Greetings from Guwahati, India!

by Jennie Cheesborough

Friends and Colleagues,

I want to introduce myself briefly. I am a PGY-6 resident in the integrated Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery program at Northwestern University in Chicago. I am also honored to be your resident representative and board member to ACAPS (the American Council of Academic Plastic Surgeons). I am definitely still figuring out what this means since this is a new position, but so far it has been eye opening! The most important message I want to share with you all from my experience at the Winter ACAPS meeting is this: the faculty and staff at our residency programs work incredibly hard to ensure each of us receives excellent training. There are countless conference calls, committee meetings, and board meetings that occur after business hours. I had no idea how much time and effort they spend behind the scenes brainstorming ways to improve our education.

I would like to share with you a few of the ongoing ACAPS projects.

Drs. Kasten, Nguyen, Bueno, Saadeh, Barker, and Krajewski are creating “Intern Boot Camp 1.0” to be held this fall (2015). Other surgical specialties, such as neurosurgery, have coordinated regional or national weekend boot camp training experiences for their interns. ACAPS’ plan is to invite all first year plastic and reconstructive surgery residents and fellows to a weekend of intensive lectures and simulations designed to prepare them to become outstanding trainees from the get go. Faculty will give lectures covering the breadth of plastic surgery topics and this will be supplemented with hands on simulation skills labs. This will not only serve to jump start the residents’ education in plastics, but will also serve to strengthen the national plastic surgery community by allowing an entire class of residents the opportunity to build friendships.

Dr. Peter Taub and Dr. Lisa David chair the Resident Cosmetic Clinic Committee. They have created the framework for a new section of the ACAPS website dedicated to resources for the Chief Resident Cosmetic Clinic. They have created a procedure-specific “best-of” list of articles and videos. Additionally, they have compiled useful tools such as consent forms, photographic standards, and cost standards. With this standardized information available, the hope is that we can provide more reliable results for our patients. I look forward to having this resource available online soon linked to both ACAPS and PSEN.

The Fifth Module is coming. Drs. Weber, Girroto, Hultman and Janis have spearheaded the endeavor to create a fifth “core surgical principles” section to our annual in-service examination. Coming in March 2016, there will be 50 additional questions on each exam (250 total). The new section will be designed to test our medical knowledge, patient care, and practice of surgery. This is intended to better represent the questions we will all see on the boards.


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