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WesternU COMP and COMP-Northwest celebrate Match Day

by Rodney Tanaka

March 27, 2024

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Click to view the COMP-Northwest Match Day photo gallery.

Western University of Health Sciences’ College of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific (COMP) and COMP-Northwest celebrated the accomplishments of Class of 2024 students as they learned where they placed into residencies.

Match Day, held on March 15, 2024, is celebrated across the U.S. as fourth-year medical students learn which U.S. residency programs they will train in for the next three to seven years.

Click to view the COMP Match Day photo gallery.

All DO and MD medical students enter the same residency pool and will become residents together in the same post-graduate training programs. The Match is hosted by the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP), through which medical students obtain residency positions in accredited training programs.

COMP has a 99.5% placement rate with 52% going into primary care.

Dr. Lisa Warren speaks at the 2024 COMP Match Day celebration. (Photo by Tom Zasadzinski)

“I am so incredibly proud of the Class of 2024. We had an amazing match with students placing in residency programs throughout the country in all specialties,” said COMP Assistant Dean of Graduate Medical Education and Residency Placement Lisa Warren, DO ’01, MBA. “This group of talented students are going to make such a positive impact for their future patients.”

COMP-Northwest has a 99% placement rate, with 55% going into primary care.

Dr. Mandi Hudson (center) encouraged Class of 2024 students to embrace the privilege and honor that comes with becoming an osteopathic physician. (Luke Rauch, WesternU)

“I want to express truly my heartfelt congratulations. As you open your envelopes and discover where your next steps in training will take place, remember that it’s a privilege and a responsibility to be an osteopathic physician. We get to touch lives in ways that most people don’t, and so just remember that privilege and that honor,” COMP-Northwest Site Dean Mandi Hudson, DO ’09, said during the COMP-Northwest Match Day celebration. “I have no doubt that you are each going to go on to do absolutely wonderful, beautiful things in the field of medicine, and so I congratulate you and may your journey ahead be filled with success, fulfillment and all of the opportunities that you hope for. Well done.”

COMP students celebrate matching into Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation residencies. (Photo by Tom Zasadzinski)

The American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM) celebrated a record residency match and the largest class of osteopathic medical (DO) students to ever participate in the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP)’s Match Week, according to an AACOM story. According to the NRMP, the percentage of matching DO seniors rose to 92.3 percent, the highest ever during the single match era. In addition, the number of U.S. DO seniors participating was a record high 8,033, an increase of 8.0 percent over 2023. Of those, 7,412 matched into first-year residency positions, an 8.8 percent increase from last year, also a new record high.

COMP held its Match Day celebration at the Doubletree Hotel Ontario Airport. COMP-Northwest held its celebration on its Lebanon, Ore. campus. COMP and COMP-Northwest Acting Dean David Connett, DO ’84, FACOFP, dist., offered a toast to the Class of 2024.

“Here’s to the Class of 2024. To the remarkable achievements. To the journeys ahead and the lives you will touch and transform,” Connett said. “May your careers be as fulfilling as your presence here today is to all of us. Congratulations Class of 2024. We’re immeasurably proud of you and look forward to your achievements.”

Left to right: WesternU President Robin Farias-Eisner, MD, PhD, MBA, Vice President of WesternU Oregon Student Affairs Mirabelle Fernandes Paul, EdD, and WesternU Provost Paula Crone, DO ’92. (Luke Rauch, WesternU)

WesternU President Robin Farias-Eisner, MD, PhD, MBA, also offered his congratulations. He noted this class started in fall 2020 amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are so proud of you for your grit, your tenacity, and your perseverance during these difficult times,” Farias-Eisner said. “You continue to demonstrate incredible dedication. We’re so grateful to your families, your friends and your loved ones who have supported you through these extremely exciting and yet challenging years. You will forever be our ambassadors. We are so honored you chose this institution and that we chose you. You will always be part of this family and we will always be here to support you. We know that you will go out and serve as healers on the world health care stage.”

Fourth-year COMP student Valeria Carrillo announces her residency match in internal medicine at Creighton University School of Medicine in Arizona. (Photo by Tom Zasadzinski)

Fourth-year COMP student Valeria Carrillo was thrilled when she opened her Match Day envelope, revealing that she placed into an internal medicine residency at Creighton University School of Medicine in Arizona.

“I feel a huge weight off my shoulders knowing where I’m going for the next three years,” she said. “I’m really happy to have a job.”

She had not decided which specialty to focus on until her clinical rotations.

“I saw in the hospital how much I loved helping people who were very sick help them get to where they could go home,” Carrillo said. “It’s really rewarding seeing them go back to their normal lives.”

COMP-Northwest student Paige Lay shows where she will be spending her time in residency. (Luke Rauch, WesternU)

Fourth-year COMP-Northwest student Paige Lay said she was nervous and excited in the days leading up to Match Day.

“When I opened the envelope, I was completely overtaken by extreme happiness. Tears of joy filled my eyes,” she said. “Even though the room was probably very loud around me, the silence of my success was overwhelming. I matched into University of Tennessee – Knoxville for Internal Medicine!”

COMP-Northwest student L.J. McKenzie matched into a family medicine residency at Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, Oregon. He enjoyed each of his clinical rotations and couldn’t imagine only getting to focus on one patient population. His favorite moments in medicine revolve around times of transition where he gets to partner with and educate those he’s caring for, which led him to family medicine.

COMP-Northwest student L.J. McKenzie displays his Match Day letter.

“I’ve loved being a part of the close-knit, family-feel community within COMP-Northwest. I’ve felt supported every step of the way from student to TA to Fellow to rotating sub-intern,” McKenzie said. “I truly believe that the community-oriented perspective of my education and rotations aligns with Family Medicine and will set my future practice up for success.”

Fourth-year COMP student Shan Kazmi said in the lead up to the 9 a.m. reveal, he was imagining all the possibilities and putting a positive spin on each one to mentally prepare himself. He placed into a neurology residency at Harbor-UCLA.

“It was a moment of pure joy and excitement,” Kazmi said of opening his Match Day envelope. “I’m so happy with what I got. I’m happy to be here right now and grateful for everyone who supported me in this journey.”

Kazmi said he has a genuine passion for neuroscience and an interest in research. During his third-year rotations he was impressed with the neurologists who didn’t just rely on imaging for their patients.

“They’re old school doctors. You rely on the physical exam as well as the imaging,” Kazmi said. “It felt like the perfect place and the perfect fit.”

Fourth-year COMP-Northwest student Sarah Rothwell matched into a family medicine residency at Marian Regional Medical Center.

Fourth-year COMP-Northwest student Sarah Rothwell matched into a family medicine residency at Marian Regional Medical Center in Santa Maria, Calif. She had difficulty in creating her residency rank list because she liked a lot of the programs that she interviewed at, Rothwell said, so she was nervous about submitting her list.

“When the day finally came to find out our residency location, I was just excited to see where I would be moving, and where all of my classmates matched,” Rothwell said. “It was a relief to open my envelope and see the name of the program that I had already been picturing myself at the most and knew I would enjoy, having rotated there previously. While residency will be a big adjustment, I am excited for the next steps in my career!”

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