Match Day 2018: Medical school’s inaugural class celebrates big day, prepares for next step in residency training

Match Day 2018 Results
Members of the Class of 2018 took part in Match Day on Friday, March 16, 2018, at the Bernhard Center at Western Michigan University.

The envelopes, please.

All at once, as the clock struck noon Friday, the 48 students from the medical school’s inaugural Class of 2018 learned where the next step in their journey as medical professionals – residency training – will take them.

“As a new medical school with students participating in the Match for the very first time, we are thrilled that 100% of our medical students matched to a residency slot as it is a very competitive process,” said Kevin Kavanaugh, MD, assistant dean for Career Development at the medical school.

“It has been my privilege, along with our faculty, to work closely with WMed students to assist them in identifying their specialty choice in preparation for the Match,” Kavanaugh added.

The excitement was all part of Match Day, a time-honored event that was held at medical schools across the country on Friday, March 16. The event was a culmination for WMed’s fourth-year students as the course of their medical careers was determined with the opening of an envelope and they learned where they will spend the next three or more years in residency training.

The anticipation of what the day would bring began building Friday morning when the doors to the North Ballroom at the Bernhard Center at Western Michigan University were opened to the students, their families and friends, invited faculty and members of the leadership team at WMed.

As they waited for the chance to open their envelopes, students greeted one another with smiles and nervous chatter filled the North Ballroom. Cell phones were at the ready as students and their families and friends snapped photos and selfies to capture the moment and document the joy of the big day.

And, then, at noon, the wait was over. The students opened their envelopes, each discovering where they would be headed for residency.

“I think for all of us it’s exciting to know somewhat of the future now,” said Sam Yost, president of the Class of 2018 who matched into Obstetrics and Gynecology at University of Michigan Health. “Everything goes from being hopes to now there’s this clarity and everything feels more real. It’s really nice to see everyone excited and getting to celebrate the culmination of all of our hard work.

“Now we have exactly in front of us what we’ve been working for and that by itself is a good feeling,” Yost added.

Key Highlights from this year’s Match

  • Every student in the Class of 2018 matched to a residency slot as part of a nationwide process that is increasingly competitive.
  • Two students from the inaugural Class of 2018 matched to residency slots at WMed and will complete their training in Kalamazoo in the specialties of Internal Medicine and Orthopaedic Surgery. They will join the 200-plus physicians-in-training in the medical school’s 12 residency and fellowship programs.
  • Nine students will remain in Michigan for residency, working in hospitals in Kalamazoo, Ann Arbor, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Livonia, and Pontiac.
  • 21 students will complete their training in a specialty that could lead to a career in primary care.
  • WMed students will train in residency programs in 23 different states across the US.
  • The students will complete their training in the following specialties and programs: 


  • Barnes-Jewish Hospital, Missouri
  • Jackson Memorial Hospital, Florida
  • SUNY Health Science Center at Brooklyn, New York
  • University at Buffalo School of Medicine, New York

Diagnostic Radiology

  • Cook County Health and Hospitals System, Illinois

Emergency Medicine

  • University of Illinois OSF St. Francis Medical Center, Illinois
  • University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas

Family Medicine

  • Pomona Valley Hospital, California

General Surgery

  • Hennepin County Medical Center, Minnesota
  • Huntington Memorial Hospital, California
  • Kaweah Delta Health Care District, California
  • St. Joseph Mercy Oakland, Michigan
  • St. Louis University School of Medicine, Missouri
  • SUNY Upstate Medical University, New York
  • University of Arizona College of Medicine - Tucson, Arizona
  • University of Kentucky Medical Center, Kentucky
  • University of Minnesota Medical School, Minnesota

Internal Medicine

  • Barnes-Jewish Hospital, Missouri
  • Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center, California
  • Medical College of Wisconsin Affiliates Hospitals, Wisconsin
  • Ohio State University Medical Center, Ohio
  • Providence Health, Oregon
  • Spectrum Health/Michigan State University, Michigan
  • Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine, Michigan


  • Marshall University School of Medicine, West Virginia


  • University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine, Florida

Obstetrics and Gynecology

  • St. John Hospital and Medical Center, Michigan
  • University of Michigan Health, Michigan


  • Texas Tech University, Texas

Orthopaedic Surgery

  • University of Hawaii, Hawaii
  • University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, Wisconsin
  • Western Michigan University Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine, Michigan


  • Indiana University School of Medicine, Indiana
  • University of Chicago Medical Center, Illinois


  • Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center, California
  • University of California Irvine Medical Center, California
  • University of Nevada Las Vegas School of Medicine, Nevada 
  • University of Oklahoma College of Medicine, Oklahoma
  • University of Texas at Austin Dell Medical School, Texas
  • University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, Wisconsin

Pediatrics/Psychiatry/Child Psychiatry

  • University of  Kentucky Medical Center, Kentucky


  • Emory University School of Medicine, Georgia
  • Harvard South Shore, Massachusetts
  • St. Mary Mercy Hospital, Michigan
  • Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, New Hampshire

The 2018 Main Residency Match process began in the fall for fourth-year students at WMed and other medical schools across the country when they applied to residency programs at which they wanted to train. As part of the process, Program directors review applications and conduct candidate interviews in the fall and early winter. From mid-January to late February, applicants submit to NRMP their rank order lists of preferred programs, and program directors rank applicants in order of preference for training. The NRMP uses a computerized mathematical algorithm to match applicants with programs using the preferences expressed on their ranked lists.

As they look ahead, students in the Class of 2018 will complete their final months of the fourth year curriculum which culminates in May with a community open house on Saturday, May 12 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on the W. E. Upjohn M.D. Campus and graduation where they will be honored during a ceremony at 2 p.m. on Sunday, May 13, at WMU’s Miller Auditorium. Both events are open to the public.