking for programs for residency that I realized how special that makes UVA Peds.

Besides those somewhat intangible factors, I came to UVA because it is a medium-sized program with the training perks of being in a large city (there is a huge range of pathologies and socioeconomic statuses) due to its large catchment area, but without the hassles of urban sprawl. That said, Charlottesville is an awesome city. While it is minutes from the mountains and has countless running and biking trails, it has a ton of cool restaurants and more high-end grocery stores (Whole Foods, TJs, Fresh Market, Wegmans-coming soon) per capita than is probably sane.

But I ramble…Feel free to email me if you have any questions about the program, and I hope to meet you soon!

Gregory Sturz
Edward Via Virginia College of Osteopathic Medicine

Gregory Sturz

Sarah Turse
Virginia Commonwealth University

Sarah Turse

Hello! I grew up in Medford, NJ and moved to Virginia for undergrad at James Madison University. Once I moved to Virginia I never wanted to leave! I spent some time in Arlington, Va and then went to medical school at Virginia Commonwealth University (MCV) in Richmond.

Central Virginia is a wonderful place to live, go to school, and be a resident. I was attracted to UVA pediatrics because of the geographical location, but also because of the wonderful atmosphere here. It is an excellent environment for learning, from lectures and hands-on patient care. Everyone was so nice when I was here for my interview and away rotation and they are just as pleasant to work with as a resident!

Abigail Van Wyk
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey

Abigail Van Wyk

Hi everyone, and welcome to UVA! I hail from Chatham, NJ, a small town about an hour west of Manhattan. Despite my strong Jersey loyalties, after high school I wanted to explore a different part of the country, so I headed south to Rice University in Houston, TX. I spent four wonderful years at Rice, and then came back to New Jersey for medical school at Robert Wood Johnson.

At the beginning of interview season, I wasn't really sure what I was looking for – you can only tell so much from a website and anecdotal information. Almost everywhere you'll go this fall/winter will be capable of providing a great education, but it's important to find a place where you feel comfortable and at home. Making a match list is stressful, but I'm so glad I chose to come to Charlottesville. I love living here! Perhaps during your interview visit, you'll have time to take advantage of some of the amazing restaurants, beautiful wineries, or great hiking trails, but even if your time here is rushed, know that it's an amazing place to call home.

Richard Vo
University of Texas

Richard Vo

What's up, guys! Welcome to Charlottesville. I am from the great state of Texas where I was born and bred and never left until I started residency. I grew up in Houston, attended undergrad in Houston/Dallas where I majored in biology and Christian studies, and then medical school in Galveston (who doesn’t like the ocean?). Given the type of people that pediatrics attracts, overall the people at all the programs where I interviewed were really nice. The biggest draw to UVA for me was that UVA felt like a large extended family of really brilliant faculty and residents. I was able to spend a month here during my 4th year and realized that not only was my education a pivotal part of the program, but the atmosphere of genuine compassion for each other was rather unique.

Aside from the people, I would say that Charlottesville is nothing like the metroplex cities I am used to. Given my city and Asian background, I was never really exposed to the great outdoors. It wasn't until undergrad that I realized I really liked being outside and started rock climbing, hiking, and surfing (yes, in Texas). Although the climbing and surfing may be sparse around here, the hiking and activities you can do outside are pretty fantastic. Did I mention the abundance of breweries and wineries within a 1-hour radius of C'ville?

I hope y'all consider making UVA your top choice. I also forgot: The food here is pretty legit, but if there is only one thing you get from reading this, it's that you should go to "Mels" and order the fried chicken w/ mac n'cheese & collard greens.

Stephanie Waterhouse
Texas Tech University

Stephanie Waterhouse

Hey! I am so happy that you are considering UVA for residency. I was born and raised in Amarillo, TX and went to Southern Nazarene University in Oklahoma City for undergrad. I spent almost 2 years in Northern Virginia attending a Master's program at Georgetown between undergrad and medical school. I returned to Texas to begin medical school at Texas Tech. When I started interviewing for residency I wasn't exactly sure what I was looking for in a program. I initially thought that a large program in a big city was what I wanted, but along the interview trail I learned otherwise. After interviewing at UVA I realized I was comparing every program to UVA. At UVA the attending physicians regularly attend Morning Report offering years of knowledge and experience to the residents. Even after one interview I could tell that the residents care about each other and invest in each other's lives and education.

Not to mention, Charlottesville is a wonderful place to live. It has all the amenities of a big city, without the traffic, and with all the outdoor activities you could want just minutes away. I am so happy with my decision to spend the next three years learning at UVA. If you decide to come to UVA you will be training with enthusiastic physicians dedicated to teaching and you can spend your weekends off exploring the wineries, attending concerts and festivals, or hiking the Blue Ridge Mountains as I often do. I have made lifelong friendships with my fellow residents, and I am so grateful to be in such a supportive learning environment.

Don't hesitate to contact me with any questions as you visit programs throughout the year. Best of luck and hope to see you next summer!