Current Editors: Renat Ahatov, Michael Phan, and Andrea Francis

(Please email editors if there is blog-worthy news that you would like to see shared)

Past Editors: Elise Weisert, Michael Ryan, Keith Wagner, Tim Allen, Kristyna Gleghorn, Dung Mac, Alex Acosta, William Tausend, Sheila Jalalat, Rebecca Philips, Chelsea Altinger, Lindsey Hunter, Alison Wiesenthal, Leslie Scroggins, Mara Dacso, Ashley Group, Fadi Constantine, Emily Fridlington, Joslyn Witherspoon, Tasneem Poonawalla.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Good luck in the NRMP Dermatology Match!

Last week dermatology residency programs and applicants submitted their confidential final rank order lists to the NRMP. Now all wait for match day on Friday, March 18, 2016.  Six UTMB MS4s are hoping to match into dermatology residency positions next month. Our UTMB dermatology residency program hopes to fill all 4 available positions offered through the match. Good luck everyone from the UTMB DIG!

Dr. Vail C. Reese Headlines April Spring 2016 Texas Dermatological Society Meeting in Houston

UTMB medical students are encouraged to attend the annual spring Texas Dermatological Society Meeting in Houston at the Omni Hotel. Registration for medical students is free!  Excellent resident and faculty speakers on multiple interesting dermatology topics are scheduled to lecture starting on Friday afternoon, April 15th at 1 pm. Educational activities continue the next day at 8 am. On Saturday afternoon, April 16, 2016 at 1 pm Dr. Reese will lecture on “Dermatology in the Cinema.” Dr. Wagner’s dermatology film class students are very familiar with Dr. Reese’s vast academic contributions to dermatology film study through is famous website, skinema.com (a great resource for medical students who want to learn more about skin diseases depicted in movies). Please welcome Dr. Reese to Houston and let him know what you have learned from his website! To register for this meeting, please contact Ms. Sylvia Hall (Registration Coordinator for the Texas Dermatological Society),  sylvia.hall@texmed.org

Volunteer to Present Stay Shady at Crenshaw Elementary

DIG has two Stay Shady presentations scheduled for next week: The first is at Satori Elementary School K-2nd grade on Tuesday, March 8th at 2:30 pm. The second is at Crenshaw Elementary 3rd-5th grade on Friday, March 11th at 8:30 am and 10:45 am. 

Please sign up using the google doc below and let us know when you are available to help out! Just as a refresher, the Stay Shady program consists of giving a short presentation (about 10-15mins) about Sun safety followed by helping the kids make UV color changing bracelets with beads! Please sign up to help out with this fun activity!


Thank you and feel free to contact us with any questions!

Tim Allen MSII tirallen2@utmb.edu
Tara Akunna MSII taakunna@utmb.edu

Gold Honor Humanism Society Residency Mentorship Meeting

Gold Honor Humanism Society (GHHS) is hosting a residency mentorship meeting on March 9th from 5-7 pm in Jamail. MSIIIs will have the opportunity to talk with current MSIVs matching into their specialty of choice for advice on away rotations, applications, and interviews. Current dermatology applicants will be attending this meeting to help future applicants. Please follow the link below to sign up:  

UTMB Dedicates New Hospital

Last week UTMB held a dedication ceremony for our newest hospital, Jennie Sealy Hospital (Ackerman T. New hospital capstone of Ike recovery: UTMB Galveston dedicates facility designed to withstand anything Gulf ‘can throw at it,’ Houston Chronicle, Saturday, February 27, 2016, pages B1, B3). It cost $438 million to build this 310 bed facility. The new hospital has 12 floors and is elevated 25 feet above sea level. Jennie Sealy Hospital will begin admitting patients in March 2016.

Where is the Galveston Trolley?

Pre-Ike island visitors and Galveston residents recall the Galveston trolley. There are plans to return it to Galveston, but the date remains indeterminate (Ferguson JW, Year after OK, Galveston’s trolley still year away, Volume 173, Number 321, Saturday February 27, 2016, pages A1, A4). We are hopeful that everything will be running by next summer.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Three Year US Medical Schools and Residency Implications for Dermatology

The concept of offering MD degrees to US medical students after 3 years of study is becoming popular again. Historically this was previously attempted in the 1970s, but concerns about graduate performance led to its demise. The motivation for its re-emergence is largely the same—more graduates to address a perceived future physician shortage and less debt for medical students (Grossman RI, Abramson SB. Needed: A Three-Year Medical Degree. Wall Street Jounal, page A11, February 18, 2016). Drs. Grossman and Abramson describe their experience with a 3 year medical school curriculum at one of our nation’s top medical school, New York University (NYU). When NYU initiated their 3 year program in 2013, accepted students had to know what type of residency they wanted so they could spend the first 6 weeks of medical school with that department. They were “pre-accepted” for residency at NYU into that specialty as long as they performed well academically in medical school. How “pre-acceptance” into residency programs during the first year of medical school will evolve will be of interest, especially for competitive specialties such as dermatology. At UTMB first year medical students already arrive on campus knowing that they want to specialize in dermatology. Is it possible that in the future all of the dermatology residency positions will be pre-matched for 3 year medical school graduates who had high MCAT scores?

