Education/Mentorship Committee

Mentorship Program

Goal: Establish a formal mentorship program for new general surgery residency program directors through the Association of Program Directors in Surgery.

Need:  Expected qualifications and experience among new surgery residency program directors are detailed and assume significant investment in both time and energy to accomplish the task.  New surgery programs are approved annually and program director attrition is difficult to estimate but does exist.  It is estimated that an additional 20-30 osteopathic programs are currently under consideration for accreditation by the ACGME.  The ACGME – Surgery RRC common program requirements state that program directors in surgery should serve in their role for 6 years.   New program directors or those adapting to ACGME accreditation standards would appear to be in a vulnerable position whereby formal mentorship opportunities with experienced program directors may be of benefit.  There are no current formal mentorship programs for new general surgery residency program directors.

Organization – Task Force Structure

  1. Chairperson – Jonathan Dort, MD
  2. Past President- APDS : Adviser: David Harrington, MD, Brown Univ
  3. Two representatives (mix of independent and university)
    1. Neil Seymour, MD – Baystate
    2. Kyla Terhune, MD – Vanderbilt


  1. Notification from the task force to new program directors to seek applicants
    1. Utilization of list serve
    2. Communication with Surgery RRC regarding new program applications
    3. Review of APDS Board of Director spring meeting minutes regarding new program certifications
    4. Utilization of previous 2-3 years of APDS New Program Director Workshop attendees
  2. Notification from the task force to program directors regarding the program vs focused selection of known entities.
  3. First year pilot with goal of 15 mentees
  4. Assign one program director to 1 mentee
  5. Expectations:
    1. “Pre” – APDS spring meeting phone call
    2. Formal meeting at the APDS
    3. “Post” APDS phone call/availability
    4. Formal meeting at the ACS – or phone call if not in attendance
    5. Consideration of “site” reviews by mentor to mentee or vice versa
    6. Formal written report submitted by mentor to task force following spring meeting and in follow up after the ACS.
    7. Formal written report by mentee following the ACS (or at completion of the agreement)
  6. Possible luncheon at APDS for all mentees and mentors with introduction of the process and expectations of all engaged

Program Director Mentor

Mentors will be selected by the Task Force.  It is recognized that some degree of vetting should occur in the selection process and that encouraging participation by a diverse field of directors is important.  Furthermore, geographic distribution should be considered to facilitate opportunities for the possibility of site visits by mentor or mentee to the other’s program.    The following criteria will be considered in selection of 15 program directors for the pilot study.

  1. Established Program Director experience with APDS engagement
  2. Continuous accreditation in the PD’s primary program
  3. Prior educational and research experience
  4. Membership in the APDS
  5. Resume
  6. Statement of intent/interest
  7. 2 year commitment (one mentee per year)

Surgery Residency Program Director mentee

Mentees will be selected by the Task Force.  The initial pilot study will include 10 general surgery residency program directors.

  1. Attendance at new program director workshop (in the past 2 years)
  2. Program Director within first 3 years of engagement
  3. Application to be completed
  4. Resume to be submitted
  5. Statement of intent/need to be submitted by the mentee
  6. Consideration of letter or support from mentee’s Designated Institution Officer or Chairperson