Surgery

Visiting Students

Are you a visiting student? This program is open to non-PSU CoM students.

Find out more
Apply using VSAS

The Department of Surgery offers both third-year clerkships as well as fourth-year electives and acting internships. Elective information can be found at the bottom of this page. Find more information on otolaryngology surgical electives here.

Third-Year Clerkships

This eight-week surgery clerkship is a required clinical experience that introduces students to the basic principles of surgery and the basic principles of caring for the surgical patient.  It is not the purpose of the surgical clerkship to train medical students in the practice of surgery or to interest only those students who intend to pursue a career in surgery.  The clerkship is designed to equip students with the knowledge and skills relevant to surgical management that all physicians should possess.  Through this exposure, the student will begin to understand the general process of the application of surgical therapy to patients in a wide variety of stages.  Furthermore, by participating as a member of the surgical team, the student will observe the role of the surgeon as a member of the multidisciplinary team that provides care for the patient.  The clerkship is structured upon the principle that learning is an active process which can be accomplished only by the student.  The role of the faculty and house staff is to provide guidance, stimulation, and example.

The students will rotate on a General Surgery Service for four weeks.  During this experience, they will learn pre- and post-operative management, participate in surgical procedures, and gain exposure to the initial management of trauma patients.  Additionally, they will spend the other four weeks on specialty rotations, providing the student with a broad experience in the surgical disciplines.  Emphasis continues on the evaluation and diagnosis of surgical disease.  The students participate in a core conference series consisting of a series of lectures and case-based discussions.  Evaluation occurs through an end-of-course shelf exam, feedback from faculty and residents, and case presentations.

The clerkship emphasizes direct student participation in the care of patients.  Students will be expected to evaluate and follow inpatients and outpatients.  The student is considered to be part of the surgical team.  In addition, the student is expected to accept personal responsibility as a physician for the care of the patient, acting always under the supervision of the attending and resident surgical team.  In this role, the student should be versed in the knowledge applicable to the care of the patient, being particularly prepared to address issues of differential diagnosis, treatment alternatives and operative interventions.  Participation in daily rounds and chart notations are expected.  The student is also expected to attend relevant seminars and grand rounds as part of his/her clinical team.  In addition, students will prepare for and attend the student-specific activities.

Contact us

Dr. Brian Saunders
Director of Undergraduate Surgical Education
Director, Surgery Clerkship and Surgery Acting Internships
bsaunders@pennstatehealth.psu.edu

Lureye Myers

SURG 710 – General Surgery

Credits: 5 Credits

Course Director: Dr. Brian Saunders

Course Coordinator: Lureye Myers; lmyers1@pennstatehealth.psu.edu, 717-531-4451

Locations: Hershey, York (Dr. Ebondo Mpinga)

Specify Emphasis: General Surgery/Oncological Surgery or Trauma/Critical Care

Prerequisites: Third year medicine clerkship

Maximum Number of Students: 2 (Hershey) and 1 (York, prior approval)

When Offered: All Rotations

Length Of Course: 1 Month

Description: This course is designed to reinforce and expand the principles of General Surgery in the inpatient, outpatient, trauma bay and operating room settings. The 4th year medical student is expected to assume a much greater role in the care and assessment of patients, than occurred during the 3rd year Clerkship. It is anticipated that the 4th year medical student will essentially function as an intern. Emphasis is placed on clinical problem solving in the clinics, on the wards, in the Emergency Department and in the Surgical Critical Care unit. Indications, contraindications, morbidity and mortality associated with various frequently performed operative procedures are to be known by the 4th year medical student by the completion of the rotation. The 4th year medical student is also expected to even more familiar with the pertinent anatomy and the principles of the various operative procedures on which he/she scrubs. Emphasis is also given to teaching the appropriate way to present a patient to colleagues comprehensively and in an articulate and logical way.

SURG 711 – Cardiothoracic Surgery Acting Intership

Credits: 5 Credits

Course Director: Dr. David Campbell

Course Coordinator: Becky Horn; rhorn@pennstatehealth.psu.edu, 717-531-8329

Locations: Hershey, York (Dr. Ebondo Mpinga)

Prerequisites: Third year medicine clerkship

Maximum Number of Students: 1 (Hershey) and 1 (York, prior approval)

When Offered: All Rotations

Length Of Course: 1 Month

Report to: Chief Fellow for Hershey (call pager 3211 for instructions)

Description: Participate in the preoperative work-up, intraoperative procedures, and postoperative care of patients undergoing a wide variety of cardiothoracic operations. Special duty assignments are also available.

SURG 713 – Vascular Surgery Acting Intership

Credits: 5 Credits

Course Director: Dr. Robert Atnip

Course Coordinator: Lureye Myers; lmyers1@pennstatehealth.psu.edu, 717-531-4451

Locations: Hershey, York (Dr. Ebondo Mpinga)

Prerequisites: Third year medicine clerkship

Maximum Number of Students: 1 (Hershey) and 1 (York, prior approval)

When Offered: All Rotations

Length Of Course: 1 Month

Description: An acting internship designed to provide the student with an in-depth appreciation of all facets of vascular surgery.

