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Medical Student Opportunities

BBCH offers a variety of inpatient and outpatient opportunities for medical students. Some opportunities are limited to students from our partner medical schools, Tufts University School of Medicine and The University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine. Others, including acting internships and numerous pediatric subspecialty rotations, are open to students from any medical school in the United States who satisfy prerequisites.

The Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital is committed to excellent medical student education. The BBCH welcomes clerkship students from the Tufts University School of Medicine - Maine Medical Center program (TUSM-MMC or "Maine Track”), TUSM-Boston campus, and the University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine (UNECOM).

Students and residents team up in various clinical settings including the Inpatient Unit, the Newborn Nursery, and the Outpatient Pediatric Clinic. Both residents and students benefit from the close working relationships that develop during the clinical experiences. Residents find that teaching medical students helps solidify their own basic pediatric knowledge and allows them to reflect on their own advancement from medical student to pediatric specialist. Students feel comfortable seeking guidance from residents regarding medical diagnoses and management decisions, and can learn about the pathways into pediatric medicine after medical school.

The camaraderie that develops in these teams of trainees with different levels of experience is clearly evident and contributes to the collaborative learning environment that The BBCH is known for.

For more information, contact:

Shannon M. Bennett, DO
Clerkship Site Director
Phone: 207-662-3097
sbennett@mmc.org

General Inpatient Unit Acting Internship in Pediatrics

Title: Acting Internship in Pediatrics, MMC
Rotation Director, Christopher Motyl, DO
Time Commitment: Four weeks
Months Offered: All
Enrollment: 2 per four week block
Visiting Students: Available through VSLO

The inpatient unit of BBCH offers a rich inpatient pediatric acting intern experience. This experience includes exposure to a wide array of general pediatric and sub-specialty inpatients and includes a night team experience. We can accommodate up to two acting interns per academic block. For further course information go to General Inpatient Unit page.

Goals: To give the students the practical experience, in the inpatient setting, of managing general and sub-specialty pediatric hospitalized infants, children, and adolescents.

Format: Students will be assigned to one of two ward teams consisting of a PL-3/PL-2, a PL-1, and 1-2 Tufts or University of New England third year medical students. The acting intern will work-up patients with the team leader, discuss the assessment and plan with a senior resident and the attending, and manage the day-to-day care of the patients s/he is following.

Senior residents lead work rounds (including family-centered rounds) with supervision from attending physicians. Educational opportunities include: weekly departmental Grand Rounds, weekly resident and student core curriculum lectures, participation in pediatric high fidelity simulation, daily resident morning reports, and an opportunity to lead a student report.

AI's will work with the night team Sunday- Thursday for one week of the four week block with primary responsibility for half of the inpatient service. They will also be expected to work one weekend day (7A-5P) during the month.

Evaluation Methods: The evaluation form, sent by the student's school, will be used for evaluation. The final evaluation is a composite completed by the fourth year rotation director. Input is submitted from multiple pediatric attendings, residents and other colleagues identified by the student.

NICU Elective in Pediatrics

Title: Newborn Intensive Care at MMC
Rotation Director: Gina Trachimowicz, M.D.
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months Offered: All
Enrollment: One per month
Visiting Students: Available through MMC

Goals: To provide an introduction to the variety of complex or life-threatening conditions occurring in newborn infants and to learn the pathophysiology of these problems.

To allow supervised participation in the care of such infants and to gain an appreciation of the diagnostic and therapeutic methods used in the intensive care of premature and term infants. Included in the experience is the delivery room management of infants.

To participate in a supervised delivery room management of infants.

To learn how the care of an infant in the intensive care unit involves the coordinated care of many individuals and services in order to treat the patient and support the family.

