Program Overview
Program Overview | Curriculum Academic Sessions



The majority of our trainees operate as the sole resident on the cardiac surgery service. This allows even junior residents the opportunity to take a leadership role in patient management. In addition, our trainees rotate though the CICU with direct interaction with the attending intensivist 24 hours per day. This allows for maximum exposure to and supervision of highly complex patients.Post-graduate trainees are expected to see and review all patients pre-operatively, to do rounds on patients in the ICU, and to manage the in-patient ward with direct supervision from the attending surgeon and/or intensivist.

Service to Education Ratio

While the residents are expected to perform as leaders of the clinical team when they are on service, the program does not rely solely on trainees for in-patient ward functionality. The residents are complemented by several clinical associates, who assist with patient management to ensure that the trainee can attend or participate in the OR and can attend educational sessions or conduct research. Residents have an academic half-day weekly in which they are completely freed from clinical duty. During this time, a structured seminar series is provided, as is time to pursue individual research interests.In addition, the cardiac surgery program has weekly grand rounds in which the resident trainees are expected to present topics relevant to cardiac surgery. The service also has regular separate and joint—with other disciplines in the cardiac science program—journal club meetings, as well as weekly multi-disciplinary cardiac catheterization rounds.

Operative Exposure

As there are few residents on service at any one time, the trainee has the opportunity to choose which OR to attend, which allows for maximum exposure to complex and rare cases.


In-training evaluation reports, reflecting the rotation specific goals and objectives, follow every rotation and are read and signed by the resident. The American Board of Thoracic Surgery In-Training Examination is written in the Spring of each of the last three years. Practice oral exams are given with progressive frequency during the last year. Residents' performance and progress are monitored closely by the program director and the residency program committee with regular feedback to the residents.

Residents are invited to provide written evaluations of the teaching performance of the individual faculty members, to the extent that is possible, in an anonymous manner.

Click below to experience the Cardiac Surgery training program at UM: