This one year clinical program offers an applicant the opportunity to develop his/her laparoscopic skills under the direction of highly trained surgeons performing the full spectrum of weight loss procedures.

The fellow will also gain experience in comprehensive weight management providing the expertise to establish or fully integrate into a comprehensive weight loss program after training completion. The focus of the fellowship is on bariatric and advanced foregut surgery. A fellow will develop proficiency in Laparoscopic Gastric Bypass, Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy, and Laparoscopic duodenal switch surgery. Due to the high volume and long-standing nature of the program, a high volume of revisional surgery both for weight loss and complications secondary to procedures will be performed. Experience in robotic weight loss surgery will also be provided. Additionally, there is a substantial volume of flexible endoscopy during the fellowship both of a diagnostic and interventional nature. The University of Missouri at Columbia is a busy tertiary referral hospital and offers a clinical experience that is unsurpassed. In addition to the high volume of initial surgical procedures, fellows get an exceptional experience managing the numerous complicated or revisional bariatric cases, as well as other foregut operations which are sent from surrounding institutions.

As a result of collaborative relationships with both industry and basic and clinical scientists within the School of Medicine and around the University of Missouri campus, research opportunities are abundantly available to the extent that the fellow wishes to become involved.

This fellowship offers the applicant both the case volume and expert instruction necessary to become a superior general laparoscopic surgeon and laparoscopic bariatric surgeon. Our objective is to produce surgeons eminently well prepared for the next phase of their professional life whether in academic or in private practice.

The Bariatric Surgery Fellowship accepts two fellows per year.

Program Highlights

  • 60% gastric bypass.
  • Complex weight loss procedures.
  • Integrated comprehensive weight loss program.
  • Opportunities for clinical and basic science research and publications.
  • Extensive advanced upper endoscopy experience: dilations, stenting and endoscopic suturing.
  • Robotic training
  • Assistance in contract evaluations and negotiations from experienced faculty during post-fellowship job search.

Clinical Volume

Extensive operative experience in routine to complex operations including expansive endoscopic experience necessary for managing bariatric surgery patients.

In 2020-21, two fellows performed 756 cases and 1,076 procedures, including more than 400 bariatric cases and more than 450 endoscopies.

Simulation and training

  • Robotic curriculum with training console.
  • Simulation dry lab.
  • Porcine lab.


  • Year-long program using ASMBS fellow didactic program plus monthly journal clubs and teaching lectures incorporating all key components of bariatric surgery, which meets ASMBS and Fellowship Council standards.
  • Didactics held at various restaurants around Columbia, offering informal setting for educational events.

Research/Scholarship Resources

Because of the large volume of patients in our program, and the variety of procedures offered to our patients, fellows are able to initiate randomized prospective studies or perform meaningful retrospective analysis. The University has a formal IRB with specific protocols that must be followed. Protected time for research is guaranteed, and assistance with presentations/publications is available through research nurses within the surgery department.

Examples of Research Options

  • Basic science/translational research.
  • Retrospective chart reviews.
  • Quality outcomes research using national databases.
  • Videos/case reports


  • Full time research technician
  • Two full time research nurses
  • Biostatistician

Publications and Presentations

Our fellows have been actively engaged in research, presenting at national meetings in each of the last three years.

How to Apply

Applicants may apply through The Fellowship Council.


Citizenship and Visa Requirements

  • U.S. Citizens.
  • U.S. Permanent Residents (Green Card).

Medical School Requirements

  • We accept graduates of U.S. or Canadian Medical Schools.
  • We accept graduates of Foreign Medical Schools only if ECFMG Certified.

Examinations and Certifications

  • Applicants must have passed the USMLE/COMLEX Step 1, 2 & 3 exams.
  • Applicants must have passed the USMLE/COMLEX Step 1 & 2 exams or the Medical Council of Canada Evaluation Exam (MCCEE).
  • Applicants must have had at least two years of prior training in an ACGME accredited residency or fellowship (or Canadian equivalent).
    • Applicants who are ABS or Canadian Board Eligible or Certified.
    • Applicants who hold a General Surgery specialty certificate from a Board or College outside of U.S. or Canada at the beginning of the fellowship.
  • Applicants must have had at least two years of prior training in an American Osteopathic Association-accredited residency or fellowship.
  • Applicants must be American Osteopathic Board of Surgery eligible or certified.

Licensure Requirements and Information

Must be able to be licensed and credentialed in the United States. Must be able to obtain a permanent Missouri license. Fellows at the University of Missouri will have Attending status at the university. Fellow must have completed an ACGME-accredited General Surgery Residency, be Board eligible or certified with the American Board of Surgery, and meet all requirements to obtain a full unrestricted Missouri Medical License and obtain a DEA license.