Format: The student will function as an acting intern with supervision by the neonatologist. The student will have specific patient assignments and will be responsible for patient care in a manner similar to that expected of a first-year pediatric resident. Specific patient assignments may allow the student to involve other pediatric subspecialists such as cardiology, endocrinology, genetics, and neurology. Students usually care for three to four patients at a time. The student will be assigned night and weekend call and an attending neonatologist will be present for teaching and supervision at all times, day and night.

Evaluation Methods: Evaluations will be done by the faculty. The elective form as dictated by the medical student's program will be used for evaluation. The student has the opportunity to review this evaluation at the end of the elective with the rotation director.

How to Apply

Visiting student applicants should apply online through the Visiting Student Learning Opportunities (VSLO). Applications are processed upon receipt of a complete application. Details on application requirements, including filling out a supplemental MMC application, are noted on VSAS. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. You will be notified via email whether or not your application has been approved. If you do not receive a response from VSLO, please contact the Pediatric Medical Student Coordinator, Michelle Freitas, at freitm@mmc.org or 207-662-6930.

 

Allergy and Immunology Elective

Title: Allergy and Immunology Senior Elective
Rotation Director: Barbara Chilmonczyk, M.D
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One student/month
Visiting Students: Yes

This one month training experience provides the opportunity for a senior medical student to gain in depth experience with the diagnosis and management of asthma, allergy and immunodeficiency. Outpatient clinical encounters are complemented by reading, project work and inpatient consultation based on the student's interests.

Goals: Be able to identify, diagnose and begin treatment of patients with asthma. Be able to identify and begin treatment of patients with allergic disease. Be able to recognize individuals with possible primary immunodeficiency diseases and begin the diagnostic evaluation. Understand the role of the primary care practitioner in prevention related to allergy and immunology.

Format: The format is learner focused, and follows a calendar of activities specifically designed to give the student a broad exposure to the specialty of allergy and immunology. The student curriculum includes a self-learning module. Individual projects are available depending on interest. The majority of the experience occurs in the outpatient setting at the offices of Allergy and Asthma Associates in Portland, Maine.

Evaluation Methods:

  • Promptness and appropriate demeanor
  • Ability to take a history and perform a physical exam appropriate to allergy/immunology
  • Ability to interpret basic allergy / pulmonary tests, and demonstrate use of devices common to the management of patients with asthma / allergy
  • The organization and content of the hospital consultation
  • Evidence of case based reading
  • Specific competence acquisition will be tested in: the classification and treatment of asthma; the differential diagnosis of asthma and allergic rhinitis; clinical and laboratory tests in allergy/immunology; food allergy; the presentation of immunodeficiency. *4th year medical student applicants are required to have previous inpatient and outpatient pediatric experience.

Cardiology Elective

Title: MMP Congenital Heart
Rotation Director: Shari Wellen, MD
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One student
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: This four week elective will expose the student to a wide array of common cardiovascular complaints and congenital heart disease. The student will develop the skills to perform a thorough cardiovascular examination. She/he will also develop a deeper understanding of the anatomy and physiology of structural heart defects along with acquired heart defects.

Format: The student will be an integral part of the pediatric cardiology team—rounding with the team each morning on inpatients, including patient’s post-operative from heart surgery. The student will also see outpatients five days a week in the pediatric cardiology office where one on one teaching will occur. The student will also participate in weekly multidisciplinary meetings with the cardiology, PICU and CT surgical teams.

Evaluation Methods: The evaluation will be a collective evaluation based upon performance, according to the goals and expectations outlined at the start of the rotation. Senior Selective evaluation form.

Child Abuse and Neglect Elective

Title: Child Abuse at MMC and The Spurwink Center for Safe and Healthy Families
Rotation Director: Amanda Brownell, MD
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One Student
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: Knowledge of the complex multi-system issues of child abuse, including physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, and neglect.

An understanding of the role of the primary practitioner in assessment, reporting, referral, and case management.

Interviewing techniques, multidisciplinary assessment, collaboration techniques, and general examination techniques.

