|University of South Alabama fourth-year medical students, from left, Thomas Holcombe, Micah Bucy and Gabrielle Hood recently matched in early match programs in the military.|
The majority of medical students go through the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP) to find out where they will be doing their residency training following graduation, but students who wish to match in the military participate in a specialty match program that takes place months before Match Day in March.
Micah Bucy, from Pensacola, Fla., has served in the Air Force Reserves since 2013. Following graduation he will become a captain on active duty.
Bucy matched at David Grant United States Air Force Medical Center in Fairfield, Calif., where he will complete his residency training in family medicine. “I have been impressed by the military's desire to make their physicians as well-rounded as possible so they can provide medical care in any area of the globe,” Bucy said. “Some of the more unique opportunities I will have while learning family medicine in the Air Force include credentialing in battlefield, acupuncture and practicing wilderness medicine at national parks.” Bucy found the military's Health Professions Scholarship Program to be a great opportunity to not only pay for his medical education, but also to serve his country by helping care for those who have served in the military and their families.
Gabrielle Hood, from Jasper, Ala., has always been passionate about interacting and building relationships with people. She has also been intrigued by the challenges that come along with studying medicine and science. “When I reflected on the two passions I have, I knew I wanted to practice medicine.” Hood said. She did not come from a military family, but when she heard of the different programs the military had to offer, she instantly knew that it was the route she wanted to take to start her medical career.
Hood matched at Naval Hospital Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, N.C., where she will complete a family medicine residency. With the help of great mentors and having a variety of resources within the military medical field, Hood said she has been able to achieve her dream profession. “It has been a great journey so far,” Hood said. “I cannot wait to start my career at Camp Lejeune taking care of our brave sailors, marines and their families.” Hood hopes to one day practice in a small, rural town similar to the town where she grew up shadowing physicians. Following graduation, Hood will be promoted to lieutenant.
Thomas Holcombe, from Dallas, Ga., will continue his family tradition of serving in the military. Holcombe has several family members who are currently active or have previously served in the military. “I have always wanted to join the military to do my part in the service of this nation,” Holcombe said.
Holcombe matched at Navy Medical Center Portsmouth in Portsmouth, Va., where he will complete a general surgery residency. He found that he has benefitted greatly from the opportunities the military has given him. “I have met many excellent men and women in my officer training as well as on my away rotations at the naval hospitals,” Holcombe said. “I am extremely proud to join the tradition of naval officers and the Medical Corps.” Following graduation, Holcombe will be promoted to lieutenant.
During Honors Convocation in May, Bucy, Hood and Holcombe will take the military oath of office and receive their new military rank, coinciding with completion of their medical degrees.
The remainder of the USA College of Medicine Class of 2016 will find out where they matched on Match Day, March 18, 2016. The event will take place at the Mobile Convention Center in downtown Mobile.