University of Missouri School Health Science Center – Columbia

Program Information

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Our ACGME-accredited program is a four-year integrated experience in anatomic (AP) and clinical pathology (CP). AP includes experience in autopsy and surgical pathology (including pediatric surgical pathology), neuropathology, hematopathology, dermatopathology, forensic pathology, renal pathology, diagnostic electron microscopy, and exfoliative and aspiration cytology. CP includes experience in hematology, coagulation, blood bank, flow cytometry, immunopathology, clinical chemistry, microbiology, cytogenetics, toxicology, and transplantation immunology. Molecular genetic pathology techniques are used and taught throughout AP and CP areas as appropriate. There is a separate curriculum in Medical Informatics. All house staff actively participate in a broad range of clinical conferences. Research and other teaching opportunities are available. A few residents opt for a 3-year AP-only program, or, rarely, a CP-only program. On rare occasions when vacancies occur, we consider applications for transfer from other programs at the appropriate PGY level. Our program stresses one-on-one resident: faculty interactions combined with a thorough didactic curriculum. Faculty are virtually always approachable and there is extensive mentoring. Our graduates do very well in getting quality fellowships and passing Board examinations.

There are 12 ACGME Pathology RC-approved positions in our integrated AP-CP program, which most of our residents pursue. A background in general AP and CP is provided by a series of required rotations totaling 42 months. The remaining months are used for elective experiences or research, leading to a total of 48 months total of training. Programs for those admitted with advanced standing are adjusted according to their previous experience. Initial rotations emphasize technical skills, methodology, disease mechanisms and the relationship of laboratory measurements to clinical problems. Subsequent rotations emphasize skills in consultation, quality assurance, and management. Specific learning objectives and help guide the resident in becoming a competent pathologist. We do have a medical scientist track as approved by the American Board of Pathology.

All training programs are under the direction of the University of Missouri School of Medicine. University of Missouri Health Care facilities include 349-bed University Hospital, the separate 161-bed Women’s & Children’s Hospital, and Outpatient Clinics, the Medical Sciences Building, the Missouri Orthopedic Institute, the Diabetes and Eye Research Centers, the Thompson Center for Autism Research, and the Health South Rehabilitation Center. The closely affiliated 104-bed Harry S Truman Memorial Veterans Administration Hospital is across the street from the medical school and University Hospital. The Ellis Fischel State Cancer Center is fully incorporated into our inpatient hospital tower. Specimens processed yearly approximate: surgical pathology approximately 22,000, clinical pathology 1,000,000, cytology 16,000 including an active fine needle aspiration service, FNAs 500, bone marrows 250, and hospital autopsies 70. Over 500 Medical Examiner’s autopsy cases are also used for resident training. Research facilities within the department include macro- and micro-computers, flow cytometry, DNA laboratories, a whole slide imaging facility, a molecular diagnostic laboratory, and a diabetes testing facility which does national standards testing. There is access to a Nano string Next Generation Sequencing facility, a proteomics facility, and other campus core laboratories. There are opportunities for collaborative research with faculty at the MU Veterinary Medical School, from other medical school departments (including small animal imaging facilities), and across the broader MU campus including the MU Research Reactor. Excellent, large cross-referred photographic files, paraffin tissue blocks, and glass slide collections go back three or more decades, with more recent digital imaging files as well. All residents have unlimited Internet access.

Columbia is a college community, the home for over 150 years of the University of Missouri, the oldest Land- Grant campus west of the Mississippi, and two other independent colleges (Stephens College and Columbia College). Lectures, concerts, art exhibits, dramatic productions, and other activities on the three campuses are open to the public (subject to the current limitations imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic). Sports fans enjoy major college athletics, with the university a member of the SEC. Within walking distance of the Medical Center are the University golf course, bowling lanes, tennis courts, gymnasia, including a large student-faculty athletic center, and indoor-outdoor swimming pools. Fine restaurants and night spots are plentiful and accessible. The pace of a medium-small city (just over 115,000 plus a 30,000 student population), recognized for its excellent overall quality of life, with moderate housing costs and excellent public schools, is combined with easy access to attractions in urban settings. Kansas City and St Louis are each 120 miles from Columbia.

Application Instructions

Candidates should be graduates of approved schools of medicine in the U.S. or Canada (MD or DO degrees), or, if graduates of foreign medical schools, must have ECFMG certification (requiring passage of USMLE Steps I, IICK, and IICS) and be eligible for Missouri training medical licensure. Satisfactory references are required. Normal starting date is July 1. Applications must be submitted through ERAS before December 1st to be considered for the program, but early application (September, October) is suggested as the interview capacity is often rapidly filled. All PGY1 positions will be filled through the NRMP.


Residents in their first year of postgraduate training receive a stipend of $56,987, which increases yearly; current 4th year residents receive $63,772. Residents receive malpractice coverage and a life insurance policy in the amount of their annual salary at no cost. A dental plan and several forms of health insurance are available through payroll deduction. Tax-deferred annuity plans are also available. Residents receive an $1200 annual travel and book stipend and four-weeks vacation per year.