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Residents utilizing ophthalmology equipment

Upstate Medical University Residency in Ophthalmology

Ophthalmology Residency Program
Upstate Specialty Services at Harrison Center
Suites E and L
550 Harrison Street
Syracuse, NY 13202
Google Maps & Directions
Phone: 315 464-5253
Name: Rachel Kammer, Residency Coordinator
Email: [email protected]
Hours:8:30 am- 4:30 pm M-F
Virtual Tour Meet Our Residents

The Department of Ophthalmology at Upstate Medical University traces its roots back more than 120 years and works to fulfill its motto: "To Learn, To Search, To Serve."

The Department draws on the expertise and dedication of dozens of leading physicians and research scientists to provide medicine with advances in research, innovation in patient care, and quality instruction in the practice of ophthalmology.

The Department's home, the University Center for Vision Care, accommodates a training program for an integrated four-year residency. The program provides a broad-based, high-volume, well-supervised educational experience. Graduates display competency in all areas of comprehensive ophthalmology.

Residents learn in an environment that includes clinic, in-patient and out-patient surgical facilities, a phaco wet lab, inpatient consult service, and sub-specialty consultation. Virtually all ophthalmologists in the surrounding metropolitan area are members of the teaching faculty. Residents have a abundance of educational opportunities which not only include on the job teaching, but also lectures given in the Erie Canal Lecture Series. These lectures are given by the experts in their field from the Ophthalmology residencies of Albany, Buffalo, Rochester, and Upstate.

The department serves four hospitals in the Syracuse metropolitan area – Upstate Medical University Hospital, Golisano Children’s Hospital, Crouse Hospital, and the Veterans Administration Medical Center. These institutions form the primary ophthalmic referral and teaching centers for the approximately two million people residing in the region.

Benefits of an Upstate Ophthalmology Residency

  • Graduates who choose sub-specialization typically obtain top fellowships nationally
  • As a resident-only program, residents are assured in-depth instruction in all subspecialty areas
  • Syracuse, the fourth largest city in New York State, offers an affordable cost of living and easy access to four seasons of outdoor activities


Residents are admitted to the program on the advice of the Residency Selection Committee. The committee encourages competitive candidates to spend a day in the Department, tour the campus, talk with current residents, and interview with the faculty. Grades, test scores, letters of recommendation, and personal interviews all play a role in shaping the committee's decisions.

The program seeks residents who have:

  • A solid academic foundation in basic and clinical sciences
  • Demonstrated teaching skills
  • The ability to effectively and collegially work with co-residents, faculty, support staff, and in small groups

Educational Requirements 

All applicants must have graduated from an allopathic or osteopathic medical school.

All applications are considered for all 4 years of residency. The PGY-1 year is an integrated year that includes 28 weeks of internal medicine, 12 weeks of ophthalmology, and 12 weeks of electives.

All candidates entering residency or fellowship programs at Upstate will be subject to a pre-employment (post-offer) drug test. This includes any prior Upstate resident/fellow who has had a break in service and is returning to employment. For candidates entering residency or fellowship programs at Upstate, drug screening and final results must be available prior to the first day of their program as a prerequisite to employment.

Other Requirements 

  • All candidates entering residency must comply with New York State requirements regarding COVID vaccination and healthcare providers
  • J-1 visas are accepted. H1B visas are not accepted