LECOM celebrates 'Match Day'
ELMIRA, N.Y. (WENY) -- Medical students at Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine celebrated Match Day at Elmira College, Friday afternoon. The medical school is sending its students off to residency programs across the nation.
Dr. Richard Terry, the Associate Dean at LECOM, said this year's graduating class is extra special. This year's class had 100 percent acceptance into residency programs of their choice.
“100 percent of 540 graduates, from our three campuses...LECOM does not graduate until next year...all found a spot,” he said. “It's really quite amazing, actually.”
Dr. Richard said it is highly competitive for students to find a residence program in any part of the country, especially for fields in surgery, radiology, and dermatology.
This year is special for a couple that has been together since they were in undergrad. Alexa Smith and Clayton Vasey starting dating their sophomore year. They wanted to take their relationship to the next level by finding a location that was a perfect fit for their respective career paths.
“We've gone to LECOM together, gone through medical school together, and here we are...matching together now,” Smith said.
Smith is undergoing a residency in general surgery; Vasey is as well in internal medicine. They were both accepted at UPMC Harrisburg in Pennsylvania.
“The first time I stepped into an operating room, I knew that's where I wanted to be,” she said. “I saw all the shiny instruments in front of me and I said, 'I want to learn how to use these.'”
In regard to a specialty, it was the opposite for Vasey.
“I wanted to stay away from the shiny instruments,” he said. “I like to build relationships with my patients...it's really the main reason I wanted family med, but also, just...how much I could learn and stay broad in my scope.”
Student Valerie Fiore is going into a general surgery residency program at St. John's Episcopal Hospital in Rockaway, Queens. Fiore is a Queens native. Fiore is excited to go back and help people from the place she calls home.
“I am so happy I get to go home...I get to serve my community,” she said. “That's a huge thing to me.”
Fiore spent years of her life researching a career path into surgery. After networking through LECOM, she felt confident in her decision to move forward.
“I loved surgery...I knew I wanted to do it from the beginning,” she said.