Q&A: How to Apply

When should I apply?

a. Applications are accepted via ERAS (www.aamc.org/eras) September 1 – October 31
b. We do not offer observerships.

What do I need?

a. Medical school and other relevant transcripts
b. Dean’s letter
c. 3 letters of reference. Two should be from clinicians, at least one from a psychiatrist.
d. Personal Statement

What are your requirements?

a. Completion of medical school or other residency within the last 5 years
b. USMLE score or COMLEX score
c. US citizenship, permanent resident status, or J1 Visa

What do you seek in a candidate?

a. Academically sound, driven physicians who will become the next generation of pioneers in psychiatry
b. Excellent communication skills
c. Ability to articulate why HSS would be a good match for your career
d. Applicants from medically-underserved backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

When are interviews conducted?

November through January

How many positions do you offer for PGY I?

8 residents per PGY class

Who can I contact for further questions?

Contact Information:
Program Coordinator: Ponniece Champlin. (Ponniece.champlin@va.gov)
Training Director: Chandlee C. Dickey, M.D. (Chandlee.Dickey@va.gov)
Associate Training Director: Barbara Cannon, M.D. (Barbara.Cannon@va.gov)

Why Choose HSS?

From Our Residents


AdamsPeter Adams, MD
“When I interviewed at Harvard South Shore I was impressed by the positive atmosphere and attitudes of the training directors and residents. Everyone was very proud of the program and continually striving to make it better. Over the past two years I have encountered an administration and faculty who are not only open to resident input in making major program decisions, but actively seeking out their suggestions. Also, the training directors have been extremely receptive to any concerns put forth by the residents. I have witnessed numerous changes to policies made in response to resident feedback. Joining Harvard South Shore is an opportunity to join a program that is thriving in clinical, research, and academic opportunities, where you are given an active role in making the program even better.”
FallsBrian Falls, MD
“The program is clinically solid and well-rounded. It fosters a thorough understanding of thebiopsychosocial model of psychiatry. The VA setting allows for a more patient-centered approach, as we are not pressured by managed care to discharge patients before we are comfortable doing so. Though our sponsoring institution is the VA, we rotate at many other Harvard affiliates, allowing us to see a broad patient population. We have a full day per week set aside for didactics. The availability of clinical and research opportunities, especially in terms of electives, seems limitless within the Harvard system. The other residents are awesome. Our seniors are exceedingly helpful and they are very fair with the on-call workload. I have made friendships and connections here that I intend to carry on into my career. In addition, my colleagues are very, well… collegial! I have never had a problem switching calls when I need to. Best of all, I have found the faculty to be very knowledgeable, accessible, and fun to work with. The location is also great. I had never lived in the Northeast before and it has pleasantly surprised me. Skiing (or snowboarding in my case!) is fairly close, as well as the beach. Boston is very rich intellectually, historically, and culturally. And don’t forget, Providence is also nearby!”
KhanIlea Khan, MD
“Although I love many things about our program, there is one in particular that is unique and really improves our quality of life as residents: the vacation policy. Residents can divide their twenty days of vacation how they like, rather than having to take them in blocks. I found that scheduling long weekends helped me punctuate a busy year.”
KuoSophia Kuo, MD
“As someone who grew up in a multicultural city, who has studied in several countries, and who hopes to work with a diverse patient population, I wanted a residency program that reflected the perspectives and values of our global community. I loved that Harvard South Shore provides residents with the opportunity to work with and learn from colleagues from different backgrounds, many of whom speak more than two languages, and all of whom have rich experiences to share. I was very impressed with how happy, well-rounded, accomplished, and humble the residents I met during my interview are. It was a hard decision to delay my return to the West Coast for another few years, in favor of spending my training with the fascinating, fabulous, and fun people at South Shore, but I’m very glad I did. I love that I look forward to seeing my friends during Wednesday Seminar, and that the interdisciplinary team laughs during inpatient rounds. I also appreciate how South Shore residents have full lives outside of residency (admittedly, some fill their lives with research, but that counts, too). Lastly, the teaching is extraordinary. Where else do you get one-on-one lectures by renowned geriatricians and neuropsychologists, several times a week, on a first-year geriatrics rotation?”
