Of all the places I interviewed, I genuinely believe that IU School of Medicine offered the most well rounded experience. This is the only major academic medical institution in the state. With that large catchment area comes a large volume of cases, which is very conducive to learning. The medical campus in Indianapolis is huge, consisting of four large general hospitals and one children’s hospital, offering a wide range of opportunities and experiences.
Our main lab is easily one of the nicest facilities I saw while on the interview trail, if not the nicest. It functions as a rigorous academic institution with a great deal of sub-specialization, well-known faculty, and plenty of opportunities for research. As a resident, you will also spend time at the newly renovated county hospital (Eskenazi) and the VA, which offer a feel that is more consistent with that of community practice and allow for a greater level of autonomy. The combined experience between the main lab and the two ancillary hospitals (Eskenazi and the VA) provides a well-balanced training experience; the best of both worlds. All of these facilities are within close proximity to one another, making travel between facilities relatively straightforward.
As for the program itself, the work is abundant and challenging, but not overly burdensome. I have found the administration to be very supportive and sympathetic to the demands of residency. The support provided from the administration is equaled by that of my co-residents, who have all been incredibly warm and welcoming. Additionally, I have found my attendings to be very approachable and often willing to go out of their way to answer questions and demonstrate findings.
Indianapolis is a great city to live in and I find it to be the perfect size. There are more than enough things to do, yet it is still very navigable. We have two top tier professional sports teams (Pacers and Colts) for any football or basketball fans. We have a minor league hockey and a minor league baseball team as well. There are many fun restaurants and bars in the area, including multiple breweries. The people are friendly, the traffic is minimal, and it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg to live here.
Why I chose IU: I chose IU because I wanted to go to a program that would provide me with enough diversity and number of cases to become a great diagnostician. I also wanted a large program with enough residents to provide coverage in the case of needed absences and to provide a good support structure for each other. Finally, I wanted a program where all the residents were happy and enjoyed spending time with each other outside of work.
Personal Interests: Fly-fishing, video games, listening to metal, watching Netflix
Medical School: Indiana University School of Medicine
Why I chose IU for residency: During my third and fourth years of medical school I spent an extensive amount of time working with pathology residents and faculty at IU, and I noticed that on top of being knowledgeable and helpful, everybody here was happy. Faculty genuinely care about the well-being of their residents and are always available to talk and take feedback into account. I was further drawn to IU by the emphasis here on teaching, whether it be driven by attendings during case sign-out or QC conferences, or by residents themselves working directly with medical students. On top of all this, IU has a top-notch facility, a massive volume of cases, and a multitude of fellowships.
Personal Interests: I enjoy birding, running, reading, board games, video games, and spending time with friends and family.
Medical School: Army Medical College, National University of Sciences and Technology
Why I chose IU: IU easily ticked off all the boxes in my criteria for an ideal residency program. The solid curriculum, adequate program size, large volume and diversity of cases (being the primary Pathology residency program in Indiana), teaching and learning opportunities, adequate elective rotations, and the myriad opportunities for fellowships are only some of the factors that pulled me in. Above all, what really stood out for me were the extremely amiable and friendly people who I met during my interview, be it the faculty members, the residents, or the program coordinators: everyone was so kind and welcoming that I instantly knew I would feel at home in this program!
Personal interests: I enjoy making bad puns, listening to music, song-editing, birdwatching, and (casual) PC gaming.
Academic Interests: I am keeping an open mind, but fields that I find particularly interesting include Hematopathology and Medical Kidney.
Reem Youssef, MD
Medical School: Faculty of Medicine Zagazig University
Why I chose IU for residency: I applied to the IU pathology program because it has everything that I am looking for in a residency program. Besides the strong recommendations, I have received from a previous fellow and the current residents, IU has excellent case volume, diversity, faculty expertise, different work settings, and multiple in-house fellowships. The people are extremely friendly and helpful. Also, there are ample opportunities to gain additional experience in teaching since IU is the largest medical school in the US. All these factors made my decision very easy to choose the IU pathology program to help me attain my goal of becoming an excellent pathologist.
After matching, I was impressed even more with the flexibility and support, I have received from the program. Everyone is helpful, which made me confident that I made the right decision. Indianapolis is a nice place to live with lots of activities and restaurants to visit.
Personal Interests: Travelling, watching movies, spending time with family and friends
Academic Interests: Dermatopathology.
