Residents in the Department of Surgery at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis are part of an academic program with diverse surgical training, strong research opportunities and mentors who are national leaders in their fields.
With residency programs in General Surgery, Plastic Surgery, Urology and Vascular Surgery, residents in every specialty have access to world-class training. What makes each of these programs truly special is the community and camaraderie.
Dr. Chapman is from St. Louis and attended University North Carolina – Chapel Hill for his undergraduate degree in Military History and Defense Policy. His medical school training was also at Georgetown University.
From Franklin, MI, Dr. Krasnick received his undergraduate degree at University of Michigan, receiving a B.S. in Brain Behavior and Cognitive Sciences. He attended Wayne State University for medical school.
Why was WashU the best fit for you?
WCJ: It’s a great combination of top tier clinical training and research opportunities located in an affordable city.
BK: This is an amazing program with no weaknesses. All faculty are easy to talk to and focused on resident education. There is a plethora of research opportunities. St. Louis is a great city that is easy to live and work in with a low cost of living.
What makes WashU attendings special? Is there a memorable moment with a mentor you could share?
WCJ: It’s very committed to resident education. The time taken in the ORs to let residents work through procedures, the commitment to developing and staffing the WISE lab, and affable relationships between faculty throughout the department demonstrate this.
BK: It’s special to always be included in holiday dinners with the attending group.
What is a valuable piece of advice you’ve received from faculty?
WCJ: When applying to residency: “Follow the cranes.” This means go to a program that is growing. Growth demonstrates vitality as well as an active influx of patients and resources that make the clinical experience rich.
BK: “Under-commit and over-deliver.”
What do you like about research at WashU, and what are your research interests?
WCJ: The breadth of opportunities for partners outside the lab in which you work. There are so many brilliant researchers on the medical campus who want and need good clinical partners. Teaming with these groups has been a key to my success in academics.
BK: At WashU, any and all research projects and opportunities are on the table. This includes basic translational science as well as clinical outcomes research. There are also multiple different advanced degrees available to pursue, depending on your individual interests and career goals.
What do you like most about your fellow residents?
WCJ: Everyone is committed to caring for patients and, most importantly, sharing the patient care burden so that no one is stuck with all of it at any given time.
BK: Everyone is hard working and there for each other no matter what.
What is your favorite resident team bonding/event/outing and why?
WCJ: Annual retreats and casual activity. These are great moment to relax with friends in a common space that otherwise almost never happens – no one is on call!
BK: Paint ball with co-residents and attending!
What do you plan to do after graduation?
WCJ: I plan to move on to a colorectal surgery fellowship.
BK: I aim to be an academic colorectal surgeon.
What advice do you have for those applying for residency?
WCJ: Go to the place where you can be most productive in all aspects of life: professional, personal, financial, etc. If snow skiing 50 days a year is key to your happiness, do residency in the mountains! If you want to start a family, go to a program that is supportive and a location where that is financially feasible. And don’t forget the corollary – do not go to a program based only on a single individual faculty member! You may commit to that program only to hear a year later that they are moving on.
BK: Pay attention to how the residents seem to get along. Try your best to be yourself and have fun during the process.
What is your favorite thing about living in St. Louis?
WCJ: Safe, affordable neighborhoods with storied architecture and rich culture, at half the price of East Coast equivalent!
BK: So many good restaurants, all within a 10-15 minute drive. Vicia, Peacemaker, Union Loafers, Louie and so many more!
What are your top 3 places to go in St. Louis?
- Outdoor places, like Elephant Rocks State Park and Black River
- Tower Grove Park and Missouri Botanical Gardens
- Olio (great neighborhood restaurant)
- Busch Stadium
- The St. Louis Zoo
- Forest Park
Is there anything about St. Louis that surprised you?
BK: The great restaurant scene!
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
WCJ: Getting outside with the kids and dog as much as possible.
BK: Reading or listening to books and hanging out with my wife and two daughters.
What do you do to check in with yourself and ensure your wellness is a priority?
WCJ: Getting outside! I love to hunt and fish, and I’ve made a number of connections throughout Barnes in these areas over the years. A CRNA and I make it to the water every 6-8 weeks, which is quite a feat considering our call schedules and both having young kids.
BK: Using my peloton, working out in Forest Park and going on runs with my daughter through the WashU undergrad campus.
Washington University Residencies
To learn more about residency programs at Washington University School of Medicine, visit https://surgery.wustl.edu/education/. For information about the General Surgery residency program, visit http://gsres.wustl.edu/.