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March matchmaking

 The University of Minnesota Medical School celebrated its own version of “March Madness” last month in a national annual rite of passage known as Match Day. (Top) Nicole Gergen celebrates her match to Brown University's medicine-pediatrics program with a hug from her roommate, Tyler Winkelman. More than 50 percent of this year's graduating class will pursue primary care. (Middle) Fourth-year medical students Tam Huynh, Jimmy Haung, and Kusuma Nio eagerly wait to find out where they'll complete their residency training. (Lower) Associate dean for students and student learning Kathleen Watson, M.D., distributes match letters. (Photos: Kelly O'Connor)

During the celebration, which takes place simultaneously at medical schools across the country, graduating students learn the site of their medical residencies.

More than half of Minnesota’s 225 Medical School graduates will stay in Minnesota for their residencies, practicing in the Twin Cities, Mankato, Duluth, St. Cloud, and Rochester. Many will go into primary care — an area of need throughout the state. Even better news for Minnesota: all available family medicine residency slots were filled for the first time in years. That’s not the case in surrounding states.

Of the Medical School’s 54 graduating students who began their education at the Duluth campus, 52 percent were matched to family medicine residency programs. That compares with 34.5 percent last year and just 8 percent nationally. About 70 percent of Duluth graduates chose a primary care specialty.

Across the country, 15,588 graduating medical students were matched to residency programs.

Shortly after the Match Day celebration, the University received more positive news: U.S. News & World Report now ranks the Medical School 13th among public institutions. The school also climbed four spots, to 34th, among all medical schools in the United States.

“Our ability to continuously grow our medical school is a testament to our faculty, the quality of students enrolled, and the research that continues to make the University of Minnesota Medical School an attractive academic institution,” says Dean Aaron Friedman, M.D.

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