Mohamed Bikhet, MBBCh
Medical School: Faculty of Medicine Cairo University
Why I chose IU for residency: I applied to IU because it has a strong reputation with an impressive diversity of cases and knowledgeable faculty. I had an outstanding interview experience with the IU pathology faculty; I perceived an overwhelmingly friendly environment which made me confident that IU would be the perfect place to train and thrive. On the academic level, IU health has six hospitals operating under the same roof, offering a large volume of surgical cases, plenty of strong in-house fellowships, and the opportunity to train in both academic and community settings, ensuring that all trainees are well-rounded and strong pathologist. There is no doubt that any aspiring pathologist will be looking for such a setting to train. The program is well structured that all residents get high-yield and exceptional training while keeping wellness and life balance. I feel very satisfied choosing IU pathology, and I feel fortunate to have matched here.
Personal Interests: Photography is my favorite hobby, especially astrophotography, stargazing, and cosmology. I also enjoy watching anime, playing tennis, and video games
Academic Interests: I have not decided on subspecialty.
Guohua Liang, MB, PhD
Medical School: Yanbian University Health Science Center
Why I chose IU: IU was the best choice for me because I wanted to train at a medium-sized residency program with a solid curriculum (i.e., strong in both AP and CP training). As the only pathology residency training program in Indiana, I believe IU can provide not only a large volume, but also a variety of cases. In addition, during the interview, I had a strong feeling that the faculty truly take care of trainees. For instance, even though I was just one of the hundreds of applicants, the interviewers took the time to give me useful suggestions about future career development. When I submitted the rank order list, I also considered my family. Many suburbs around Indianapolis are nationally top-ranked as family-friendly cities (for example: safe, good public-school system and relatively low living cost).
Personal interests: I love cooking (Korean and Chinese cuisine) and I enjoy inline skating.
Medical School: Shiraz University of Medical Sciences
Why I chose IU for residency? IU is one of the most reputable academic medical centers with a robust pathology program. It offers everything that I was looking for in a residency program. An integrated AP/CP curriculum, large volume and diversity of specimens, excellent faculty in diverse subspecialty areas, and a well-organized department were among the key factors why I chose IU. The friendly and collegial environment in this department is proof that this department values resident wellness as well as education.
As a pathology resident, I will work at different hospitals that provide diagnostic services to much of Indiana. This experience will expose me to a wide range of specimens and broaden my knowledge and skills.
Personal interests: My favorite hobbies are hiking, travelling, photography and painting. I also enjoy spending time with my family and friends and attending concerts, sports and social events.
Medical School: University of Louisville School of Medicine
Why I chose IU: In a year where student exposure to residency programs was entirely virtual, IU really went the extra mile to highlight the impressive quality of their facilities, program, and staff. I was fortunate to work with several pathologists who had ties to IU during medical school, and I was confident that I would receive excellent training that would prepare me to be a great pathologist. IU also provides diverse fellowship opportunities, and the cost of living in Indianapolis is very affordable, which made it an easy choice to rank as my top program.
Current positions: Resident Curriculum Committee
Personal Interests: Tabletop games, painting miniatures, fantasy football, and game nights with friends
Academic Interests: Surgical Pathology and Transfusion Medicine
Muhammad Shaheen, MBBCh
Medical School: Alexandria University Faculty of Medicine.
Why I chose IU for Residency: It all goes back to the observership that I was lucky enough to get right before the COVID pandemic. The program had been recommended by a previous fellow as one of the top programs in pathology, and he was right about it. People here work very hard and have fun at the same time. The great jump in knowledge and skills of residents going from PGY1 to PGY4 is a testimony to the strength of the program. I learned a lot just by listening to the case presentations at the 4 pm daily surgical pathology QC conference. There is also ample opportunity for research. The residents are all very motivated and very well equipped with a wide range of resources to help them reach the expected level of competency. I knew during my observership that If I had a dream of becoming a good pathologist one day, IU was going to support me by all means. That is why I chose IU.
Personal interests: Languages and foreign cultures, books, cooking, and of course, cats.
Academic interests: Soft tissue pathology, cytopathology, and possibly GU pathology.
Asma Abu-Salah, MBBS
Why I chose IU for Residency:I chose IU pathology because our program meets all my ambitious criteria. The structure of the program with alternating AP and CP rotations keeps residents engaged in both disciplines throughout the years. The training in various settings including academic, community, and veteran hospitals, provides a better understanding of and helps in determining future job preferences. IU pathology’s department has a large diverse volume of cases. The department also provides a wide variety of fellowship disciplines. A unique aspect is our daily quality control (QC) conference, which is run by two respected senior attendings in the department. Residents receive daily exposure and teaching on interesting and difficult cases across the various surgical subspecialties during the QC conference. Didactics are well structured. All staff members and resident colleagues throughout the program are friendly, approachable, and willing to help. Lastly, I found the city of Indianapolis fabulous, and it feels like a second home for me.
