The Department of Surgery congratulates our class of 2020-2021 graduating General Surgery Chief Residents.
While they will be missed, we are pleased to see the Chiefs successfully move on to the next phase of their careers as they continue their surgical training in fellowships across the country. We are confident that they will accomplish great things and become leaders in surgery. We also celebrate the contributions of their loved ones, family and friends without whom the Chiefs’ success would not be possible.
Administrative Chief Resident Darren Cullinan, MD, MSCI, earned his medical degree from the University of Tennessee School of Medicine. During his lab time in the Washington University General Surgery Residency, Cullinan designed and implemented a clinical trial in pancreatic cancer under the mentorship of HPB-GI Section Chief and Neidorff Family and Robert C. Packman Professor of Surgery William Hawkins, MD, and William Gillanders, MD, the Mary Culver Professor of Surgery. Cullinan remains at the School of Medicine, where he will pursue an abdominal organ transplant fellowship.
Administrative Chief Resident Roheena Panni, MD, MPHS, earned her medical degree from Aga Khan University in Karachi, Pakistan. Panni first visited Washington University in St. Louis as a sub-intern in HPB-GI surgery during her fourth year of medical school. As a lab resident, she earned a Master’s in Population Health Sciences degree and completed a two-year surgical oncology research fellowship at the School of Medicine. Panni begins a complex general surgical oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center this year.
Gayan De Silva, MD, MS, earned his medical degree from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine. De Silva joined the Zayed Laboratory during his research years, where he published in basic science, clinical outcomes, and translational research, and became co-inventor of a novel suction thrombectomy device for arterial and venous thromboembolic disease. De Silva remains at the School of Medicine as a vascular surgery fellow.
Rahul Handa, MD, earned his medical degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. Handa returned to St. Louis for general surgery training, saing, “This is the best program in the world. Period. There’s nowhere else in the world I would rather have trained to be a surgeon.” Handa continues his training as a cardiothoracic surgery fellow at the University of California – Los Angeles.
Kelly Koch, MD, earned her medical degree from University of Michigan School of Medicine. As a general surgery resident, Koch felt like coming to Washington University in St. Louis was like joining a family. Koch especially appreciated the calm and collected OR demeanor of Michael Awad, MD, PhD. “I hope to command the OR in a respectful and efficient way that he does,” Koch says. Koch continues her training in Miami as a surgical oncology fellow.
Jared McAllister, MD, earned his medical degree at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, where he remained for general surgery residency training. As a resident, McAllister joined the minimally invasive surgery laboratory and, as he says, “the rest was history.” McAllister starts a fellowship in minimally invasive surgery at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland later this year.
Linda Schulte, MD, earned her medical degree at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. As a resident, Schulte completed two years of research in the Hawkins Lab and was accepted as a fellow in cardiothoracic surgery. She continues her fellowship training in cardiothoracic surgery at the School of Medicine following graduation this year.
Tara Semenkovich, MD, MPHS, earned her medical degree Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Semenkovich won the Society for Thoracic Surgeons Preseident’s Award for her multisite study of adjuvant therapy for esophageal cancer. She continues her surgical training as a cardiothoracic surgery fellow at the School of Medicine.
Wen Hui Tan, MD, earned her medical degree from Washington University in St. Louis, where she completed a sub-internship in Minimally Invasive Surgery. Tan worked under the mentorship of Acute and Critical Care Surgery Section Chief Grant Bochicchio, MD, MPH, Jeffrey Blatnik, MD, and Minimally Invasive Surgery Section Chief Michael Brunt, MD, on numerous research projects, including an investigation of postoperative opioid use. Tan continues her surgical training as a minimally invasive surgery fellow at the Medical College of Wisconsin.
Congratulations to the graduating class of 2020-2021 General Surgery Chief Residents!