Surgery Residents Candid Profiles

  PGY 5 (Chief Year)


Dr. Callie Dowdy

Callie Dowdy, MD
Hometown: Murray, KY
Undergrad: University of Richmond
Medical School: University of Kentucky
Areas of Interest/Research: Surgical Education, Bioengineering and med/surg device development. 
Why UK?: I observed first-hand the high skill level of UK-trained surgeons while in medical school. UK prepares its residents well. The surgical faculty and residents care for their patients and support one another.

Dr. Danielle Kay

Danielle Kay, MD
Hometown: New Orleans, LA
Undergrad: UCLA
Medical School: Tulane
Why UK?: I was impressed that residents graduating from UK had their choice of match in competitive fellowships nationally or could go on to a professional practice straight out of residency. UK residents support one another and we have fun inside and outside of the hospital.

Dr-John-Hahn


John Hahn, MD
Hometown: Los Angeles, California
Undergrad: University of West Florida
Medical School: Florida State
Areas of Interest/Research: General Surgery, Minimally Invasive Surgery, Foregut Surgery
Why UK?: I chose UK for three reasons: the residents, the acuity, and the volume of cases.


Dr. Jahan Miremami
Jahan Miremami, MD
Hometown: Somerset, KY
Undergrad: University of Kentucky
Medical School: University of Kentucky College of Medicine
Areas of Interest/Research: Minimally invasive surgical techniques. 
Why UK?: At the end of five years, UK will have given me surgical training that will enable me to go into the Commonwealth and provide exceptional care to my patients.

Dr-Gustavo-Huerta

Gustavo Huerta, MD
Hometown: Dickson, Tennessee
Undergrad:
Rhodes College
Medical School:
 University of Kentucky

Dr. Shyanie Kumar
Shyanie Kumar, MD
Hometown: Coppell, TX 
Undergrad: Texas A&M, Fightin' Aggie Class of 2010
Medical School: Texas A&M University
Why UK?: I wanted a program where my fellow residents would be family and I would receive strong, well-rounded training. During an away rotation at UK, I knew this program would be a good fit for me. UK was my top choice and I'm glad to be here.

Dr. Patrick Liebel


Patrick Liebel, MD

Hometown: Idaho Falls, ID
Undergrad: Utah State University
Medical School: University of Utah School of Medicine

  PGY 4

Dr. Heather Frohman-Sinner

Heather Frohman-Sinner, MD
Hometown: Baltimore, MD
Undergrad:
Davidson College
Medical School:
University of South Florida
Areas of Interest/Research:
Hepatobiliary, Surgical Oncology
Why UK?: 
It is rare to train at a program where residents and faculty care for one another like family. UK graduates surgeons who can confidently operate on the most complex cases, while simultaneously providing a supportive environment for residents. I feel lucky to be training at UK.

Kyle Bess, MD
Kyle Bess, MD
Hometown: Dothan, Alabama
Undergrad: Brigham Young University
Medical School: University of Alabama - Birmingham

Dr. Wayne Chang
Wayne Chang, MD
Hometown: Ellicott City, MD
Undergrad: University of Maryland, Baltimore County
Medical School: Virginia Tech Carilion
Areas of Interest/Research: Surgical Education, Minimally Invasive Surgery, Patient Outcomes.
Why UK?: I had a good feeling about the UK surgery residency after I interviewed. My subsequent interactions with the residents and administration confirmed my initial impressions. The faculty are top-notch and they give the right amount of guidance and autonomy that a surgical resident seeks.

Brent Hillard, MD
Brent Hillard, MD
Hometown: Elizabethtown, Kentucky
Undergrad: University of Louisville
Medical School: University of Kentucky

Nick Jackson, MD
Nick Jackson, MD
Hometown: Louisville, KY
Undergrad: University of Kentucky 
Medical School: University of Kentucky
Area of Interest/Research: Colorectal Surgery
Why UK?:I knew the high quality of training at UK since I was a student here. I also love the city of Lexington.

Dr. Tong Gan
Tong Gan, MD
Hometown: 
Dublin, Ohio and Shijazhaung, China
Undergrad: 
The Ohio State University
Medical School: 
The Ohio State University
Areas of Interest/Research: 
Surgical Oncology. 
Why UK? 
Every year, UK chief residents leave the program adept enough to begin a professional surgical practice. They are excellent decision makers.

Dr. Heath Brashear

Heath Brashear, DO
Hometown: Viper, Kentucky
Undergrad: Pikeville College
Medical School: Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine
Area of Interest/Research: General Surgery

  PGY 3

Roberto Aru, MD

Roberto Aru, MD
Hometown(s): Ridgeland, MS and Cagliari, Italy
Undergrad: Furman University
Medical School: University of Mississippi School of Medicine
Areas of Interest/Research: Endocrine and Colorectal Surgery
Why UK?: An environment that takes resident education seriously is important to me. The caliber of the General Surgery training, the people, and the leadership are what make University of Kentucky's General Surgery program great. Residents graduate from Kentucky well trained and able to go in any direction with their surgical careers. I am thrilled to be a part of this program.

