Future physicians celebrate Match Day, look forward to medical careers

March 19, 2024

Fourth-year University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson students learned where they’ll launch their careers as new physicians.

Fourth-year medical students collect gift bags before learning where they will spend the next several years in residency training programs.

Fourth-year medical students collect gift bags before learning where they will spend the next several years in residency training programs.

Mitchell Masilun

At the March 15 Match Day ceremony, members of the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson Class of 2024 learned where they will spend the next three to seven years of their careers as physicians in specialized residency training programs.

Cheers erupted at 9 a.m. as more than 100 students tore open envelopes to learn where they matched and embraced each other and loved ones in celebration.

Around the country, more than 40,000 soon-to-be graduates from medical schools took part in the annual tradition, simultaneously learning where they were placed by the National Residency Matching Program.

“You will always remember today, your Match Day, as I remember mine,” said Michael Abecassis, MD, MBA, dean of the UArizona College of Medicine – Tucson. “The realization that the current leg of your journey is nearly over, and being rewarded, combined with the contemplation of the next leg makes for mixed emotions. It is a time filled with great anticipation and uncertainty and excitement. I would like to offer you all my deepest congratulations. You should be proud of what you have accomplished so far — and confident in your ability to succeed in this next chapter.”

“You’re going to be embarking on a journey over the next several years that will truly define who you are as a physician,” said Kevin Moynahan, MD, College of Medicine – Tucson vice dean for education. “As I’ve said to many of you, the two most impactful years of medical training, in my ample amount of experience, are your clerkship year and the first year of your residency. In that year, all of your knowledge and your experiences will come together to really emboss on you how you’re going to be as a future physician. I know you’re going to represent the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson well, no matter where you do that.”

Kaela Hiatt learns she will remain in Tucson to train in emergency medicine.

Kaela Hiatt learns she will remain in Tucson to train in emergency medicine at Banner – University Medical Center South in partnership with the College of Medicine – South Campus.

Mitchell Masilun

Twenty-two of the soon-to-be graduates matched into residency programs with Banner – University Medical Center in either Tucson or Phoenix.

“We extend our sincere congratulations to all the medical students who participated in Match Day. Many of these students began medical school right before the COVID-19 pandemic began to spread across the nation and we honor their adaptation, resiliency and dedication, and welcome them in their new roles as the future of medicine,” said Venkata (Bob) Evani, MD, CEO of Banner – University Medical Group and president of Banner Academics.

Tucson Match Results

Class of 2024 students matched at 66 graduate medical education training centers in 29 states and the District of Columbia at institutions including Stanford Health Care, UCLA Medical Center, McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University, Duke University Medical Center, The Mayo Clinic, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Brown University and Banner – University Medical Center. The graduates will pursue specialties in areas including ophthalmology, obstetrics and gynecology, neurology, pathology, orthopaedic surgery, diagnostic radiology, neurological surgery, dermatology, vascular surgery, child neurology and plastic surgery.

Over a quarter of graduates will remain in Arizona and more than half of the class will go into primary care, helping address the primary care shortage across the state and nation. Residencies generally start in July, and residents are required to go to the institution to which they matched.

Match Day highlights include:

  • 27.9% of graduates will complete their residencies in Arizona:
    • 20 in Tucson
    • 11 in the greater Phoenix area
  • Twenty-two graduates matched with Banner – University Medical Center residency programs in Tucson and Phoenix.
  • 51.0% of graduates matched into residencies in primary care fields, defined as family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, and obstetrics and gynecology:
    • 33.5% in internal medicine
    • 5.6% in family medicine
    • 4.6% in pediatrics
    • 6.5% in obstetrics and gynecology
  • 49.0% matched into non-primary care specialties, including:
    • 10.8% in emergency medicine
    • 8.7% in general surgery
    • 5.8% in psychiatry
    • 5.8% in neurology
    • 4.6% in anesthesiology
Match Day 2024

Ross Dubois

Meet the Class of 2024

There were 108 students who matched into residency programs. They include:

Gregory Branigan, PhD: ‘A lot of love and a lot of innovation’

Gregory Branigan, PhD

Gregory Branigan, PhD

Kris Hanning

Gregory Branigan, PhD, joined the College of Medicine – Tucson’s MD/PhD program in 2017. He earned a doctorate in medical pharmacology in 2021 and will receive his MD in May.