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Educating UTMB House Staff About Depression and Suicide

Physicians are not immune from depression and suicide. Help is readily available! The UTMB Graduate Medical Education will conduct a mandatory lecture, “Depression, Suicide and Physicians” on Monday, February 29th or Tuesday, March 1st. All UTMB  house staff are required to attend.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Annual Dermatology ITE this Week

The UTMB DIG wishes all of our UTMB dermatology residents good luck on their dermatology ITE on Thursday, February 18th. We know that you have been preparing for this test all year, and it will be great to have it done!


2016 Mardi Gras celebrants were treated to a rare Texas public performance by the 1990s rock band Zaemon in Galveston on January 30th. Guitarist Dr. Brent Kelly (photo) leads the festivities. We hope to see them back performing in Galveston soon!

UTMB MS3 Awarded Summer 2016 AAD Diversity Mentorship Scholarship

The UTMB DIG congratulates UTMB MS3 Jorge Roman for his recent award of a Diversity Mentorship Scholarship from the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD). Jorge plans to use this award to study dermatology at UT Southwestern this summer in Dallas. Dr. Richard Wagner, our Dermatology Interest Group faculty advisor, sponsored Jorge’s scholarship application for this award.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Baylor Medical School Off Probation

According to the February 14, 2016 edition of the Houston Chronicle, Baylor Medical School has been taken off probation by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education after 19 months for multiple administrative deficiencies. The entire article by reporter Todd Ackerman is a worthwhile read for medical educators, since Baylor is considered one of the elite medical schools in Texas (Baylor medical school freed from probation: President says changes made in last 19 months made the university better. Pages B1 and B2).

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Post-Dermatology Residency Interview Communication: What Should Programs Tell the Applicant?

Communications with applicants after residency interviews was addressed in the timely February issue of Journal of Graduate Medical Education (Grimm, LJ, Avery CS, Maxfield CM. Residency postinterview communications: more  harm than Good? Volume 8, Number 1, pages 7-9, 2016). According to these Duke physicians, applicants may misinterpret communications from programs where they interviewed and then be disappointed when they do not match at that program. The “simplest solution” according to the authors is to “…ban all communications.” Alternative solutions involve complex rules that may be difficult for residency programs to monitor and implement without error. Since about 46% of surveyed program directors agree with a total communication ban postinterview, applicants should not be concerned if they don’t receive a response to their postinterview “thank you” communication that indicates their desire to join the program.

Saturday, February 06, 2016

Uber Discontinues Service in Galveston

A dispute between Uber and Galveston’s new regulations requiring Uber drivers to be fingerprinted, vehicle charges and caps has led Uber to withdraw its services from Galveston, as reported by Houston Chronicle Reporter Dug Begley (Uber pulls its operations out of Galveston: Ride service objects to regulations that are tailored for taxicab service, Houston Chronicle, Friday, February 5, 2016, page B4).

Only One Invitee to UTMB Dermatology Residency Interviews Canceled This Year

UTMB usually invites about 30 outside applicants to interview for 4 available residency positions each year. Over the past few years, about 6 invitees typically cancel their interview. However, this year only one out-of-state invitee canceled. This observed change in the number of interview cancellations may indicate increased interest in the UTMB dermatology residency program. Dermatology residency positions at UTMB appear to have become more competitive compared to previous years!

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

DIGA Winter Newsletter Special Feature: Advice to Dermatology Applicants- A Q&A with the Chairman and Associate Program Director at Thomas Jefferson University

The Dermatology Interest Group Association (DIGA) recently published it's Winter Newsletter featuring an interview with Dr. Uitto and Dr. Keller, the chairman and associate program director at Thomas Jefferson University. This interview contains valuable information to future applicants. They encouraged medical students to build rapport with their university's dermatology program early and participate in quality research projects to show sustained interest. AOA, away rotations, interviews, and ways to stand out as an applicant were also discussed.  Interestingly, Dr. Uitto was previously not a proponent of away rotations but has changed his mind and strongly encourages applicants to do dermatology clinical rotations at other institutions during their fourth year to demonstrate true commitment and initiative.  

Monday, February 01, 2016

Dermatology Night at St. Vincent’s Clinic on Feb 4th, 2016

Join UTMB Dermatology faculties for the upcoming dermatology night at St. Vincent’s Clinic. Please see the calendar link below to reserve your volunteering spot:

When: Thursday, Feb 4th, 5:30-9PM (volunteers should arrive at 5:15)
Where: St. Vincent's House, 2817 Post Office Street, Galveston, Texas 77550