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Stomach flutters, sweaty palms, sheer joy at Match Day

Medical students find out their destinations for residency training

by Kristina SauerweinMarch 20, 2017

Huy Mach

Greatly anticipated, Match Day finally arrived Friday for thousands of medical students nationwide, including 133 soon-to-be physicians at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Along with the event came stomach flutters, sweaty palms and sheer joy as students learned where they will train as medical residents after graduation.

“Match Day is the culmination of their hard work in medical school,” said Kathryn Diemer, MD, assistant dean for career counseling and an associate professor of medicine. She has been in charge of Match Day at Washington University since 2000.

Michael Worful
Top matches by specialty, Washington University School of Medicine. Click graphic to enlarge.

“For medical students, it’s one of the most momentous occasions in their lives,” Diemer said. “It’s like a wedding day. You’re about to walk down the aisle and you’re excited and amazed that the big day is finally here. I get choked up every year. I get butterflies.”

Friends and family cheered as students walked across the auditorium stage in the Eric P. Newman Education Center and unsealed envelopes that revealed the names of the institutions where they will begin their residency training in July.

Among Washington University’s multi-talented medical students, many will stay in St. Louis for residencies at Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals. Others matched at hospitals throughout the United States, including Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston; UCSF Medical Center in San Francisco; UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles; Cleveland Clinic; Mayo Clinic in Minnesota; Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago; Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia; and New York Presbyterian University Hospital and NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City.

Highlights of Washington University’s Match Day included:

  • Of the 133 medical students, 42 will train at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and five at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.
  • Besides Missouri, the most popular states School of Medicine students will train include: New York, 15; Massachusetts, 14; Pennsylvania, 14; California, 11 and Illinois, nine.
  • The largest group of students — 33 — will train in internal medicine, followed by 13 each in pediatrics and emergency medicine, nine each in radiology and obstetrics-gynecology, six each in anesthesiology and orthopaedic surgery, and five each in neurology and psychiatry.
  • Overall, the National Resident Matching Program recorded the largest match ever with more than 43,000 applicants registered and more than 31,000 positions offered.

Kristina covers pediatrics, surgery, medical education and student life. In 2020, she received a gold Robert G. Fenley Writing Award for general staff writing from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), and in 2019, she received the silver award. Kristina is an author and former reporter for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and the Los Angeles Times, where she was part of a team of journalists that won the Pulitzer Prize in 2004 for breaking news. Additionally, she covered the 2014 Ferguson unrest for TIME magazine and, for eight years, wrote a popular parenting column for

Huy uses visual storytelling in his coverage of medical education, patient care, and research. He was part of a team of photographers at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that won the Pulitzer Prize for breaking news photography in 2015. He has a bachelor's degree in photojournalism from Western Kentucky University.