Format: Student will observe the child abuse medical clinic two to three days a week at The Spurwink Center for Safe and Healthy Families and also observe forensic social worker interviews, psychological evaluations and assessments. Student will participate in multidisciplinary team discussions and inpatient consults, observe court testimony and present a topic of interest to staff.

Evaluation Methods: Senior Selective Evaluation form.

Endocrinology Elective

Title: Pediatric Endocrinology at MMC
Rotation Director: Jonathan Swartz, MD, MMSc
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One student/month
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: This one-month elective is designed to provide students with a basic understanding of normal endocrine physiology, as well as provide an inpatient and outpatient clinical experience to educate students on how to diagnose and treat children and adolescents with endocrine disorders.

Format: Eight (half day) general endocrine clinics/week. Initially, students will observe the Attendings’ interaction with the patients and their families; however, by the end of the elective students will be able to interview and examine patients independently and then present to the attending.

Two (half-day) diabetes clinic/week; same format as general endocrine clinic. Participation in inpatient consults and admissions.

Evaluation Methods:

  • Ability to take and present a history
  • Willingness to read on specific patient-related problems and subsequent formulation of a differential diagnosis and diagnostic and therapeutic plan
  • Acquisition of basic knowledge of endocrinology
  • Performance in the above areas will be evaluated using the standard Senior Selective evaluation form

Gastroenterology Elective

Title: Pediatric Gastroenterology at MMC
Rotation Director: Julia Fritz, MD
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One student
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: This one month elective provides the opportunity for residents and medical students to develop skills and medical knowledge necessary for a provider involved in the care of pediatric patients with gastrointestinal illnesses. Individual rotators will have the opportunity to personalize their rotation to meet their personal goals while obtaining a strong foundation in pediatric GI.

Format: In outpatient clinics rotators will be expected to both shadow preceptors and evaluate patients independently following which they will be expected to provide accurate and thorough data as well as an assessment and plan reflective of their level of training to the attending physician. During time on the inpatient service, rotators are expected to be present during rounds and to be available to assist in seeing new consults. Documentation requirements will vary by rotator but is expected to be timely and reflective of level of training. Rotators will spend a portion of their time observing procedures including pediatric endoscopy, colonoscopy, and ano-rectal manometry. When possible, rotators will have the opportunity to shadow other members of the GI team including social work and dietician and attend multidisciplinary clinic (Aerodigestive Clinic, Cystic Fibrosis Clinic, Spina Bifida Clinic). Expectations for these educational opportunities are the same as other clinical experiences.

Evaluation: The evaluation will be based on the performance, according to the goals and expectations outlined above. The standard senior elective evaluation form will be used.

Genetics Elective

Title: Medical Genetics
Rotation Director: Wendy Smith, M.D
Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One student
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: The student will demonstrate an increase in knowledge and awareness of the importance of the contribution of genetic factors to human health and disease; and the practice of clinical genetics, dysmorphology and teratology. She/he will develop skills for evaluation of dysmorphic individuals, or those with multiple malformations, analysis of family pedigree information and provision of genetic counseling.

Format: Students participating in this one month elective will be involved in the evaluation, testing, counseling and education of patients and families with known or suspected Genetic diagnoses. Patient encounters will occur during daily Medical Genetics out-patient clinics at the Maine Pediatric Specialty Group, monthly Multi-specialty clinics (Cleft Lip and Palate Clinic, the Metabolism Program for inborn errors of metabolism, Cystic Fibrosis Clinic, Hemophilia Clinic) and during in-patient consultations at BBCH/MMC. Students may also have the opportunity to participate in prenatal counseling encounters with the Division of Maternal Fetal Medicine. Teaching emphasis for medical students will be on the recognition of the role that Genetics plays in various diseases/diagnoses and medical care. The ethical, legal and social implications of Genetics will also be discussed in the context of patient evaluations. Reading materials and didactic lectures covering a variety of topics in Genetics will be provided. Students are expected to prepare prior to specific patient encounters, and will play an active role in clinical evaluations. Throughout the month, students will be asked to compose informative family-friendly letters reviewing clinic discussions and diagnosis information for selected patients encountered.

