Matches Made in Heaven: Elation as SKMC Students Celebrate Match Day 2023
On March 17, 274 Sidney Kimmel Medical College students donned T-shirts announcing “The Gang Matches to Residency”—a nod to the comedy “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”—and eagerly waited to receive the white envelopes that held the fate of their next three years, and beyond.
Match Day at Jefferson—and across the country—marked the culmination of four years of medical school, and the beginning of the next leg of an important journey for the freshly-minted doctors. At noon, they found out where they would be continuing their training as residents.
During the morning ceremonies in the Connelly Auditorium of the Dorrance H. Hamilton Building, Charles Pohl, MD, Vice Provost for Student Affairs at Sidney Kimmel Medical College, congratulated the students for rising to the occasion during an unprecedented challenge—attending medical school in the middle of a global pandemic.
“You, the Class of 2023, will be forever etched in our minds,” Pohl said. “As expected, you have shown incredible resolve and spirit, and exceeded all expectations—not skipping a beat and continuing to have a huge impact our patients, our community, and all of us.”
He noted that each student was one of 42,952 applicants applying to 37,425 first-year post graduate positions in 5,487 specialty programs across the country.
“You are truly a special class, and are adding MD to your name a time when the world is looking to you for safety and comfort,” Pohl told the students. He then invited them to raise a glass of champagne to toast and celebrate their great achievement as the Match Envelopes were distributed.
The students rushed into the lobby and spilled out onto the Sidney and Ethal Lubert Plaza to gather with family and friends and open the letters of acceptance. Cries of joy—as well as tears of joy—flowed freely as the students saw their dreams come true.
Amy He was so nervous she said almost didn’t open the envelope. But when she did, the Toronto native was overjoyed that she matched with Boston Medical Center in family medicine.
“Family medicine is the perfect combination of everything I love about medicine,” He says. “I love that patient connection; I want to be part of their lives.”
Lucia Sanchez and John Miller had a double dose of nerves. The two were not only hoping for a couples match, but also to remain at Jefferson for their residency.
“I was so nervous my hands were shaking,” said Sanchez.
But when the envelopes were opened, the pair got their wish. Sanchez was staying at Jefferson in diagnostic radiology, and Miller was accepted into the hospital’s dermatology program.
Miller’s father, Jeff Miller, MD, was particularly proud of his son, as he would be following in his own footsteps. Miller is a Jefferson Medical College, now Sidney Kimmel Medical College, graduate—class of 1993—and a dermatologist.
Out of the 274 Jefferson students, 262 participated in the National Resident Matching Program. Two did not participate because of a commitment to one of the Armed Services, and 10 matched early in ophthalmology and urology programs.
Although the students’ acceptance letters came from institutions across the country, 86 matched at programs in Pennsylvania with 59 matching to Thomas Jefferson University Hospital or one of its affiliates. The specialties receiving the highest number of matches were Internal Medicine, Anesthesia, and Family Medicine.
“This class is particularly amazing because they had this little thing called a pandemic that started their first year,” said Mark L. Tykocinski, MD, President of Thomas Jefferson University and the Anthony F. and Gertrude M. DePalma Dean of the medical college. “This class was unbelievably resilient; they weathered it all—and thrived. Now they’re going to some of the best programs in the country. We’re just unbelievably proud of them.”