Resident Life

Assuring that each resident has a high quality of life is an extremely high priority for our program. We believe that managing stress and maintaining a healthy life outside of residency improves residents' ability to learn and to care for patients most effectively.

Living in Rochester

Rochester is a wonderfully livable community. It is a mid-sized city that offers a great range of cultural activities, including an incredible music scene (in part because of the presence of the Eastman School of Music); numerous festivals, including the annual Jazz Festival and the Lilac Festival; a large number of outstanding restaurants; and great school systems. At the same time, the cost of living is very low (many residents own houses), and traffic and commute times are minimal. It takes literally minutes to go from anywhere in Rochester to one of the beautiful parks in the greater Rochester area or to get outside of town to enjoy an enormous range of outdoor activities in the Finger Lakes region, including skiing, wine tasting, and spectacular hikes (such as along the gorges in Letchworth Park and Watkins Glen). Links with additional information about living in Rochester are to the right.

A common misconception is that the weather in Rochester is bad. In fact, winters are less cold than in many other cities, with an average high temperature in January (the coldest month) of 32 degrees F; sure we get snow, but many residents embrace and celebrate the snow, which offers great skiing, snowshoeing, and sledding options. The spring, summer and fall are all wonderfully enjoyable.

Residency Program Life Balance

The residency program offers a variety of different types of programs to try to help residents cope with the stresses of residency and to improve their residency experience:

  • Mentoring lunches: In these monthly lunches, small groups, led by one of the program directors, discuss some of the more challenging issues facing medicine residents, such as managing stress, coping with patient death, and finding balance between medicine and residents' personal life.
  • Balint group meetings: this optional meeting format offers interested residents the opportunity to discuss challenges they've encountered in a small group of residents with a trained Balint group facilitator
  • Monthly business meetings: each month we bring together available residents during a noon conference to address challenges faced by the residents and the residency program. These meetings allow open forum discussions of whatever is on our residents' minds.
  • Class meetings: we bring each resident class together separately several times per year to listen to how they are doing and to what types of problems they are encountering in residency. These sessions often lead to improvements in the program.
  • New resident orientation: in addition to required training (such as for our electronic medical record) and education about policies and procedures, we build a number of fun social and team-building events into our new residents' orientation in an effort to help our new interns get to know each other quickly and to begin to see Rochester as their home.
  • R2 skills block: between the end of intern year and the start of their second year of residency, all categorical and research pathway residents are provided coverage for a 2-day period in which a number of high yield topics are taught, including how to lead a floor team, how to teach on the wards, providing effective consultation, and additional procedural and code training.
  • R3 career and fellowship guidance: towards the end of their second year and in the beginning of their third year, residents are invited to attend sessions about applying to fellowship, searching for and applying for jobs, and negotiating contracts.

Residency Program Social Events (a partial list)

Our residents enjoy each others' company inside and outside the hospital. Their schedule allows them to take advantage of the many activities that Rochester and the surrounding region has to offer. Please use the links at right to learn more about these opportunities. In addition to resident-arranged social events, the residency program arranges a variety of fun activities during the course of each year:

fare thee welcome picnicbills gameFare-Thee-Welcome Picnic: Each year, after the new PGY1's arrive for orientation and before the graduating PGY3's leave, program faculty, residents, spouses, significant others and families get together to say hello and goodbye.

happy hourProgram Happy Hours: Sprinked throughout the year, these evening get-together's at local venues bring together faculty members, residents, spouses, significant others and families.

retreatR1 Retreat: In late September all first-year residents are excused from rotations for a day-long retreat held at beautiful Letchworth State Park, south of Rochester. The morning is spent in small group workshops on topics like "Balancing Personal and Professional Life" while the afternoon is devoted to outdoor activities including white water rafting, hiking, cycling, and golf.

Holiday PartyDepartment of Medicine Holiday Party: In early January, the department provides coverage for every resident to attend this epic party with fabulous food and lots of dancing.

R2 Dinner: In the late spring, all R2's go out to dinner with the program directors to relax, have fun, and reflect on what's past and what lies ahead.

Resident Appreciation Day: Details vary from year to year, but don't be surprised to be served breakfast by the Department Chairs and the Program Director!

R3 Graduation: Faculty members, spouses, significant others, parents and families celebrate third year residents' graduation with a ceremony and dinner at the George Eastman House.

jeopardyAnnual Jeopardy Contest and Awards Ceremony: At the last Grand Rounds of each year, a resident team and a faculty team square off for a heated game of medical jeopardy. This is followed by our annual awards ceremony.

Resident Couples

Rochester is a great place for resident couples. We have a long history of working with other residency programs to coordinate our residents' schedules with those of their significant other in other programs. In each of the past 2 years about a quarter of our interns matched as part of a resident couple.