The Division of Plastic Surgery residency program is a pioneer of the integrated resident pathway. As one of the five original integrated plastic surgery programs, our innovative apprenticeship model of surgical education provides the opportunity for real mentorship and emphasizes early and significant exposure to plastic surgery.

We have enjoyed uninterrupted full accreditation since 1995 and have taken part in the National Residency Matching Program (NRMP) with eligibility to accept one to two graduating medical students into our program each year. During the six years of training, residents will have nearly five years of dedicated plastic surgery training. The Division of Plastic Surgery oversees and has full responsibility for our integrated resident throughout their entire six years of training, including rotations on other surgical subspecialty services.

At the University of Missouri, we continue to innovate plastic surgery resident education and remain firm in our commitment to excellence in the delivery of care to our patients. We believe that, while preparing you to be the best plastic surgeon you can be, we should also strive to provide you the tools and support to be successful beyond the walls of the hospital. Our expectations of you are high, and we anticipate your expectations of our program should be, too. We encourage all interested applicants to submit an application through the NRMP and look forward to learning more about each of you!

Program Highlights

An emphasis on plastic surgery
Plastic surgery training at the University of Missouri is unique in that the integrated plastic surgery resident will spend more than six months on the plastic surgery service during each of the first two years and nine months during the third year. You will log a total of nearly 23 months on plastic surgery prior to your fourth year in residency. This has proven to be a distinct advantage to the resident in the latter three years of training, which are spent fully dedicated to the plastic surgery service. Your fourth year of residency is a transitional year consisting of three months with time fully dedicated to research and three months of unprotected research, and six months of clinical plastic surgery.  Your fifth and sixth years are spent entirely on clinical plastic surgery with your final year as chief resident.

Focused off-service curriculum
Off-service rotations complement the necessary core knowledge needed by plastic surgeons. Rotations will consist of general surgery subspecialties, including surgical critical care, acute care surgery (trauma), burn surgery, oncologic surgery, pediatric surgery, and vascular surgery, with additional experiences in anesthesiology, dermatology, emergency medicine, and orthopaedic hand surgery.

Early operative experience
We believe in early gratification to create a bond and identification as a plastic surgery resident and are committed to providing you hands-on experience. As a resident in our program you will be involved in all clinical activities including preoperative evaluation, surgery, postoperative care and follow-up throughout the entirety of your residency. Operative responsibilities are awarded progressively as your ability develops, and it would not be unusual for you to be in the role of operating surgeon on some significant plastic surgery cases during your very first month on plastic surgery.

Learn from leaders in the field
You will work side-by-side with faculty members to provide excellent care for patients and to ensure an excellent educational experience. In addition to having full training in plastic surgery and certification by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, the attending plastic surgeons in this program are all fellowship-trained. All have subspecialty certificates in surgery of the hand and one also has craniofacial fellowship training. Our program offers the entire spectrum of plastic surgery procedures including cosmetic, reconstructive (traumatic, oncologic, and congenital), craniofacial, cleft lip and palate, hand, peripheral nerve, and microsurgical.

Mentorship and growth
As a resident in our program you will be provided constructive feedback during and after each rotation. You are provided regular opportunities to anonymously review the program, faculty and other resident members of the program. Each resident’s progress is discussed semiannually by all faculty members and a comprehensive assessment takes place between the resident and the program director twice per year. During this assessment, progress is discussed and unique competency based training goals are established for each resident. A formal and comprehensive program review is performed each year during our annual program retreat. All residents and faculty are present and this serves as an open forum for discussion regarding the future direction of the program’s growth and refinement.

Academic engagement
Our residents are encouraged to maintain a high level of academic engagement throughout all years of residency training. You will be encouraged early on to identify clinical areas of interest and will be provided mentorship in the cultivation of your curiosity into both clinical and basic science research efforts. Time and funding are available to present research at any meetings at which an abstract is accepted and during your chief year you will be able to attend another meeting of your choosing.

How to apply

Applications for the plastic surgery residency program are only accepted through the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS). Our program does not have a supplemental application. Review of ERAS applications will begin in September. Your application must be complete by November 1 to be considered for an interview.

Resident Contract

Required documents

Supporting documents are required and should be directed to ERAS:

  • Personal statement
  • Three letters of recommendation from persons familiar with your clinical performance, preference is given to letters from board certified plastic surgeons. The ACAPS Letter of Recommendation Form should be utilized when possible.
  • Transcript and Dean’s letter of reference
  • USMLE scores
  • Recent photograph

Interview Process and Selection of Candidates

We often receive more than 200 applications each year and invite approximately 45 individuals to interview. Interviews are granted by invitation only and interview dates are held in January. Timely acceptance of your interview offer is appreciated. A special group rate for lodging is available and will be provided in your interview confirmation email. You will have the opportunity to dine with some of our residents the night before your interview in a casual setting, and all applicants are strongly encouraged to attend.

During the interview day you will have a series of 20 minute interviews with our four attending plastic surgeons. There will be ample time for you to meet and spend time with our integrated residents. Your time between interviews will be spent interacting with our residents which will allow you to question any of them at length. Should you have additional questions or concerns, we are more than happy to address them in the wrap-up session. Breakfast and lunch are provided. 

Residency training at MU