Personal Interests: I enjoy traveling and photography.
Academic Interests: Genitourinary pathology
Fellowship plans: Genitourinary at IU, 2024-2025
Adeyinka Akinsanya, MBBS
Medical School: University of Ilorin College of Health Sciences
Current positions: CAP Resident Forum Delegate, ASCP Pathology Ambassador, IUSM Curriculum Steering Committee member, Association of Pathology Chairs GME Committee member.
Why I chose IU for residency: My interest in IU started during my one-month observership here. The environment was amicable, with a great rapport between the residents and attendings, who were all helpful and willing to teach. In addition, the excellent volume of surgical cases, strong in-house fellowships, and the opportunity to train in multiple settings (University, Community hospital, VA hospital, etc.) meant that IU was an excellent fit for me. As a resident, IU has provided me with many opportunities to pursue my passion for undergraduate and graduate medical education. Between the medical school and residency program, there are ample opportunities to develop as an educator, with willing mentors to guide and support you. Finally, the icing on the cake is the beautiful city of Indianapolis with its diverse, multicultural community, great food, fun indoor and outdoor activities, and reasonable cost of living.
Personal Interests: I enjoy watching anime, sports (soccer, tennis & Formula 1, to mention a few), reading fantasy novels, blogging, taking long walks, and looking at pathology cases on Twitter.
Academic Interests: Cytopathology, Gastrointestinal Pathology, and Teaching.
Fellowship plans: Cytopathology at IU, 2024-2025
Ahmad Alkashash, MBBCh
Medical School: Faculty of Medicine Cairo University
Why I chose IU for residency: I am truly fortunate to be doing my training at IU! From the first early moment I arrived in this department, I realized that it stands out and possesses all the qualities that I was searching for in a pathology residency program. I perceived a friendly environment, approachable faculty, and organized support staff. It was also very clear that this program is resident-centered rather than reputation-centered, and it is one of the few programs that has excellent training and a healthy working environment for its trainees. The program is designed to ensure residents secure competitive fellowship positions and jobs in both private practice and academic settings. I admired that the program offers sign-out experience in both sub-specialty and general pathology environments. In addition to the availability of in-house fellowships in ten sub-specialties, the program has a surgical case volume that exceeds 100,000, which makes the learning experience at IU challenging, but highly rewarding. I have no doubt that training at IU will allow me to thrive both professionally and personally. I am so excited and honored to be here and I look forward to what lies ahead over the next four years. Besides, Indianapolis has an amazing downtown, a very affordable cost of living, and amazing outdoors.
Personal Interests: I enjoy Calligraphy, reading and cooking.
Academic Interests: Gastrointestinal pathology
Fellowship plans: Gastrointestinal pathology fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital, 2024-2025
Yukiko Kitagawa, MD, PhD
Medical School: Tokyo Women’s Medical University
Why I chose IU for residency: When I started working as a visiting scholar in the IU Pathology Department, the residents, fellows and faculties welcomed me and supported my career pathway. Given my favorable experiences in this department as a scholar, I was confident that this is the best place for me to achieve my goals during residency. Also, Indiana is my home away from home, and I am very happy to work and live here.
Personal Interests: I enjoy singing as a cantor in English, Spanish and Japanese, and studying Japanese-styled flower arrangement.
Fellowship plans: Hematopathology (2024-25) - National Institutes of Health / National Cancer Institute.
Jessica Muldoon, MD
Current positions:CAP Resident Forum Delegate
Why I chose IU for Residency: Four years can seem like a lot of time, but looking back on medical school I realized that four years will fly by in the blink of an eye. Therefore when looking at residency programs I wanted to find somewhere where I would be able to fully utilize my time and have a supportive staff and resident cohort to grow and learn with. At IU, we have not only an impressive case volume with a mix of the ordinary and extraordinary, but also faculty members with open doors. Our faculty enjoy sharing their knowledge and taking the time to teach, as do our senior residents. We have a wonderful resident group of friendly and outgoing individuals. We also have a unique daily learning conference where interesting cases are shown to allow all residents the opportunity to see cases with our senior pathologists. Having this beautiful building and resident workroom doesn't hurt either!
Personal Interests: Taking my dogs to the park, going to concerts, adventuring with my co-residents, crafting, and home improvement projects.
