NYMC > Departments > Academic Departments > School of Medicine > Neurosurgery > Education > Residency


The Westchester Medical Center Neurosurgery Service is comprised of eight full-time and multiple part-time faculty members, and 7 residents. The PGY5 year is a protected research year (see below).] The Residency Training Program is in full compliance with the New York State 405 and ACGME workforce regulations. Residents on clinical service begin each day with rounds at 6:00 a.m. At the end of rounds, the chief resident assigns the day's work. At Westchester Medical Center the Neurosurgery Clinic is held twice a month, and residents are excused from surgery to attend. On Fridays, all residents participate in teaching conferences from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Residents are sent to a number of courses during their years in the program at the Department's expense.

Neurosurgery residents are enrolled in the Neurosurgery Department from year 1. The PGY1 year includes 5 months of neurosurgery, 3 months of neurosciences, 1 month of anesthesiology, 1 month of trauma surgery, 1 month of ENT, and 1 month of vascular surgery. While rotating on neurosurgery, neurosciences, anesthesiology, and neuro-ICU services, the PGY1 resident also takes neurosurgery call. The neurosciences rotation includes both in-patient and out-patient experience in neurology and neuroradiology.  The PGY1 also has one month of vacation as a single block. During the PGY1 year, the resident attends the “SNS PGY1 Resident Boot Camp Course.” The PGY1 resident takes the Part 1 Neurosurgery Boards for practice. During this year the resident should pass the USMLE Step III exam.

The PGY2 is assigned full-time to the Neurosurgery Service at Westchester Medical Center. The resident is exposed to a busy Neurosurgery Service and begins his or her neurosurgical training. Supervision and one-on-one training is abundant and is facilitated by the Chief Resident and all faculty members. After morning rounds and didactic programs, the PGY2 is involved with inpatient care activities on the clinical wards and in the Neurosurgical ICU and participates in open and endovascular surgery as an assistant. With the PGY1, the PGY2 gathers the data and participates in sign-out rounds at the end of the day. His/her clinical duties predominantly involve patient care, particularly critical care, under the supervision of both neurosurgery faculty members and a critical care medicine specialist. During the PGY2 year, the resident attends the “SNS Junior Resident Boot Camp Course” and a national neurocritical care course. The PGY2 resident takes the Part 1 Neurosurgery Boards for practice. 

The PGY3 resident spends time on a dedicated pediatric rotation at our busy Maria Fareri Childrens’ Hospital. There the resident gains experience in all aspects of pediatric neurosurgery including tumor, craniofacial, spinal cord, and open vascular surgery. The PGY3 spends an increasing amount of time in the OR with a particular focus on adult spine. The PGY3 also participates actively in the endovascular procedures. Also, the PGY3 resident is responsible for overseeing the PGY2 resident in their clinical duties, including emergency room and inpatient consultations. During this year, the resident attends AANS sponsored national courses in areas of their interest. The PGY3 resident takes the Part 1 Neurosurgery Boards for practice. The PGY3 alternates taking night float rotations on a weekly basis with the PGY4.

The PGY4 year is largely a continuation of the PGY3 year. The PGY4 resident operates as the senior resident in more complex pediatric, spine, and skull base surgeries. The resident also spends an increasing amount of time in endovascular neurosurgery coiling aneurysms, etc. During this year, the resident begins to formulate a plan for the research project to be undertaken the following year and attends the National Research Update in Neurosciences for Neurosurgery (RUNN) Course. The PGY4 resident may take the Part 1 Neurosurgery Boards for credit. The PGY4 alternates taking night float rotations on a weekly basis with the PGY3. 

The goal of the PGY5 resident is to design and undertake a research project, with a minimum of interruption from the rigors of the clinical service. The project will result in the preparation and submission of at least one manuscript based on original work to be published in a peer-reviewed forum. The resident works under the mentorship of Meena Jhanwar-Uniyal, Ph.D..

In addition to this primary research project, the PGY5 resident is involved in ongoing clinical projects with the full-time faculty at Westchester Medical Center. As the clinical responsibilities during this year are minimal, participation in more than one project is encouraged. The resident also utilizes this opportunity to complete academic work on projects initiated while on the clinical service.

The goal of the Chief Resident is to master neurosurgical operative and patient management skills by performing the majority of the complex cases done at Westchester Medical Center each year. The PGY6 manages the Neurosurgical Service and is responsible for making independent patient evaluations and treatment plans. At the end of this year, the PGY6 is able to diagnose and treat neurosurgical patients with authority.

The Chief Resident supervises and teaches the junior residents through morning rounds, inpatient management, and in the operating room. Administrative duties include coordinating on-call, OR, vacation, and rotation schedules. Also, the Chief Resident helps to coordinate Journal Club, the Quality Improvement program, and some of the Friday teaching conferences.

The PGY7 year will focus on transitioning from chief residency to junior faculty. This year also affords the resident to explore infolded fellowships at Westchester Medical Center, with focus in complex spine, endovascular neurosurgery, neurocritical care, or pediatric neurosurgery. We are still formulating this year as our first PGY1 year will not occur until 2019.

Learn more about our Education program or learn more about the program benefits.