When I attended my first resident town hall meeting, I didn’t know what to expect. As a medical student at Washington University, I had never experienced a resident forum. While it was interesting to see the constructive dialogue between the program leadership and the residents, I was more curious to see what would result from the meeting. A few weeks later, our program director sent an e-mail stating that some of the resident suggestions had already been addressed by the education committee. The experience reaffirmed that the Washington University residency program is not top-tier simply because it has a large variety of surgical cases or has internationally renowned researchers; it is among the best because it adapts to the ever-changing needs and expectations of its residents.
As I have progressed through my intern year, I have been pleasantly surprised by how much time I have spent in the department itself. Through rotations in the intensive care units, simulation center, pre-operative clinic and operating room, I have gotten to know many of the residents and attendings. While we may put a lot of effort into our work, our program director encourages balance in our lives.
I try to enjoy St. Louis as much as I possibly can; whether it’s trying new restaurants, going for a run in Forest Park, or attending the symphony, St. Louis has more than enough to keep me entertained. However, there is one significant downside to living in St. Louis: it’s hard to be a Cubs fan in Cardinals’ country.
Tim Tran, MD
BA, Washington University in St. Louis 
MD, Washington University in St. Louis