Meharry Medical College celebrates National Match Day

Meharry students hold their match result letters at Match Day (photo by Emanuel Roland).

On Friday, March 16, Meharry Medical College’s Class of 2018 medical students participated in Match Day – a heavily anticipated, nationwide event where students discover their futures as physicians. Match Day marks the moment in which the National Resident Matching Program® (NRMP®) reveals the location and focus of medical students’ post-graduate residencies. For Meharry, Match Day is a dramatic cause for celebration – highlighting the achievements and adversity overcome by each student as they learn their future surrounded by family, professors and peers.

At the event, classmates simultaneously opened envelopes revealing the institutions that selected them. This year’s class matched into acclaimed programs across the nation such as Baylor, Yale – New Haven Hospital, University of California – Davis, Stanford, Dartmouth and the Cleveland Clinic. This year was a break in tradition, as the event, which has traditionally been held in the lower level of the Kresge Learning Center, was held in the Cal Turner Family Center for Student Education Ballroom. Also, rather than going individually through the class in turn, for hours, the entire group opened their envelopes at the same time, precisely at 11:00 a.m., as did students at medical schools throughout the nation, at 12 Noon Eastern time, 11 am Central.

“Meharry continues to educate and train physician leaders who are eager to return to the community to serve,” said Meharry President and CEO James E. K. Hildreth, Ph.D., M.D. “We are proud of everyone who matched.

As part of the National Resident Matching Program® (NRMP®), each year, medical school students submit their top three choices for residency programs to the NRMP®, a nonprofit organization that facilitates the process of matching the prefer-ences of applicants to available U.S. residency positions. The students submitted applications to the NRMP® to find a position at a U.S. teaching hospital where they will undertake a period of specialized training which can last from three to seven years. The NRMP® uses a computerized mathematical algorithm, designed to produce a best result by aligning the preferences of applicants with the preferences of residency programs in order to fill the thousands of training positions available at U.S. teaching hospitals.

Meharry students and their freinds and families joined thousands of other medical students across the country for the nationwide event known as “Match Day.” This is when students learn where they will be trained as medical residents and truly learn how to be doctors, practicing real medicine in real-time, real-life situations for years. The day is an exciting and emotional one for the students and their familes, some of whom travel vast distances to be there with them on this very special day. Each student is given time to speak and introduce their loved ones, and share their experience and plans for the future, as they reveal their “match” to colleagues and supporters.

Meharry has a proud reputation of exceeding the national averages for students matched to primary care fields of internal medicine, pediatrics. According to a recent study by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), the United States is expected to face a shortage of up to 35,600 primary care physicians over the next decade. Meharry is on the frontlines to reverse this shortfall.

48% of the Meharry students who participated in this year’s program matched into primary care.

The MMC Students also matched into highly desirable specialty fields including radiation oncology, orthopedic surgery, anesthesiology, emergency medicine, neurology, radiology and pathology.

“Meharry students are competitive nationwide because of our rigorous academics combined with our nurturing environment that allows students to grow and develop as scholars, medical professionals and servant leaders,” said a School of Medicine official.

This year’s class matched into acclaimed programs across the nation including Baylor, Yale-New Haven Hospital, University of California – Davis, Stanford, Dartmouth, Cleveland Clinic, Mayo Clinic, Harvard, Wake Forest, Mount Sinai-New York, Tulane, University of Texas Southwestern and Meharry Medical College.

The 2018 Main Residency Match is the largest in NRMP® history. A record-high 37,103 applicants submitted program choices for 33,167 positions, the most ever offered in the Match. The number of available first-year (PGY-1) positions rose to 30,232, an increase of 1,383 over 2017. The number of Match registrants was the highest ever at 43,909.

The National Resident Matching Program® (NRMP®) is a private, non-profit organization established in 1952 at the request of medical students to provide an orderly and fair mechanism for matching the preferences of applicants for U.S. residency positions with the preferences of residency program directors. In addition to the annual Main Residency Match® for almost 44,000 registrants, the NRMP® conducts Fellowship Matches for more than 60 subspecialties through its Specialties Matching Service® (SMS®).