Meg Harper, MD

Meg Harper, MD
Hometown: Vista, California
Undergrad:University of California, San Diego
Medical School:University of Cincinnati

Travis Hughes, MD

Travis Hughes, MD
Hometown(s): Houston, TX
Undergrad: The University of Texas at Austin
Medical School: UT Houston McGovern Medical School 
Areas of Interest/Research: Colorectal Surgery, Minimally Invasive Surgery.  
Outside of Surgery: Soccer, Reading, Programming
Why UK?: UK is a high volume program with challenging pathology and a fantastic training culture.

Katie Kraft, MD

Katie Kraft, MD
Hometown(s): Modesto, CA
Undergrad: University of Notre Dame
Medical School: University of Kentucky College of Medicine 
Areas of Interest/Research: Trauma, Acute care surgery, Surgical education.
Why UK?: I knew I wanted to stay at UK after attending medical school here.  I love the family atmosphere and the work ethic. There is no better place for surgical training and I am ecstatic to have matched at my first choice program, UK.

Amy Tefft, MD

Amy Tefft, MD
Hometown(s): Northfield, VT
Undergrad: University of California - San Diego
Medical School: University of Vermont
Areas of Interest/Research: Rural General Surgery / Public Health.  
Why UK?: It was obvious from my interview that residents at UK receive excellent training and are a great group of people. UK gives me the choice to pursue a competitive fellowship or enter career in general surgery right after residency, UK seemed like the perfect fit.

Sam Walling, MD
Sam Walling, MD
Hometown(s): Louisville, KY
Undergrad: Vanderbilt University
Medical School: University of Louisville
Areas of Interest/Research: Healthcare disparities and health services research.
Why UK?: When I interviewed at UK, I was impressed with the well-roundedness of the training program and the camaraderie among the residents. I knew I could become the physician I aspire to be by training in Lexington.

Jingkun Wang, MD
Jingkun Wang, MD
Hometown: Wuhan, China
Undergrad: University of Kentucky
Medical School: University of Kentucky
Why UK?: UK has a track record of matching their residents into amazing fellowships. The residents get the volume and autonomy to prepare them to go straight into practice. After sitting in on many M&M's and conferences on the interview trail, I found UK residents the most qualified.

PGY 2

Erika Almodovar, MD
Erika Almodovar, MD
Hometown(s): Sugar Land, TX
Undergrad: University of Texas at Austin
Medical School: Ross University
Interests outside of UK : Exploring Lexington restaurants and bars, hiking Raven Run, babysitting Quinn Tefft.
Why UK?: The patients, my co-residents, the faculty - UK is incredible! I realized that training at UK would turn me into a strong and competent general surgeon with the ability to pursue a competitive fellowship. It is a place that I'm proud to call home.

Dr. Robert Bautista

Robert-Marlo Bautista, MD, MS
Hometown: Los Angeles, California
Undergrad: University of Southern California
Medical School: Ross University
Areas of Interest/Research: Pediatric Surgery 
Why UK? Approachable attendings and a strong emphasis on learning. A high case load and strong camaraderie.

Jennifer Castle, MD
Jennifer Castle, MD
Hometown(s): Pickerington, OH
Undergrad: Northern Kentucky University
Medical School: University of Kentucky
Interests Outside of UK: Hiking, camping, fishing ... basically anything outdoors. Craft beers, New adventures.  
Why UK?: It was with this program - the residents and faculty - that I fell in love with surgery. Treating this patient population prepares residents to be competent surgeons. As for Lexington, it is the perfect size. There are plenty of activities for the family to do and enjoy. The city is also within a short drive to multiple hiking locations that present a variety of challenges. I've loved this place for the past four years and look forward to many more.

Michael Cournoyer, MD

Michael Cournoyer, MD
Hometown(s): Indianapolis, IN
Undergrad: Indiana University
Medical School: Indiana University

Reba Hodge, MD

Reba Hodge, MD
Hometown(s): Burnside, KY
Undergrad: University of Louisville
Medical School: University of Louisville
Areas of Interest/Research: General Surgery / Trauma Surgery and Critical Care.  
Why UK?: I chose UK because it will allow me to serve the patient population I grew up in, and care so much for.  Lexington is also a booming, young city, and not a single person I have spoken to had anything but praises to sing for the city of Lexington, as well as the program at UK.