A clinical experience designed to be an acting internship for one in the fourth year. Emphasis will include outpatient work as well as operating room experience. Clinical rounds, patient consultations, and division conferences are also included. Microsurgery practice and research laboratory work are encouraged. Each student will be helped to develop a manuscript for publication in a basic science or clinical journal.

SURG 714 – Transplant Surgery Acting Internship

Credits: 5 Credits

Course Director: Dr. Zakiyah Kadry

Course Coordinator: Lureye Myers; lmyers1@pennstatehealth.psu.edu, 717-531-4451

Locations: Hershey

Prerequisites: Third year medicine clerkship

Maximum Number of Students: 1

When Offered: All Rotations

Length Of Course: 1 Month

Description: An in-depth experience in the preoperative evaluation, intraoperative procedures, and postoperative management of kidney, liver, and pancreas transplant patients.

This course is designed to offer students an opportunity to be involved with the evaluation and management of patients on the transplant surgery service. It is designed to reinforce the principles of General Surgery which are learned in the third-year but with particular emphasis to the care of transplant patients. The 4th year medical student is expected to function as an intern. The 4th year student is also expected to become more
knowledgeable of the pertinent anatomy and physiology of the various transplant organs and participate in the operating room to a greater extent. Emphasis is also given to presentation skills and patient assessments. Finally, transplantation represents a field that combines many disciplines of medicine and allows a medical student to learn how to interact in this collaborative environment

SURG 725 – Plastic Surgery Acting Internship

Credits: 5 Credits

Course Director: Dr. John Ingraham

Course Coordinator: Tasha Cochran; tcochran@pennstatehealth.psu.edu717-531-8372

Locations: Hershey and York

Prerequisites: Third year core clerkships

Maximum Number of Students: 1 (Hershey) and 1 (York, prior approval required)

When Offered: All Rotations

Length Of Course: 1 Month

Description: A clinical experience designed to be an acting internship for one in the fourth year. Emphasis will include outpatient work as well as operating room experience. Clinical rounds, patient consultations, and division conferences are also included. Microsurgery practice and research laboratory work are encouraged. Each student will be helped to develop a manuscript for publication in a basic science or clinical journal.

SURG 722 – Hand Surgery Acting Internship

Credits: 5 Credits

Course Director: Dr. Randy Hauck

Course Coordinator: Tasha Cochran; tcochran@pennstatehealth.psu.edu717-531-8372

Location: Hershey

Prerequisites: Third year core clerkships

Maximum Number of Students: 1

When Offered: All Rotations

Length Of Course: 1 Month

Description: This acting internship is designed to give the students an opportunity to participate in the preoperative, operative, and postoperative care of patients with hand problems including congenital and acquired conditions that affect the hand and upper extremity.

SURG 740 – Urology Acting Internship

Credits: 5 Credits

Course Director: Dr. Ross Decter

Course Coordinator: Danielle Shreiner; dshreiner@pennstatehealth.psu.edu717-531-1131

Location: Hershey and York (Dr. Ebondo Mpinga)

Prerequisites: Third year core clerkships

Maximum Number of Students: 1 (Hershey) and 1 (York, requires prior approval)

When Offered: All Rotations

Length Of Course: 1 Month

Report to: In Hershey, Dr. Ross Decter

Date/Location/Time: 6:45 a.m., Urology Conference Room, C4832

Description: In-depth experience in evaluation and management of patients with adult and pediatric urologic problems. Specific concentration in pediatric urology, female urology, kidney and ureteral stones, oncology, or kidney stones is available. This fourth year acting internship is for the student who wishes a more intensive exposure to Urology. The time distribution is negotiable and a particular student interest in research or specific area of Urology can be accommodated.

SURG 741 – Surgical Intensive Care Unit Elective

Credits: 5 Credits

Course Director: Dr. Scott Armen

Course Coordinator: Beth Shultz; eschultz@pennstatehealth.psu.edu717-531-6718

Location: Hershey and York (Dr. Ebondo Mpinga)

Prerequisites: Third year core clerkships

Maximum Number of Students: 2 (Hershey) and 1 (York, requires prior approval)

When Offered: All Rotations

Length Of Course: 1 Month

Report to: In Hershey, ICU attending

Description: An Intensive Care Unit exposure to patients after surgery and trauma. Emphasis is placed on teaching the techniques of pulmonary, cardiovascular, neurological, nutritional, and pain management. Principles of physiology are emphasized, and students participate in decisions of management. Students will be evaluated by the SICU faculty based on their participation in rounds, knowledge of critical care medicine, contribution to looking up and sharing new knowledge required by the team, procedural skills, eagerness to learn, and involvement in social interactions with the family, etc. of their patients.