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A Match Day Like No Other

School of Medicine conducts virtual Match Day celebration
a couple standing in their home holds up their match day letters for all to see

Match Day 2020 was like no other. Because of coronavirus concerns, the usual bustle bordering on bedlam at the School of Medicine was replaced by quiet, empty hallways.

There also was a video-streamed and email presentation of where the more than 100 graduates-to-be will serve their medical residencies, leaving them to smaller individual celebrations.

Interim Dean Mary Anne Jackson, M.D., addressed students, their families, faculty and friends with a video message. She congratulated the UMKC Class of 2020 for its hard work of the past six years and called Match Day a rite of passage that is this year all the more significant in light of the pandemic gripping the nation.

“When facing pandemics in the past, physicians have recognized a professional duty to care for patients, even in these difficult circumstances,” Jackson said. “That is why today I emphasize the human side of medicine. Today you promise to commit to put patients first, to always try to be worthy of the privilege of caring for patients, and that you will continue to pursue the education that ensures the care you provide is cutting edge and the best practice.”

Students and their residency matches were revealed as part of the on-line video production.

Just more than half of the UMKC class will be headed to a primary care residency in internal medicine, family medicine, obstetrics/gynecology, or pediatrics. That exceeds the national average and is in line with the school’s mission to provide primary care for the Kansas City area, Missouri and the rest of the Midwest.

While students celebrated at home, some took to social media to share their good news. Student couple Mike VanDillen and Ariana Foutouhi were excited to find that they matched together. See their post below. 

Facebook post from Mike VanDillen describing his and Ariana Fotouhi's both matching at University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis; the couple in the photo, the couple is hugging after reading the news on their laptops

The students won assignments in 27 states and the District of Columbia, from Massachusetts to Hawaii and California to Florida. Missouri had 31 of the placements, followed by 11 in Illinois, 10 in Florida, eight in Texas, five in Kentucky and four each in Kansas and California.

And, as usual, some are headed to the top names in medicine, including Mayo, Stanford, the Cleveland Clinic, Harvard, the University of Chicago and UCLA. Twenty-two will stay at UMKC and its affiliate hospitals; a baker’s dozen will be elsewhere in Missouri and Kansas.

Internal medicine was the top category with 39 placements — eight of whom will move on to sub-specialties after a year — followed by 14 in pediatrics or medicine-pediatrics, nine in family medicine, seven in general surgery, six each in anesthesiology and emergency medicine, and five in obstetrics/gynecology.

Jackson said in her message that the soon-to-be residents will join the front line of physicians and health care professional across the country playing a key role in caring for patients and responding to the current health crisis.

“Know that you as resident providers will take the knowledge you’ve learned here, that you will be a partner in the preparation and response that is critical at this time, that you will be the calm that stabilizes those who are afraid, and that you will be the kind, compassionate physician that is the hallmark of our School of Medicine,” Jackson said.

“Congratulations as we celebrate with you today, Match Day 2020.”

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Published: Mar 23, 2020

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