The curriculum for each of the residency program pathways offered is designed to meet the needs of the twenty-first-century pathologist-in-training. The recent advances in genomics and bioinformatics require changes in pathology training programs that will allow residents to keep pace with these rapidly evolving fields. Residents in the program will receive training in the foundations of Pathology and also in the cutting-edge research and practice of the field.

The major components of all of the training programs include:
A. Required Structured Clinical Rotations
B. Didactics
C. Electives
D. Research

A. Required Structured Clinical Rotations
The clinical rotations are grouped into 3 sets of Core Rotations:
Anatomic Pathology Core Rotations
Clinical Pathology Core Rotations
Common Core Rotations

Anatomic Pathology Core Rotations
Surgical Pathology (Adult and Pediatric)
Autopsy (adult, fetal and forensics)
Renal and Liver Pathology

Clinical Pathology Core Rotations
Transfusion Medicine

Common Core Rotations
Molecular Pathology
Hematopathology with integrated flow cytometry

B. Didactics
Anatomic Pathology

1. 24 month organ system didactics paired with glass slide “unknowns”
2. Weekly autopsy gross conference including 15 minute didactic teaching session
3. Daily consensus conference followed by faculty-led teaching sessions around the multi-headed scope
4. Bimonthly microscope conferences with senior faculty
5. Weekly Interesting case conference with cases presented by residents, fellows and faculty

Clinical Pathology

1. Diverse laboratory medicine topics are covered throughout the year including bioinformatics and genomics.
2. Laboratory Management and Patient Safety: Educational sessions on patient safety, laboratory operations, regulatory issues and human resources
3. Advanced Training & Careers: Panels and teaching sessions on fellowships, career development and research
 4. Leadership Program

C. Electives
Numerous AP and CP electives are available at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania (HUP), the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), the Philadelphia VA medical Center, Lancaster General Hospital (LGH), Presbyterian Hospital and Pennsylvania Hospital (PAH). In consultation with a faculty mentor, residents may also design electives to fit their own needs and interests.

D. Research
A multitude of opportunities exist for basic science and clinical / translational research and the Department provides excellent mentoring for those wishing to pursue a research career.

Selected Training Highlights

Training in Genomics and Molecular Diagnostics
Given the growing importance of nucleic acid analysis in the practice of medicine, all residents will receive extensive training in cytogenetics, targeted molecular diagnostics, as well as the emerging field of genomics.  

Penn Medicine’s Center for Personalized Diagnostics (CPD) became operational in 2013 and is actively analyzing patient specimens and affecting clinical treatment decisions. The focus of the CPD's initial efforts has been toward developing two cancer gene sequencing panels: a custom hematologic malignancy panel and a solid tumor panel. The primary targets include leukemias, lymphomas and solid tumors, beginning with brain, melanoma, and lung tumors. The goal is to identify genomic alterations that allow clinicians to design and implement optimal treatment plans. As part of their training in genomics, residents will rotate at the CPD. It is important to note that the rotation at the CPD offers a wide range of opportunities for resident research projects. 

Leadership Training
The Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Residency Leadership Program is an exciting new program offered to residents and fellows in conjunction with the Penn Medicine Academy. The goals of the program are to develop future leaders in a variety of professional roles and educate trainees in basic leadership skills that will continue to be fostered throughout their careers. The program is directed by both Dr. Carolyn Cambor and Dr. Deborah Sesok-Pizzini along with faculty from within and outside the Department. Consultants with experience in leadership training participate in workshops offered throughout the year. These workshops are in conjunction with individualized mentoring opportunities with the Chair and other senior leaders in the Department. Residents have the opportunity to assess their leadership skills in areas including communication and conflict management. Other leadership topics covered include:  Giving and Receiving Feedback, Communicating Effectively, Building and Strengthening Relationships, and Personal Accountability. Departmental faculty are included in some joint resident/faculty workshops which enhances the learning experience for both groups. In addition to leadership training and development, a robust teaching curriculum is offered for management education including patient safety, operations management, quality control and assurance, financial management, and career design and development. We are committed to providing opportunities for management and leadership education as well as situated learning, so that the graduates of our training program are prepared to take on leadership and administrative roles early in their careers.
Subspecialty Training in Surgical Pathology
The surgical pathology section provides service via a subspecialty model. This provides residents the opportunity to develop areas of concentration and to design elective time in areas of subspecialty interest.