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Surgery and subspecialties clerkship

Clerkship and Subspecialties

Contact: Rebecca Bellini, Academic Program Administrator, MSIII and MSIV
Location: SUNY Upstate Medical University
Department of Surgery, Room 8602
750 E. Adams Street, Syracuse, New York 13210
Email: bellinir@upstate.edu
Phone: 315 464-6248

The Surgery Clerkship introduces students to the medical management of surgical disease and the principals of caring for the surgical patient. The course is designed to enable students to recognize problems of a surgical nature, to understand the relevant pathophysiology, and to give some familiarity with the risks and benefits involved with surgical therapy.


The Clerkship Schedule

In order to maximize rotation opportunities, the Surgery and Emergency Medicine Clerkships work together to share time a 10 week, longitudinal, clerkship block.  However, both clerkships are still considered independent with their own grading systems, requirements, and objectives.

The Surgery Clerkship portion of the 10 week block is 7 weeks in duration

Students will be expected to participate, as part of the team, in all contributions to the management of patient care including:   

  • Daily rounds: writing progress notes, assisting in the admission of new patients, and writing student orders.
  • Clinic: performing history and physical exams, assisting with initial patient evaluations, and participating in pre and post operative evaluations discussions.
  • Operating Room: under the supervision of attending, students will be expected to assist in surgical procedures, as well as contribute to the patient’s pre and post operative evaluation phases.       

Orientation: Skills Training/The Operating Room

Students are required to attend initial orientation that includes suturing and knot tying training.  They are also required to watch the "Upstate Surgical Scrub" video and "Welcome to the OR" presentation. 

Core Didactic Sessions

Core didactic sessions are required through Wise MD Case and Skills Modules and Core Sub-specialty lectures.

*General Surgery

One,  three to five week General Surgery block (*a minimum of three weeks is required)
Depending on site location, the following General Surgery services may be offered:

  • Acute Care Surgery
  • Advanced Laparoscopy
  • Burns
  • Consults
  • Pediatric Surgery
  • SICU
  • Surgical Oncology 1 (Hepatobiliary)
  • Surgical Oncology 2 (Breast, Thyroid, Plastics, Colorectal)
  • Thoracic
  • Transplant
  • Trauma
  • Vascular
  • As well as general surgery services at affiliated sites including Community General Hospital and the VA Hospital


One to two, two week Sub-specialty block(s) (**a minimum of one,  two week sub-specialty block is required).
Depending on site location, the following sub-specialties services may be offered:

  • Anesthesiology
  • Orthopedic Surgery
  • Otolaryngology
  • Urology