"Development of an Academic Surgical Student Program for Enhancing Student-Faculty Engagement"

J Surg Educ. May-Jun 2019;76(3):604-606. doi: 10.1016/j.jsurg.2018.11.007. Epub 2018 Dec 15.


Objective: We describe an innovative medical student surgery interest group and its influence on mentorship and career exploration.

Design: SCRUBS, created to promote interest in academic surgery, is student-led, with continual surgical faculty and resident involvement. Its 3-component programming focuses on clinical skills, research, and mentorship opportunities for medical students to get involved in academic surgery early in medical education.

Setting: The University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, MI.

Participants: First through fourth year medical students, surgery residents, and attending surgeons.

Results: SCRUBS is a multifaceted student organization providing longitudinal exposure to various aspects of surgery and academic medicine. The group grew annually from 2010 to 2014, with students and faculty expressing positive feedback. Over the time period reviewed, we had a greater percentage of students applying into surgical specialties compared with the national average (16.8 vs 12% in 2014). The group supported and facilitated mentorship, clinical skills development, and research opportunities for interested students.

Conclusions: This innovative surgery interest group has been well received by students and surgeons, and our institution has seen above-average interest in surgical careers. Early, preclinical mentorship and exposure provided by SCRUBS may contribute to this higher surgical interest.

Keywords: Medical education; Mentorship; Recruitment; Surgery.

MeSH terms

  • Biomedical Research
  • Career Choice*
  • Clinical Competence
  • Curriculum
  • Education, Medical / methods*
  • Faculty, Medical
  • Humans
  • Mentors*
  • Michigan
  • Organizational Innovation
  • Specialties, Surgical / education*