The Yale Pediatric Resident Experience: Learning and Living Well
We believe that our faculty, training sites and curriculum provide an ideal environment for learning. What sets us apart from other residency programs is our commitment to optimizing opportunities for our residents to establish meaningful and rewarding relationships with each other and with our faculty. We also believe that a focus on resident wellness is a crucial component of a well-rounded training experience and strive to support our residents as physicians and as people at every opportunity.
While residency training offers rich rewards, it is also a time of hard work and personal challenge. As program leaders, we recognize that caring for very ill and needy children, supporting families, and pulling long hours, while indelible aspects of training for all pediatricians, can have an impact on our trainees. For this reason, our leadership team prioritizes resident wellness in the form of candid discussions regarding matters of mental health in medical training, teaching proactive wellbeing strategies, identification of mental health resources available to all residents, and wellness-promoting events. Each Inpatient Academic Half Day provides set-aside time for resident reflection on the experience of training and being a pediatrician. Our goal is to spotlight opportunities to help our residents to care for themselves so that they can learn optimally, take the best care of their patients, and thrive during residency and beyond.
Class Specific Advising and Support
Each residency class is mentored throughout the three years of pediatric training by one of our wonderful Associate Program Directors (APDs). This model allows for the development of close bonds both as a class and to the APD. Regular meetings with class-specific APDs offer a platform for close mentoring and personal support. In addition, APDs host at least annual gatherings, often in their own homes, for classes to come together as a group and reflect on shared goals and challenges, and to provide support.
Our two-day Intern Retreat at the spectacular Hole in the Wall Gang Camp is a highly anticipated and unforgettable event that occurs every fall. Seniors provide coverage for Intern Retreat, a chance to come together as a full class for fun and relaxation in a beautiful setting. Our PGY 2 and 3 classes also have annual retreats, usually along with their class-specific Associate Program Directors.
Led by talented PGY3 Sasha Shackelford, the Yale Pediatric Running Club offers the chance for free social outdoor exercise and time with co-residents and faculty. Throughout the year, Sasha emails the Club with invitations to meet up for runs which are tailored to whoever comes that day in terms of terrain, length, and pace. Runs usually take place in the afternoon after work. All paces and running experiences welcome. Sasha's runs have taken place in downtown New Haven, on the Farmington Canal trail, in East Rock Park, and at Lighthouse Point. The club also completed several local races together ranging from a 5k to a half marathon in Banff National Park.
Yale Pediatric Moms (and Dads)
We are proud to have many parenting resident members of Yale Pediatrics community. The parents in our program support one another with pediatrician and babysitter recommendations, hand-me-downs, and shared wisdom on breastfeeding. Our parents also have been known to babysit for one another when something comes up. One of our pediatric chief residents has formed Yale Pediatric Moms, a group to organize meet-ups and have a central online forum for advice about parenting while being a resident. Our faculty are supportive of resident parents as well. For example, there is a beautiful cradle owned by one of our attendings which has been used by generations of Yale pediatric trainees. One of our residents recently realized that both her son and her pediatrician's son had used the same cradle.
New Haven's population of 130,000 makes it the second largest city in Connecticut, but it retains a distinctly college town feel.
The Immunizers Softball Team
Our softball team, The Immunizers, plays weekly in the spring and summer and our games are well attended by both players and fans.
Men of Peds
Yale is proud to have a well-balanced resident class in countless ways, one of many being a strong group of male pediatricians-in-training. These "Men of Peds" have a proud tradition of organizing events of all sorts to breed camaraderie and pride amongst themselves, from bow-tie Fridays to poker night Saturdays.
Holiday Party & Graduation
Twice each year, coverage is provided for each and every resident in the program so that all may come together to celebrate each other at both the holiday party and graduation. These nights are a wonderful chance to reunite all classes as well as beloved faculty and are filled with laughter and dancing.