Training Overview

Our program is focused on training you as a:

  • Compassionate, caring, confident, competent internist who is able to practice in a variety of settings
  • Skilled educator
  • Reflective practitioner
  • Leader, able to lead teams as well as quality improvement efforts
  • Academic contributor

Clinical Training

  • Innovative education program – our program was one of the first programs to embrace milestone-based training in our learner-manager-teacher model. We are proud that our residents move through this transition and own their advancement as academic clinician educators by mapping their progress and building their portfolios as they go!
  • Innovative structures for training – our tandem block schedule is “one of a kind” and was uniquely designed to optimize the balance between training in the inpatient and ambulatory setting. Our residents have also found that it helps them to optimize their work life balancing – and better prepares them for their ultimate jobs. In addition, our program embraces new modes of education and encourages creativity in our faculty and our residents.
  • State of the art medical facilities across locations of VCUHealth and McGuire VA Medical Center, in which we serve an incredibly diverse patient population, who present with a widespread spectrum of disease and illness. If you can read about it, you will likely see it! - and more!
  • Partnering to further innovation in the delivery of clinical care – from our recent work with structured interdisciplinary rounding to pilots in unit-based care, we partner closely with our healthcare team members to model cutting edge care.

Resident as Educator

All of our residents participate in a strong curriculum aimed to train them as effective teachers in the clinical and non-clinical arenas. Each resident participates in a two-day off-site teaching retreat during their transition from manager to teacher/leader phase of training. Residents continue to grow as educators through participation in:

  • Teaching seminars in teacher/leader phase
  • Teaching and facilitating conferences – at least two during teacher/leader phase with structured observation and feedback on teaching skills
  • Focused evaluations targeted to give feedback on teaching/leadership behaviors from learners (students and interns) – with formal review by core advisor
  • Completion of on-line learning modules focused at advanced teaching skills (new 2015-2016)
  • Opportunity for other teaching – simulation, procedures, cardiac exam, students and more

Reflective Practitioner

All residents develop their skills in reflecting on, in, and for action. Our program believes that the practice of reflecting builds resilience, thus decreasing burnout, fatigue, anxiety and stress. We believe in supporting the development of the resilient physician. All residents participate in the following programs:

  • Four training sessions in the first year in “reflection and resilience”
  • Creation of a digital story, an innovative, high-tech approach to bringing a story or experience to life
  • Blogging (new 2015-2016)
  • Balint groups (new 2015-2016)
  • Regular self-assessment
  • Critical incident reviews


Our residents graduate from our program prepared to lead teams and quality efforts. This occurs through participation in:

  • Formal leadership training sessions, including formal training in teamwork, communication, shared mental models
  • Teacher/leader leadership training “book club” – summer of third year
  • Serving in role of team leader – with focused feedback on role
  • Completion of IHI modules in leadership and quality
  • Quality Improvement rotation – required of all teacher/leader residents
  • Participation in quality improvement initiatives

Academic Contributor

Our residents are encouraged take seriously their commitment of contributions to the science and science of education in medicine. Each resident participates in a 10-week course designed to introduce them to key concepts in and resources for research. Each resident designs a study, identifies a mentor, and is allowed 1-2 rotations for research activities. Residents are encouraged to contribute in ways that are meaningful to them as individuals, which may mean clinical, translational or basic science research projects, but may also mean curriculum development, review papers, medical education research, essay writing and more.


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