The third Friday in March is one of the most thrilling days in the journey of a medical student, as this is the day when students find out their Match results and where they will begin their career in medicine. Match 2022 for the School of Medicine Columbia (SOMC) was an overwhelming success, highlighted by the outstanding 98% match rate.
“We are so proud of our Class of 2022,” says Eric Williams, SOMC assistant dean for student services. “Every member who participated in the Match either has a residency or research position next year, and no one had to scramble afterwards for a spot. It is a testament to the hard work and determination of our students.”
Twenty-seven students will begin their careers in the state of South Carolina, with 15 of those placing residency appointments at Prisma Health Midlands. Other highlights include 16 students starting residency in internal medicine, and 10 students each going into emergency and family medicine.
For School of Medicine Columbia students, Match 2022 was spotlighted in the heart of downtown Columbia with an in-person, outdoor event held at Boyd Plaza at the Columbia Museum of Art for the students, their families and friends.
A fun, interactive reveal was planned for this year’s class, which featured a beautiful display of keychains leading the students to a location that displayed a lock box, with their “I Matched” envelope inside. Once the countdown clock ticked down its final seconds to noon, the students opened their boxes and envelopes, and exclamations of joy filled the air as the students learned their residency match appointments.
Cheyenne Hammond, who matched at the Carolinas Medical Center in psychiatry, described the anticipation of Match week leading up to the big reveal.
“I found out I matched on Monday, and it was nerves, excitement and anticipation this week. It has been a long journey these past four years, so I know that everyone was so happy to be at Match Day. Seeing everyone so happy and finding out where everyone has matched has been incredible.”
One of the unique stories from the SOMC on Match Day was that of husband-and-wife students Lauren and Ben Kubas. Ben is serving his country in the United States Army, and participated in the Military Match, which is held in December. Ben learned then that he would begin his career in a radiology residency at the San Antonio Military Medical Center. Lauren, however, is a civilian, and had to wait until March 18 for her residency appointment. Hoping to match in the same location as her husband, the couple was thrilled to find out Lauren matched at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, ensuring they could begin their careers together.
“It’s been a wild ride. We could not feel more blessed and happier to be together as a unit in San Antonio and have our dreams come true,” Ben said.
Weston McCowan, a first-generation college graduate who matched at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in internal medicine, credits the outstanding group of instructors at the SOMC for enhancing his time as a master’s and M.D. student, and he has great advice for future SOMC attendees.
“Lean on your classmates, bond with them. They are doing the same things that you are, and their goals are the same as yours.” He also says, “take the moment in because this might be the last time that you’ll be in that rotation, or the last time that you’ll have this sort of freedom or be a med student. Be sure to take time and enjoy the moments as they come, and think about them, and enjoy your friends and family.”
And on the Match Day ceremony itself, Hammond had high praise.
“Today was insane! Everyone did such an amazing job with the keys and the boxes. I know everyone felt so special with how it turned out. I don’t think it could have gone any better, really. I loved every minute of it.”