Dr. Charles Campbell
Charles Campbell, DO
Hometown(s): Winchester, KY
Undergrad: University of Kentucky
Medical School: Pikeville College School of Medicine
Areas of Interest/Research: General Surgery

Tori Wagner, MD

Victoria "Tori" Wagner, MD
Hometown(s): The Woodlands, TX
Undergrad: Texas A&M University
Medical School: Texas A&M Health Science Center
Areas of Interest/Research: Colorectal and MIS/Bariatric Surgery.  
Why UK?: I loved the camaraderie between residents and faculty.

CATEGORICAL INTERNS

Alexandra Cocca
Alexandra Cocca, MD

Hometown: Johns Creek, Georgia
Undergrad: Clemson University
Medical School: Medical University of South Carolina
Areas of Interest/Research: Trauma Surgery, Colorectal Surgery
Outside of Surgery: Hiking, Running, Traveling, Kayaking
Why UK?: I was looking for a program that trained well-rounded surgeons and also invested in the personal development of their residents. It was clear at the dinner and interview that the residents and faculty were a family. They supported one another through the ups and downs of residency and life. I knew UK was the perfect fit and I'm very grateful to be part of the UK family.

Satya Dalavayi, MD
Satya "Sai" Dalavayi, MD

Hometown: Novi, Michigan
Undergrad: Wayne State University
Medical School: Western Michigan University
Areas of Interest/Research: General Surgery
Outside of Surgery: Learning about technology, television and movies, exercising

Brittany Levy, MD
Hometown: Cleveland, Ohio
Undergrad: Indiana University
Medical School: University of Cincinnati
Areas of Interest/Research: General Surgery
Outside of Surgery: Knitting, crochet, yoga, and lacrosse.

Hannah McDonald, MD
Hannah McDonald, MD

Hometown: Longview, Texas
Undergrad: The University of Texas at Austin
Medical School: UT Houston McGovern Medical School
Areas of Interest/Research: Surgical Oncology
Outside of Surgery: Running, hiking, reading, going to the arboretum with my husband and our dogs.
Why UK?: I was drawn to UK's high volume of very sick patients, extensive operative experience, welcoming atmosphere, and attractive research in surgical oncology.

Kyle Murphy, MD
Kyle Murphy, MD

Hometown: Casper, Wyoming
Undergrad: University of Notre Dame
Medical School: University of Kentucky
Areas of Interest/Research: General Surgery
Why UK?: As a medical student, I enjoyed working with the residents and faculty at UK, and it was clear that the level of training was excellent. In addition, Lexington is a great place to live.

Gustavo Ortega, MD casual

Gustavo Ortega, MD

Hometown: Miami, Florida
Undergrad: Florida International University
Medical School: Virginia Commonwealth University
Areas of Interest/Research: General Surgery
Outside of Surgery: Weightlifting, gaming, Baltimore Ravens and Miami Hurricanes football, spending time with my fiance and our pup, Hooch.
Why UK?: UK, with its high volume and unique pathology, provides a unique learning environment that I thought would be conducive to shaping successful surgeons. After completing an externship at the University of Kentucky, I was impressed by the level of surgical and clinical competency of the residents and teaching staff. Frankly, I loved being a part of this program as a student, and could not be more excited to join the team.

Wesley Wilt, MD
Wesley Wilt, MD

Hometown: Lexington, Kentucky
Undergrad: Wake Forest University
Medical School: University of Kentucky
Areas of Interest/Research: General Surgery
Outside of Surgery: Hiking, crossfit, playing with my dog, and finding the best food in Lexington
Why UK?: UK residency provides high volume, patients presenting multiple pathologies, and plenty of OR experience. At the end of five years, residents are well prepared for any fellowship or professional practice. After interviewing around the country, I was unable to find a supportive training environment the equal of what UK provides. Additionally, Lexington is incredible. It has much of what most big cities offer with outdoor activities nearby (and much less traffic!)

Research year

Vashisht Madabhushi, MD
Vashisht Madabhushi, MD

Hometown: San Jose, California
Undergrad:
University of California, San Diego
Medical School:
Ross University

Zeta Chow, MDZeta Chow, MD
Hometown(s): Denver, CO
Undergrad: University of Wisconsin Madison
Medical School: University of Colorado-School of Medicine 
Areas of Interest/Research: Surgical Oncology, Colorectal, Plastics.
Why UK?:Reflecting back to my interview day, I was impressed with how much the interviewers knew about me before our meeting. The opportunity of pursuing an academic career is great here at UK and they have a track record of matching residents into top fellowship programs. I am happy and proud to be a Wildcat. Go Cats!

 Dr. Rob King
Rob King, MD
Hometown: Los Angeles, California
Undergrad: University of San Diego
Medical School: Ross University
Why UK?: I wouldn't want to complete a residency program if the difficulty was set on 'easy'. UK has an amazing group of residents and faculty, a diverse patient population, and some of the most complex pathologies in the country.



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