As a graduate student, he reviewed medical records of breast cancer patients and noticed that certain medications might lower Alzheimer’s risk, opening investigation into how these drugs could serve dual purposes. He hopes to continue this “open conversation” between the clinic and the lab.

“Research and medicine go hand in hand,” he said. “Alzheimer’s is a field where we need a lot of love in our clinical care and a lot of innovation in our research.”

He matched to a neurology residency program at Stanford University.

“I couldn’t be more excited — it’s a wonderful program and a great group of people,” he said. “They have an amazing pipeline to support those who want to do research and medicine.”

Dr. Branigan is excited to use the skills he gained by completing the Bilingual Medical Spanish Distinction Track, which was an aspect of the college that drew him here.

“I’m passionate about the Latinx communities, and Stanford is a place where I can work with populations that are typically underserved,” he said. “I’m incredibly honored to be able to do that.”

Monique Crawford, MSN, MS: ‘I’m very excited for the next chapter’

Monique Crawford, MSN, MS

Monique Crawford, MSN, MS

Mitchell Masilun

Monique Crawford, MSN, MS, was a nurse for eight years before deciding to pivot to medicine. As a medical student, she often drew from her nursing experience, but knew there was still a lot to learn.

“Medical school was still very humbling,” she said. “I was very comfortable as a nurse, but as a doctor, you take on a different role.”

During her time at the College of Medicine – Tucson, Crawford completed the Bilingual Medical Spanish Distinction Track so she could better serve her future patients.

“My family’s from Central America, so I grew up speaking a lot of Spanish,” she said. “I’ve always wanted to help the underserved, so I wanted to make sure I had the skills necessary to communicate in my first language — medical Spanish is different.”

An Arizona native, Crawford matched to a residency program in internal medicine at the University of Utah.

“I’ve never been there, so I’m ready to explore something new, and it’s still close to family so I’ll be able to see them quite often,” she said of her impending move to Salt Lake City. “I really like the program, and I’m looking forward to meeting my new intern class and future senior residents. I’m very excited for the next chapter.”

Learn more about Crawford’s journey to medical school.

Priyanka Hadvani, MS: ‘I was so excited’

Priyanka Hadvani, MS

Priyanka Hadvani, MS

Kris Hanning

Phoenix native Priyanka Hadvani, MS, matched into anesthesiology at Rush University in Chicago. 

“When I opened the envelope, I was so excited to see that I was going to be at Rush University, one of my top choices,” Hadvani said. “I’m really excited to be in Chicago for the next phase of my training.”

Hadvani started at the College of Medicine – Tucson a decade ago as an undergraduate in physiology and medical sciences.

“The physiology program solidified my desire to pursue medicine and was helpful in showing me that medicine was truly what I wanted to do with my life,” she said.

Hadvani chose anesthesiology because of opportunities to use experiences from her physiology background.

“I was always interested in having a heavy medicine foundation in the specialty I chose, and ultimately I decided to do anesthesia because I liked the hands-on procedures blended with the mix of physiology and medicine,” she said.

Hadvani hopes in the future that she’ll be able to work with residents.

“I hope to be involved in medical education so I can give back to the community and make medical school and residency better for the people who come after me,” she said.

Ziad Hindosh: ‘Waiting impatiently and patient at the same time’

Ziad Hindosh

Ziad Hindosh (center, in suit)

Sean O’Sullivan

Ziad Hindosh matched into internal medicine at UCLA-Olive View, close to where his partner lives in Southern California. 

“There was a lot of excitement, and a lot of work leading up to this moment,” he said. “I think all of us were just waiting impatiently and patient at the same time.”

