Education Fellowship Residency

ENT residents match with top choices for surgical fellowships

Three chief residents in the Department of Otolaryngology at Washington University have matched with their top choices for prestigious fellowship programs, pursuing advanced surgical training in head and neck cancer and facial plastic and reconstructive surgery.

The matches reflect the breadth and quality of surgical and academic experience received by residents in the WashU program. Here they share their thoughts on matching and the outstanding qualities of their chosen sub-specialty training programs.

Katherine Chang, MD
Fellowship:  Head and Neck Oncologic Surgery and Microvascular Reconstruction at Emory University
photo of Katherine Chang, MD, and Ben Wahle, MD
Otolaryngology Chief Residents Katherine Chang, MD (left), and Ben Wahle, MD, were in the operating room when they learned of their matches with head and neck surgery programs at a Emory and Indiana.

“I was so very excited to match at Emory. I was attracted to the program because they are one of the highest volume head and neck cancer programs in the country. They are extremely well-rounded in terms of training: strong complex ablative experience, open skull base surgery, high volume trans-oral robotic surgery, and diverse microvascular experience. We have a few WashU alumni from that program (Stephanie Chen, MD, and Jen Gross, MD) who convinced me it was the best program for me. Also, Atlanta is a great city and very dog friendly for my dog Rupert. The faculty genuinely loved their job and seemed dedicated to mentorship”.

Ben Wahle, MD
Fellowship:  Head & Neck Surgery and Microvascular Reconstruction at Indiana University

“I’m so excited to have matched at IU for many reasons. IU has all the things I was looking for as far as surgical and clinical experience. It is a single fellow program with one of the highest surgical volumes in the country. It has one of the best reconstructive experiences – both high volume but also a highly diverse set of reconstructive approaches. They also have a high-volume trans-oral robotic surgery experience which was important to me. IU has an awesome group of head and neck faculty, some of whom I knew from medical school and others I got to know on interview day. Importantly, IU also had professional opportunities for my wife. My parents live in Indianapolis, and since we have a growing family, we will all benefit greatly from having lots of family support!”

Photo of Nneoma Wamkpah, MD, and Molly Heft-Neal, MD
Chief Resident Nneoma Wamkpah, MD, MSCI (left), and recently graduated head and neck fellow Molly Heft-Neal, MD, share congratulations. Both are heading to Michigan for the next steps in their careers.
Nneoma Wamkpah, MD
Fellowship: Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

“I am very much looking forward to my fellowship year in Ann Arbor. I gained some research mentorship from the Division of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Michigan during my residency, so I was ecstatic to find out that I will get to continue those relationships and build a complimentary set of skills as a well-rounded facial plastic surgeon.”