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First Aid for Third Year Clerkships at JMC

General Surgery Clerkship at Christiana


How did you get there? What is the IDEAL way to get there (if different)? If you took public transportation how much did it cost?
  • Driving is really the only option. Have a car yourself or carpool with another student.


If you lived away from campus, how was the housing?
  • They put you in up in the Fairfield Inn close to the hospital. Some people had roommates, some did not. They only house you Monday-Thursday night, so you have to drive in on Monday morning. If you do not have a car, you are basically trapped at the hotel as nothing is really walkable.
Food: Was it paid for? Were there free lunches? Did you get meal vouchers when you were on-call?
  • You get a meal card that is recharged at the beginning of every month that is supposed to be used when on call but many used it for all their meals. Card is worth about $60 and meals at the cafeteria were pretty cheap: $3-6.


How were the 6 weeks divided up?
  • You spend 3 weeks on one service and 3 weeks on another. Most people had 3 weeks of General Surgery and 3 weeks of something else like colorectal, trauma, surgical oncology, minimally invasive, vascular etc.
Are you able to request what you want?
  • Yes, you are able to request what "other" service you are on, but the slots fill up fast, email the program coordinator at the site early.


Did you have lectures/didactic sessions at your rotation site?
  • Student presentations every Friday which were meant to be educational and at our level. We also attended grand rounds, M and Ms, and other conferences with the residents.
Did you give a presentation? Were you required to do so?
  • Yes and at least 1 was required. The required presentation was 20-30 minutes on an assigned text book chapter. Sometimes the residents asked you to do short, informal 5 minute presentations about random topics.


What were your hours (roughly)?
  • 5 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Did you get off on major holidays, or were you expected to be there (i.e. Labor Day, Thanksgiving & Friday after Thanksgiving)? Weekends?
  • Holidays were given off. Refer to official clerkship guidelines.
What was the call schedule?
  • Call is ideally once per week (this was sometimes not possible when there were many students on the service and some students were only on call 2-3 times during the rotation). It is suggested that one call day be over a weekend.

    Call days were chosen when you got there.
In the Hospital, did you feel a part of the ‘team’? Did residents/attendings appreciate you?
  • Very team dependent. The teams change often, and this is really dependent on the residents and attendings you work with. As far as attendings you will feel better working with some and can try to get in on their cases.
How was the teaching by attendings?
  • It was ok, again, a lot depends on who you are with. A few will teach, a few will just pimp, and some will do nothing. Most teaching was through the residents.


  • Get there early, see as many patients as you can, work with the chief of the service you are on, this is the person that will be grading you.
  • Be on time, work hard the whole time you are at the hospital, do all consults that come up and help with whatever needs to be done.
  • Show that you are interested and do the work that is assigned to you.
  • Show up on time, read about the surgerys before you go into them. Share information with peers about what you were pimped on.
  • Know your patients and your cases Work hard Ask to help.


  • Meal card, call rooms, nice hospital, lots of good cases, nice interns, good residents.
  • Good residents and faculty. Great facilities!!! Friendly employees.
  • Overall, the residents were great.
  • Great people, lots of OR time, minimal scut work, good lectures, good resident teaching.
  • Good experience with mostly good people.
  • Lack of solid feedback.
  • No formal teaching rounds with faculty.
  • There are a LOT of students on the surgery rotation there (mostly from other schools).
  • Being on call is a bit disorganized, and the trauma is not as much as at Jeff.

Last revised: 01/12

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