Skip to Main Content
CWRU Links

School of
Medicine

Surgery

Postgraduate Years

Postgraduate Years

Postgraduate Year 1 (PGY1)

Postgraduate Year 1 residents experience pre- and post-operative care in minor surgical procedures. They assist in developing opportunities for increased exposure through our "See More, Do More" philosophy. Postgraduate Year 1 residents assist with medical student teaching and also participate in teaching conferences. Three weeks of vacation are given during this first year.

Sample Rotation Schedule: Postgraduate Year 1

  • Three months of general surgery
  • Two months of vascular surgery
  • Two months of emergency surgery
  • One month of trauma surgery
  • One month of burn unit
  • One month of surgical intensive care unit
  • One month of cardiothoracic surgery

Postgraduate Year 2 (PGY 2)

In Postgraduate Year 2, residents have greater responsibility for patient evaluation compared to PGY 1. PGY 2 is a year of growth and progressive responsibility, designed as an opportunity to further develop the skills acquired in PGY 1 in the operating room. The workings of the surgical team are clearly emphasized during this year. Residents are given four weeks of vacation during their second year.

The Postgraduate Year 2 rotation schedule typically is 10 blocks. Each block consists of four or six weeks.

Sample Rotation Schedule: Postgraduate Year 2

  • Three blocks of general surgery
  • Two blocks of trauma surgery
  • One block of colorectal surgery
  • One block of surgical intensive care unit
  • One block of pediatric
  • One block of emergency surgery
  • One block of thoracic surgery

Postgraduate Year 3 (PGY 3)

Postgraduate Year 3 residents coordinate teaching of junior residents and medical students. PGY 3 is a year in which residents refine their surgical skills. A Year 3 resident should expect to serve as "chief" resident at the busy trauma surgical intensive care unit (SICU), renal transplant and acute care surgery service. He or she will have a focused endoscopy experience rotating at all three of our institutions. Postgraduate Year 3 residents receive four weeks of vacation.

Sample Rotation Schedule: Postgraduate Year 3

  • Four months of general surgery/surgical oncology
  • Two months of thoracic surgery
  • Two months of endoscopy
  • Two months of surgical intensive care unit night float chief
  • One month of transplant surgery
  • One month of vascular surgery

Postgraduate Year 4 (PGY 4)

In Postgraduate Year 4, the resident is the chief resident on the following:

  • Pediatric surgery
  • Trauma surgery
  • Emergency surgery
  • General surgery/surgical oncology
  • Vascular surgery

Postgraduate Year 4 residents will receive four weeks of vacation.

Sample Rotation Schedule: Postgraduate Year 4

  • Two months of general surgery
  • Two months of emergency surgery
  • Two months of general surgery/surgical oncology
  • Two months of vascular surgery
  • Two months of pediatric surgery
  • Two months of trauma surgery

Postgraduate Year 5 (PGY 5)

Surgeons workingAs residents enter into Postgraduate Year 5, they become chief on all services. With this year comes the significant responsibility of teaching in the clinical setting and in conferences. Residents also are given the opportunity to serve as administrative chief resident. Postgraduate Year 5 students receive four weeks of vacation.

Sample Rotation Schedule: Postgraduate Year 5

  • Six months of general surgery
  • Two months of vascular surgery
  • Two months of colorectal surgery
  • Two months of hepatobiliary surgery