Evaluation Method: Senior Selective Evaluation form

Hematology/Oncology Elective

Title: Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at MMC
Rotation Director: Sei Sze, MD
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One student
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: To expose students to a basic fund of knowledge that will enable them to successfully diagnose common pediatric hematologic and oncologic diseases and to provide an understanding of the pathophysiology of these diseases.

Format: The student will attend regularly scheduled clinics at the Maine Children's Cancer Program and will evaluate new hematology and oncology consults under the direct supervision of the clinic attending. In addition, the student may participate in inpatient rounds, consultations, and family meetings with the inpatient attending. Students will be encouraged to participate in multidisciplinary tumor board and weekly clinical update meetings. There may also be procedural opportunities during the month, with lumbar punctures and bone marrow biopsies. Students will be expected to prepare a presentation on a peds heme/onc topic of interest, to be delivered to the health care team during the final week of the elective.

Evaluation Methods: Students will be evaluated based on their professional attitude, level of enthusiasm, interest, curiosity, and end of rotation presentation. Standard senior selective evaluation form will be used.

Infectious Disease Elective

Title: Pediatric Infectious Diseases at MMC
Rotation Director: Carol McCarthy, M.D.
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: Maximum of one student/month
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: The focus of this elective is to learn to evaluate and manage infectious diseases in children. Participants are encouraged to use the literature to learn about infectious disease problems, laboratory evaluation and rational use of antimicrobial agents.

Format: Students will participate in the evaluation of inpatient consults. Several sessions/week patients are also seen in an outpatient clinic. A combined pediatric/adult infectious disease conference is held weekly at MMC. Students are encouraged to assist in the presentation of instructive pediatric cases. There is opportunity to spend time in the microbiology laboratory to gain familiarity with laboratory procedures.

Evaluation Methods: The evaluation will be based on the performance, according to the goals as outlined above. The standard senior elective evaluation form will be used.

Nephrology Elective

Title: Pediatric Nephrology
Rotation Director: Oliver Fremont, M.D
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One Student
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: The Pediatric Nephrology Division of Maine Medical Center cares for children throughout Maine and New Hampshire. The division offers a rotation for students, residents and fellows at Maine Medical Center. The goal of the rotation is to provide the student, residents and fellows an opportunity to learn about renal disease and care of chronic illness in children, adolescents and young adults.

Format: The rotation in Pediatric Nephrology is structured in the following way:

Monday: Hospital rounds, Outpatient Clinic all day.
Tuesday: Hospital rounds, Renal transplant and Chronic Kidney Disease Clinic in AM; Stone Clinic in PM.
Wednesday: Hospital Rounds; Rounds at Casco Bay Dialysis Facility; Outpatient Clinic all day.
Thursday: Grand Rounds and Resident Lectures in AM; Outpatient Clinic in PM.
Friday: Hospital Rounds; Outpatient Clinic all day.

Along with the above, intermittent meetings and lectures are available to the students. The student should be prepared to evaluate all new consults to the service.

Evaluation Methods: A written evaluation will be done using the form provided by the medical school. There will also be informal evaluations done throughout the month to update the student on their progress.

Neurology Elective

Title: Pediatric Neurology at MMC
Rotation Director: Tom Reynolds, D.O.
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One student
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: The student will gain a basic understanding in pediatric neurology. The emphasis will be on developing skills in the neurological examination, understanding normal and abnormal development, utilizing principals of localization to guide differential diagnosis, and learning basic management strategies for various neurological disorders. Students will be introduced to seizures/epilepsy, headache, tic disorders/Tourette syndrome/ADHD, autism, intellectual disability, neurovascular disease, neuroimmunology, cerebral palsy, spina bifida, and neuromuscular disorders/muscular dystrophy.

