Foster School of Medicine Class of 2022 Celebrates Residency Matches

Foster School of Medicine Class of 2022 Celebrates Residency Matches

On Match Day 2022, students learned where they will go for residency training

The Foster School of Medicine’s class of 2022 has overcome enormous challenges to arrive at the cusp of their next great adventure: residency training.

They completed their last two years of education at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso during the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, and on Friday, March 18, they celebrated Match Day with family and friends.

Friday was Match Day 2022 nationwide, when thousands of graduating medical students across the country found out where they will continue their training.

All 91 members of the Foster School of Medicine’s class of 2022 matched to residency programs across the nation. This includes:

  • 18 Foster School of Medicine students who matched with residencies in the Borderplex region.
  • Of those 18 students, 17 matched with residencies in El Paso.
  • Of those 17 students, 15 matched with residencies at TTUHSC El Paso.

Additionally, a preliminary number of 68 medical students from other schools around the world matched with TTUHSC El Paso residency programs, and six residents will begin fellowships at TTUHSC El Paso.

TTUHSC El Paso offers 15 residency programs with openings for more than 200 talented medical residents from the Borderland and across the nation. Residency programs currently offered include: emergency medicine, family medicine, internal medicine, OB-GYN, neurology, pediatrics, psychiatry, radiology, surgery and orthopedic surgery. All residency programs at TTUHSC El Paso meet the accreditation standards of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education and the American Board of Medical Specialties.

New Residency Program

This year, TTUHSC El Paso’s Match Day expanded to include a new residency program for family medicine. Residents will train at the Texas Tech Physicians of El Paso at Transmountain clinical practice, a collaboration between The Hospitals of Providence Transmountain Campus and TTUHSC El Paso. The partnership is helping to expand the Foster School of Medicine’s training capacity and improve access to health care in the region.

All programs at TTUHSC El Paso provide residents with unique clinical training experiences and opportunities for research and scholarly activities. TTUHSC El Paso’s location along the U.S.-Mexico border also provides residents the opportunity to better understand border health and practice culturally competent care for the region’s predominantly Hispanic population.

In time, TTP El Paso at Transmountain will be home to up to 100 new resident positions at the West El Paso site. Medical residents often remain in the region where they are train, so matching to El Paso residencies helps fulfill the Foster School of Medicine’s mission of reducing physician shortages impacting the Borderplex.

3 … 2 … 1 … “Open your envelopes!”

As countdowns go, it’s hard to top New Year’s Eve. But for Foster School of Medicine students, the traditional Match Day countdown is one they’ll remember for a lifetime.

As the seconds ticked down, Foster School of Medicine student Giselle Angermaier held her envelope with an excited smile. She opened it to reveal she got her first choice – to continue her medical education as a psychiatry resident with TTUHSC El Paso. 

“I was born and raised in El Paso, and it’s really special to continue my training here and serve my community,” she said. “I’m excited to stay.”

Angermaier has been interested in psychiatry for a long time and considers it a special moment to see it come to fruition.

“Psychiatry is an important field,” Angermaier said. “Mental health is so important, and it’s had a stigma in the past – we’re changing that. Still, there’s an abundance of need, so it’s exciting to enter this field.”

Angermaier also is glad to take part in fulfilling the Foster School of Medicine’s mission.

“I think it’s crucial to have doctors who are born and raised in El Paso and who stay here to serve their community,” she said. “This is an underserved population, so we need more doctors. I’m grateful to be a part of it.”

Eric Vest has called El Paso home since the third grade. With his wife Iliane, and 4-month-old son Logan, Vest was keen on staying in El Paso for his residency.

He was overjoyed when he got his wish and matched with TTUHSC El Paso’s Department of Emergency Medicine, a three-year residency program.

“When I applied to the Foster School of Medicine, I told them directly, during my interview, that I plan to stay here post-graduation as a resident,” Vest said. “And I’m doing exactly that. There was no question about it that that’s what I was going to do.” 

The past two years have been challenging for the Foster School of Medicine’s class of 2022 because of how the COVID-19 pandemic changed higher education across the country, including at TTUHSC El Paso.

It also offered an opportunity for students like Vest to get unique training associated with a global pandemic. He and fellow students completed clinical rotations in emergency departments and intensive care units at local hospitals during the pandemic. El Paso was one of the hardest hit communities in the country in fall 2020, when the city experienced some of the highest hospitalization and daily positive case rates in the nation.

“It was really intense,” he said, describing the COVID-19 safety protocols students had to follow during their clinical training. “I could relate to the families who may not have been able to go upstairs to see their loved ones. But I could go downstairs and talk to them and explain their progress. It was very personal to me, and I understood what they were going through because I knew people who were affected at the hospital, too.”

Vest is thankful the Foster School of Medicine opened more than 10 years ago because of the educational opportunities it offers El Pasoans and how it helps the community.

“There needs to be more doctors here, and I’m grateful the school opened because it gave me, a local, the opportunity to stay here within a hospital setting where I can treat the patients who call our region home,” Vest said. “I can stay in my community and make a difference – that was the whole purpose of opening a four-year medical school in El Paso.”

The Foster School of Medicine’s Mission

In 2008, prior to the opening of the Foster School of Medicine, El Paso County’s average number of direct care physicians per 100,000 people was 75% less than the national average. Today, that shortage has been reduced to 60%, more than 10 years after the medical school’s opening. The school’s focus on training students in culturally competent care will help keep future physicians in the Borderplex region and West Texas to treat patients in metropolitan and rural areas.

Thanks to the Foster School of Medicine, talented local students with a passion for medicine and serving the community have the option to apply for medical school and residency programs in their hometowns. Currently, there are 705 graduates of the Foster School of Medicine who have become or are on their way to becoming practicing physicians.

About TTUHSC El Paso 

TTUHSC El Paso is the only health sciences center on the U.S.-Mexico border and serves 108 counties in West Texas that have been historically underserved. TTUHSC El Paso is designated as a Title V Hispanic-Serving Institution, preparing the next generation of health care heroes, 48% of whom identify as Hispanic and are often first-generation college students.

Check out our gallery of photos from Match Day 2022: