The big match

The letter, sealed in an envelope, contained the only words Asma Eisa wanted to see: UF College of Medicine-Jacksonville, pediatrics.

“My husband is an intern there,” Eisa said. “That is the only place I wanted to go. I am happy. Three years, guaranteed.”

On March 19, Eisa and 112 of her classmates in the College of Medicine Class of 2009 learned where they will complete their residency training, during the college’s annual Match Day ceremony. The National Resident Matching Program matches prospective residents to residencies using a mathematical algorithm that compiles students’ and institutions’ top choices. The decision is pivotal for medical students and determines not only where they will complete their residencies but what specialties they will enter.

Among UF’s current crop of fourth-year medical students, pediatrics was the top choice for residencies, with 17 students entering this field.

“I just really like the kids, and I thought it would be something I would be comfortable doing,” Eisa said.
“You try to eliminate everything else.”

Other top choices for UF medical students included family medicine and emergency medicine, among others.

Thirty-three medical students will remain in Florida for their residencies, including 20 at UF. Overall, UF will receive 130 new residents in Gainesville beginning in July and 72 new residents at the regional campus in Jacksonville.

“We bring a great number of physicians to the state,” said Michael L. Good, M.D., interim dean of the College of Medicine. “Although a lot of our students leave Florida many more are coming into the state to do their residencies.”