Format: The student will participate in both inpatient consultation and management of patients as well as outpatient clinic as well. The bulk of students’ time will be spent in the either setting, evaluating acute and chronic neurological problems. Students should expect to see patients in the ED, general inpatient pediatric unit, and both the NICU and PICU. Students will attend multi-disciplinary clinics in the care of cerebral palsy, spina bifida, and muscular dystrophy.
Students’ required reading is consists of multiple books available through both the neurology office, the pediatric medical education office, as well as through review of both primary literature and other on-line resources as available through the Maine Medical Center Library. There will be both formal and informal didactic sessions during the rotation in both pediatric and adult neurology topcis as well as options to participate in general pediatric educational sessions.
Students will be required to complete an educational project on a pediatric neurology topic during their rotation. This can be directed either at patient/family education or at educating other members of the health care team on a neurology topic.

Evaluation Methods:
Senior Elective Evaluation Form

Pediatric Intensive Care Elective

Title: Pediatric Intensive Care Senior Elective
Rotation Director: Kristine Pleacher, MD
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: 1 student per block
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: The clinical elective is designed as an opportunity for the 4th year medical student to work with a senior resident and PICU Attending to learn assessment, evaluation and therapies needed to care for critically ill children. Learning objectives will be met by participation in clinical rounds, bedside and classroom teaching sessions, direct and observational patient care including the opportunity to participate in pediatric critical care transport, and individual literature review.

Format: The student will be an integral part of the pediatric critical care team – rounding with the team daily Monday-Friday, admitting new patients, and participating in team meetings. There may be an opportunity to go on a pediatric critical care transport if the student is interested. Students will be expected to participate in the daily PICU educational sessions and to give a brief presentation on a topic of their choosing.

Evaluation Methods: Performance on the above areas will be evaluated by the Senior Selective Evaluation form. The final evaluation is a composite completed by the rotation director.

Pulmonology Elective

Title: Pediatric Pulmonary at MMC
Rotation Director: Anne Coates, M.D.
Time Commitment: 4 weeks
Months offered: Based on availability
Enrollment: One student
Visiting Students: Yes

Goals: This 4 week elective provides the opportunity for students to develop skills in the field of pediatric pulmonology. The student will see a range of inpatient and outpatient pathophysiology with an emphasis on asthma, cystic fibrosis, bronchopulmonary dysplasia, airway anomalies, obstructive sleep apnea and evaluation of the child with chronic cough, wheezing or stridor.

Format: The student will be an integral part of the team, rounding on inpatients in the morning then attending pulmonary clinic, which occurs morning and afternoon on a daily basis at Maine Pediatric Specialty Group. A notable portion of the clinic visits will be via telehealth. Cystic Fibrosis clinic is held weekly with a multi-disciplinary team. Opportunities to participate in other multi-disciplinary clinics such as Aerodigestive clinic are available too. The student may attend flexible bronchoscopies and schedule time in the pulmonary function laboratory to learn how pulmonary functions are performed. There will be time set aside for reading from both the online curriculum and packet provided on salient topics in pediatric pulmonology. The student should present a short presentation on a pulmonary topic of their choice at the end of the elective.

Evaluation Methods: A written evaluation will be done using the form provided by the medical school.

How to Apply

Visiting student applicants should apply online through the Visiting Student Learning Opportunities (VSLO). Applications are processed upon receipt of a complete application. Details on application requirements, including filling out a supplemental MMC application, are noted on VSAS. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed. You will be notified via email whether or not your application has been approved. If you do not receive a response from VSLO, please contact the Pediatric Medical Student Coordinator, Michelle Freitas, at freitm@mmc.org or 207-662-6930.

Maine Medical Center does not offer student housing and it cannot be guaranteed. Please indicate on your application if housing is needed. Please email MMC Department of Medical Education mededuc@mmc.org or call 207-662-7060 to inquire about possible housing options in the Portland area.