As an academic program we encourage scholarly activity of our residents. This does not mean that we require all of our residents to take time off for a dedicated research experience. However, should you be interested in one or two years of basic or clinical research, we provide you with opportunities to do so.
Currently we have three basic science research laboratories within the Department, but some of our residents have had very successful research years off campus. We currently have one resident each at NIH, Vanderbilt University and the University of Virginia. There they are engaged in research in surgical oncology, thoracic surgery and plastic surgery.
Dr Kollisch has joined us as a fifth pediatric surgeon in October 2020 and she is co-managing the Nieman lab. She is specifically interested in exploring the role of the microbiome and exosomal miRNA signaling in disease propagation of sepsis, meconium aspiration and necrotizing enterocolitis. The laboratory has prided itself in being open to new ideas and is flexible in developing different projects that are targeted to individual resident interests.
For residents that prefer to complete the program in 5 years, we provide alternative opportunities for scholarly work. We are very open to research projects related to outcomes and quality improvement, as many of our faculty members have an interest and expertise in this arena.
We have multiple faculty members with either formal training or a strong interest in outcomes and quality improvement research and are always looking for residents to collaborate with.
Moreover, there are plenty of clinical research opportunities available, due to the large number and complexity of the patients we see in our institution. Some of our divisions are involved in clinical trials, which interested residents can participate in.
Finally, we have increasing opportunities for educational research. For example, our program has been one of the original 12 institutions (e.g. Northwestern, Harvard, Indiana University) in the American Board of Surgery supported SIMPL trial to assess resident performance in the operating room. The study was presented at the American Surgical in 2017. Since then the project has expanded to over 100 programs and more than 200 000 performance evaluations have been submitted. Currently, we participate in the VITALs trial that attempts to create national learning curves for standard surgical procedures based on this continuously expanding dataset.