Hindosh is excited to take the next steps in his medical career and get settled into a new city.

“I think it’s a good opportunity for all of us to go wherever we’re going and make the most out of everything and anything,” he said. “It’s a new home and a place to learn and grow.”

Hindosh chose internal medicine because he enjoys the dynamic thinking that the specialty requires. 

He studied physiology and medical sciences as an undergraduate at the College of Medicine – Tucson, which helped as he started medical school.

“The continuity definitely helped make an easy transition for medical school,” he said.

As he develops his career, Hindosh hopes to be a physician patients can trust.

“I want to be a good clinician and someone who really knows how to take care of patients in their families,” he said.

Adelina Lane, MS: ‘I love the acuity’

Adelina Lane

Adelina Lane (center)

Sean O’Sullivan

Adelina Lane, MS, loves Tucson, so she was happy to match into emergency medicine at her top choice, Banner – University Medical Center South in partnership with the College of Medicine – South Campus.

“The program here is amazing,” she said. “I decided to rank South Campus as my top choice and that’s where I’m going, so I’m very excited.”

Lane found a strong sense of camaraderie when working with the emergency medicine teams in Tucson.

“It’s just an amazing community of people,” she said. “They’re always there for you. It’s a very strong team dynamic in the emergency department, and I really thrive in that kind of environment.”

Lane studied physiology and medical sciences as an undergraduate before earning a master’s degree in physiology, both here at the College of Medicine – Tucson. 

“I got the basic science physiology and how the body works in the master’s program. Then, going into medicine, they tacked on what can go wrong, which is really neat,” she said.

When it was time to pick a specialty, Lane was drawn to the stressful nature of emergency medicine.

“I know it’s stressful for some people to handle that, but I love being able to help people,” she said.

Maya Lowney: ‘I’m beyond thrilled’

Maya Lowney

Maya Lowney (right)

Kris Hanning

Maya Lowney matched into general surgery at her top choice, Banner – University Medical Center in partnership with the College of Medicine – Tucson.

“I’m beyond thrilled,” Lowney said. “I’m very, very happy.”

Lowney was drawn to surgery because of the diverse work environment it provides. She can see herself working clinics, operating rooms or on the floor managing patients.

“General surgery is a great field,” she said. “We need a lot more people, especially women, to get into it, so I encourage women to seek it out.”

As an undergraduate studying physiology and medical sciences at the College of Medicine – Tucson, with a minor in dance, Lowney says her fondest memory is her senior thesis, for which she studied how dance affects the rehabilitative process of patients with Parkinson’s disease.

“It was a whole year of getting to explore fields that I really care about,” she said. “It was nice that the physiology program allowed me to do that.”

Lowney is excited to start the next phase of her medical career.

“I’m excited to continue my journey and foster relationships with all the amazing surgeons and residents who I’ll get to work with and enjoy Tucson,” Lowney said.

Mikayla Whalen: ‘It’s going to be a big change’

Mikayla Whalen

Mikayla Whalen

Mitchell Masilun

Phoenix native Mikayla Whalen is set to receive her MD in May. When she graduates, Whalen will become a double MedCat, since she received her bachelor’s degree in physiology and medical science from the College of Medicine – Tucson in 2018.

“I got all the academic experience I needed to apply to medical school,” she said of the undergraduate program here.

As a medical student, she was drawn to emergency medicine.

“I like being able to interact with my peers every day, and serving a completely different patient population depending on where you work is really exciting,” she said. “It is humbling to meet people you never would have met before, and it’s an amazing experience to interact with them.”

On Friday morning, she took a few deep breaths before opening her letter and learning she matched to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, a teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School.

“I ended up being lucky enough to get my first choice,” she said. “Everyone I met was amazing, and I loved the program director. I felt like it would have a supportive, family-style feel.”

For now, she’s navigating the logistics of a cross-country move.

“I’ve never lived anywhere like Boston — it will be the biggest city I’ve ever lived in,” she said. “It’s going to be a big change.”

Sean O’Sullivan
Anna C. Christensen