The excitement was palpable on the campus of the UT Health Medical School.
All of the 240 students’ names are called out to come and pick up a white envelope that contains a short letter revealing the hospital where each individual student will spend the next three to seven years.
Sabrina Browne grew up in Dallas and her family still lives there, so the UT Southwestern Medical Center is her first choice.
“I’m just really excited to find out where I’m going. I think anywhere that I ranked on my list, I’d be happy to go, so it’s just… I’m ready to find out where I’m going to spend the next five years of my life.”
Browne interviewed at six different hospitals across the country and ranked them according to preference. The hospitals do the same with the students, and applicants and programs are then matched through a national computerized process. The residency program is required before aspiring physicians can practice medicine.
Dr. LaTanya Love, assistant dean of admissions at the University of Texas Health Science Center Medical School, says she can relate to the students’ excitement.
She got her first choice 13 years ago when she was a medical student in Galveston and was matched with UT Health for her residency.
“And this is a tradition that we look forward to every year because it’s just really exciting because this is the culmination of all their hard work, it’s paying off. Our students get really top residencies, and as we mentioned they’re going all over the country in some of our best programs, so we’re very excited.”
Sabrina Browne and family
Browne doesn’t try to hide her excitement as she’s holding that envelope but is having to wait until everyone’s ready to open them.
“It’s tempting, it really is. I’m trying to look and see if I can read through but this is a think envelope. They thought of everything, they got the thickest envelopes.”
And then the long-awaited moment is here.
“You can open it.”
“Yeah, open it.”
“Oh, so excited, oh my goodness, oh my gosh!”
“She’ll be home!”
Now all Browne has to do is graduate. Once that formality is behind her, she’ll start her psychiatry residency in late June.
She says she wants to do her part in helping Texas move up from its current 49th place in the number of mental health care providers per capita.