Memorial University of Newfoundland – General Surgery – St. John’s
Program Director

Dr. Alex Mathieson

Program Administrator

Stacy Hicks

Events Calendar

Program Details

Memorial University of Newfoundland – General Surgery – St. John’s

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Resident Experience

Cecily Stockley
PGY-4
– Small collegial program that fosters excellent working relationships between residents and staff.- Early hands-on experience in both the operating room and decision-making on the management of surgical inpatients.- Dedicated endoscopy program that produces independent endoscopists.- Six months of elective time to allow competitiveness for fellowships or time for those interested in community to try out different hospitals.- Formal mentorship program.- Weekly academic half-day and monthly journal club.- PGY-5 “chief year” – a year largely for operating with the goal to gain surgical independence.- Adaptable – General surgery was the first MUN program to declare a change in the policy for no-call for pregnant residents from 32 weeks to 28 weeks. The remaining MUN programs are now beginning to follow-suit.
-There exists a positive learning experience within our general surgery program that allows for a resident to learn how to grow into a well-educated and confident physician, and a technically-competent and safe surgeon. Concurrently, there exists an awareness that we are people with lives outside of medicine. Since it is a smaller program, we have regular check-ins with staff and an open environment where residents can discuss their career interests, life ambitions within and outside of medicine, and the flexibility within the program to help achieve those goals.
– It is collegial, adaptable and supportive. We have good working relationships among residents, staff, nurses, and other disciplines.
– When I am not at work I can almost definitely be found hiking with my partner, dog and friends around the city. St. John’s has a gorgeous rugged coastline with well-developed trails for all outdoor activities including hiking, mountain biking, snowshoeing and skiing. – When not mid-pandemic, I love taking time off for travelling (I got married and went on a honeymoon in PGY-2 – highly recommend!).
– Resident-to-resident – this is definitely not a “cut-throat” program. Our resident-type is people who are team-centered and do what they can to make the whole team thrive. I am beyond lucky to have met four of my very best friends in my year, and I think every year exemplifies something very similar.- Staff-to-resident – since we don’t have a junior/senior call system, all levels of residents get to know staff very early on and visa versa. From this, I think professional relationships are built and maintained early on, and there is a real sense that the staff are truly interested and invested in both the success and well-being of the residents.- Mentorship program – by the end of the first year, each resident can pick a staff to be their mentor. From this, the mentorship can be what the resident needs it to be – a dinner every now and then, help with research, occasional email correspondence, or even just being available to chat during good to bad times. It’s a fluid sort of relationship that most people seem to find helpful.- Accessibility to PD – we have formal check-ins with our PD 2-3 times/year to make sure we are on track/discuss any issues/concerns we have. We can set up meetings PRN, and can almost always reach our PD anytime by email or text.- Social – we have an annual resident-led retreat which involves attendance by both staff and residents and is always an amazing time! We also have several get togethers throughout the year and love ideas of planning social events!- House-keeping – academic half days and post-call days are the norm. You will be told to leave the hospital!
– I am currently in PGY-4 so have enjoyed my time on electives and prepping for fellowships applications. As expected, fellowship electives, prep and applications are fairly all-consuming! I am really looking forward to seeing how it all works out, and to be able to entirely focus on operating in my chief year! As I said above, chief year is a highlight of the program and I am so lucky to be able to go through it with the four other amazing women who are in my year. It’s going to be a hard, fun, and rewarding year!
– Small collegial program that fosters excellent working relationships between residents and staff.- Early hands-on experience in both the operating room and decision-making on the management of surgical inpatients.- Dedicated endoscopy program that produces independent endoscopists.- Six months of elective time to allow competitiveness for fellowships or time for those interested in community to try out different hospitals.- Formal mentorship program.- Weekly academic half-day and monthly journal club.- PGY-5 “chief year” – a year largely for operating with the goal to gain surgical independence.- Adaptable – General surgery was the first MUN program to declare a change in the policy for no-call for pregnant residents from 32 weeks to 28 weeks. The remaining MUN programs are now beginning to follow-suit.

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