Department of Surgery

A Message for Military Medical Students

Are you interested in surgery? Even a little? We invite you to consider what is available at Wright-Patterson Medical Center. We think our program is one of the best-kept secrets in Air Force Graduate Medical Education. And once you hear what we have to offer, we think you'll agree.

Wright-Patterson is partnered with every major hospital in the Dayton area to form the Wright State University School of Medicine (WSUSOM) Integrated General Surgery Residency Program. The other member hospitals are Miami Valley Hospital (a Level I trauma center), Good Samaritan Hospital, Kettering Medical Center, Children's Medical Center of Dayton (a pediatric trauma center) and the Dayton VA Medical Center. Each facility brings a different perspective to the residency and, as a military resident at Wright-Patt, you're sure to rotate at least once at each one. This integrated design to our training exposes our residents to a great variety of clinical approaches to surgical care. No "inbreeding" here. Best of all, our residents never really lose cases to downtown referrals. If a case can't be done at Wright-Patt, you or one of your fellow residents at another hospital in the city will likely do it.

Also, unlike several other Air Force training programs, you can receive all of your training here in Dayton. There is no need for you to travel somewhere else to get experience in, for example, trauma or transplant surgery. Of course, if you want to take a rotation elsewhere to get additional experience in an area of particular interest, it can always be arranged.

But how good is the training at Wright-Patt? We recently obtained full accreditation for five years (the longest interval allowed) ­ and there were no major or minor citations. This places the Wright State program in the top 10 percent of surgery programs in the country. Our residents have scored as high as 98 percent on the annual in service exam and our "first time pass rate" for both American Board of Surgery examinations combined is 75 percent, well above the national average.

Our graduates are highly competitive. We have sent graduates on to fellowships in all specialties, including cardiothoracic surgery, plastic surgery, colorectal surgery and vascular surgery. They have been accepted into such programs as the University of Oregon (plastic surgery), the University of Michigan (cardiothoracic surgery), and Baylor University (vascular surgery). In fact, every one of our graduates who has applied for a fellowship within the last four years has been successful in gaining a training slot.

What if you're interested in research? Well, you can arrange up to six months of research activity during your training if you want to. Setting up a research year is harder, but it can be done. And if you're interested in clinical research, since we are part of a civilian university, there are always a number of ongoing projects that you can get involved with whenever you desire.

About the only thing Wright-Patt doesn't have is great geography. We're in southwestern Ohio, about halfway between Cincinnati and Columbus. We don't have beaches or mountains, but it is a great place to raise a family. Around the area there are amusement parks, professional sports teams, outdoor recreational areas, and cultural events. And even though you'll be in training in a highly demanding profession, you're still likely to have some free time to enjoy it all. Our program's goal is to train you well, not kill you with "scut" work.

Additional information is available through this site and on the Wright-Patterson Medical Center web site.

If any (or all) of this sounds appealing to you, we'd love to hear from you. And since we'd love even better to meet you, we'd be more than happy to help arrange a rotation or interview trip for you as well. We'll not only tell you about Wright-Patt, but we'll take you downtown to meet the Wright State folks, and likely even get you lunch in the process.

Remember, interested residency applicants must also be accepted by the WSU School of Medicine Department of Surgery as well as the military GME Selection Board. We can help you with the process.

Please do not hesitate to contact Ms. Michelle Fullard, residency program coordinator; Maj. Brandon T. Grover, assistant residency program director; or me ( if you have any questions.


John S. Bruun, Lt. Col., USAF, MC, FS
Program Director
WSU General Surgery Residency Program

88th Surgical Operations Squadron/SGCQ
4881 Sugar Maple Drive
Wright-Patterson AFB OH 45433-5529
(937) 257-9514 or DSN 787-9514

Last edited on 01/29/2015.