Current positions: CAP Resident Forum Delegate, IUSM House Staff Forum Chair, Graduate Medical Education Committee Executive Board Member, IUSM Dean's Committee Representative, IU Pathology Social Chair.
Academic Interests: Teaching and advocacy.
Fellowship plans: Transfusion Medicine (2024-2025) at Indiana University School of Medicine
Ani Toklu, MD
Medical School: Istanbul University, Istanbul Faculty of Medicine
Why I chose IU for residency: I was impressed by the IU Pathology residency program even before my interview day. The academic strength of the department, the outstanding faculty, the size of the program, and the variety, complexity and large number of cases that are received here are some of the countless qualities that this program offers. I chose IU to pursue my residency training because I thought that if I were to design a pathology residency program, it would be very similar to this program.
Personal Interests: I like traveling around the world, sketching and painting, architecture and home decoration, cooking Turkish cuisine
Why I chose IU for Residency: I chose IU because of the collaborative and supportive environment, in addition to the great educators and role models here who want you to succeed. IU is a unique academic healthcare system that provides care for the entire state and cares for diverse patient populations, including working at the VA, Eskenazi and Riley hospitals. This enables residents to see a wide variety of cases.
Personal interests: I enjoy spending time outdoors, trying new restaurants, reading and staying physically active.
Academic interests: My specific interested include Dermatopathology and Surgical Pathology.
Quinn Miller, MD
Medical School: Ohio State University College of Medicine
Current positions: Associate Executive and CP Scheduling Chief
Why I chose IU for Residency: I was initially drawn to the IU Pathology program after my overwhelmingly positive interview experience. The faculty and staff were welcoming and the residents were friendly and demonstrated how collaborative the program was. Other factors that drew me in include the surgical case volume, the number of in-house fellowships offered, and the academic strength of the program as a whole.
Personal Interests: I enjoy playing piano and guitar, hiking, running, playing tennis, video games, traveling and snorkeling.
Academic Interests: I have not decided on subspecialty.
Fellowship plans:Gastrointestinal Pathology (2023-2024) – University of San Diego
Bianca Puello Yocum, MD
Medical School: Ross University
Current positions: Wellness Chief
Why I chose IU for residency: I chose the IU Pathology residency program because it checked off every box that I had when visiting residency programs. Things that were important to me included the overall atmosphere of the program, ability to prepare residents for future practice, and geographic location. Being a part of this residency program, I feel as if I am part of a family. There is a comradery between the residents, as well as with residents and attendings, which was very apparent on my interview day. IU also caters to individual needs. They are known for molding the program to meet the needs of individual resident’s specific interests. They also are an established residency program that is well-known and is able to place residents in competitive fellowships. Indianapolis is a great place to live that combines the ease of small town living with all of the perks of a big city.
Personal Interests: As a former competitive gymnast, I enjoy keeping up with the latest news in the gymnastics world. I also enjoy exercising and spending time with my family.
Academic Interests: I enjoy working with medical students and mentoring incoming residents.
Fellowship Plans:Cytopathology (2023-2024) - Indiana University
Ahmet Surucu, MD
Medical School:Marmara University School of Medicine
Current positions: SP Scheduling Chief
Why I chose IU for residency:IU Pathology is a residency program with systemic and very good quality of education, variety of academic opportunities, as well as a sincere and friendly environment. The attendings are highly qualified and very supportive which makes IU Pathology an excellent place to train.
Personnel Interests: I enjoy fishing, biking, gardening, playing soccer, video games and repairing electronic devices.
Academic Interests: GU pathology, GI pathology and Cytopathology
Fellowship Plans:Surgical Pathology (2023-2024) - Indiana University
Andrew Tharp, MD
Medical School: Indiana University
Current positions: Chief Resident
Why I chose IU for residency: Of all the places I interviewed, I genuinely believe that IU offered the most well rounded experience. This is the only major academic institution in the state. With that large catchment area comes a large volume of cases, which is very conducive to learning. The medical campus in Indianapolis is huge, consisting of four large general hospitals and one children’s hospital, offering a wide range of opportunities and experiences.
Personal Interests: Outside of work I spend a lot of my time with friends and family. I also enjoy rock climbing, hiking, swimming, working with computers, and running.
Academic Interests: I am currently enrolled in a medical management curriculum offered through IU Kelly School of Business, which I plan to complete this summer (2022). Following residency, I will complete one year of cytology fellowship, also at IU.
Fellowship plans: Cytopathology (2023-2024) - Indiana University