MonjolaManjola Ujkaj,MD, PhD
“When I interviewed here I heard about the incredible opportunity of having an active part on the continuing process of improving the clinical and scientific curriculum of the program while taking on leadership positions in the different projects. Furthermore, for someone like me, interested in teaching and research, I was amazed to hear about — and later on take advantage of — the numerous opportunities to teach, not only Harvard Medical students, but also more junior residents and interns. And last, but not least, we are a lot of fun to hang out with!”
FawadUjala Fawad,MD
“I think Harvard South Shore is a great place to train, as here we learn to be an expert in both the clinical as well as research aspects of psychiatry. We have leaders in psychopathology, psychopharmacology,biopsychosocial approach, research, as well as psychotherapy who are dedicated to teaching residents. We get to rotate not only in the VA system, but also in the major hospitals in the greater Boston area, which includes the public sector as well as state run hospitals. We have a good mix of residents coming from the best medical schools in the US and from all around the world. We are a culturally rich community and we really care for each other here. The transition from being a medical student to an intern is a smooth one. The salary is great and vacations are flexible. All in all, I would say that coming to HSS is one of the best decisions I have made in my career.”
AbejuelaHarmony Abejuela, MD
“During my interview and even after my interview, I really believed and felt the sincerity in Dr. Bauer’s, Dr. Festin’s, and Dr. Dickey’s personal interests in me, my residency training, and in having me become a part of the HSS family. Dr. Bauer and the rest of the faculty and staff have always been nice, accommodating, and approachable, and have made me feel very welcomed from the beginning. I liked the myriad research opportunities and resources available, as well as the diversity in the backgrounds of both the patients and residents. After talking to a few residents, I learned that at HSS, residents’ education is highly valued and prioritized. Interns do not hold the on-call pager for the first year, and are given little scutwork, if any, to help transition them into residency. I like that there is always an attending or a resident in-house to help with call nights, so that interns do not feel alone. The call schedule, flexible vacation scheduling, and dedicated didactic Wednesdays are also among the reasons why residents here are very happy. Also, I like that faculty and staff openly welcome and listen to their input on ways to continue improving the program. These are just a few of the reasons for why I truly believe HSS is a great place to train!”
ScottDuMetz Scott, MD
“Harvard South Shore stood out amongst all of the programs I visited. The residents were extremely friendly and approachable. Their comments matched my overall positive impression of the program. I saw a very balanced program, rich in psychotherapy, research, and other modalities. This program fosters the development of highly competent and skilled clinicians, which was key in my choice of Harvard South Shore.”

Our Diversity Vision

HSS actively seeks a cohort of residents that combines US graduates and graduates from abroad, including both allopathic and osteopathic medical graduates. We especially welcome residency application by candidates from traditionally health-underserved minority groups in the US.

In particular, we seek residents from within and beyond the US with leadership potential who will be able to respond to the emerging needs of the increasingly diverse US population, and who will become global leaders in mental health.

Residents who do best at HSS are those who thrive in a richly diverse environment, and who learn well from differences as well as similarities: Hybrid vigor is a well-established biological principle.

Succinctly stated: Where you came from is less important than where you’re going!

Diversity & Harvard Medical School

The diversity commitment at HSS is embedded in the diversity commitment of Harvard Medical School throughout the academic continuum. An important resource for continued development is the HMS Minority Faculty Development Program (MFDP).

In May of 1990, the Harvard Medical School Faculty Council Established the MFDP.

MFDP is designed to support the career development of junior faculty and to address crucial pipeline issues. This includes:

  • Increasing the pool of minority students interested in careers in science and medicine;
  • Promoting medical students, graduate students, and fellows to develop the needed skills for success in the academic arena; and
  • Advancing the career development of junior faculty. MFDP is a part of the Harvard Medical School Office for Diversity and Community Partners