March 16, 2006
It's that time of year again for some medical students at the University of Virginia. Thursday was 'Match Day' for the medical class of 2006. The feeling of stress was no match for the feeling of excitement.
"I'm so excited [because] I'm going to Chapel Hill where I went to undergrad. Go Tarheels! It's awesome," said Kristie Tropea, a medical student at the University of Virginia.
"It's exciting; everybody is just running around, and I'm very excited," said Matt Huffman, another medical student at the University of Virginia. ."
"Yeah. I'm really excited about it," said Tonya Russell, another medical student at the University of Virginia.
You would be excited too if you spent several years studying medicine, taking test after test, and traveling thousands of miles to interview at a hospital to further your training. The day known as 'Match Day' is one the medical students will never forget.
"It's just like four years of work, just all in one day, it's just so exciting," added Tropea.
'Match Day' is when graduating students get their assignments for medical residency. The day transforms the young men and women into doctors. Getting there was not easy. The process involved lots of hospital interviews and academic competition.
"I interviewed at about 13, and ranked about 12," explained Huffman.
That was the hard part. On 'Match Day 2006', everything changed with one envelope. Every student heard their name called, got their envelope, opened it, and found out where they would end up as a resident. Each student opened the envelopes at once, which added to the excitement.
"I'm staying here [at the University of Virginia], doing Internal Medicine," said Huffman.
"I'm going to the Medical College of Virginia, Pediatrics Residency," added Russell.
There were almost 150 students getting their assignments today, and only 18 of them will remain at the University of Virginia. Over half will practice primary care medicine, which includes internal medicine, family care, and pediatrics.