Residency Program

General Surgery - Education Residency Welcome

Welcome to the General Surgery Residency Program at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. We are located in Hershey, Pennsylvania, east of Harrisburg, the state capital. We are the only academic medical center in central Pennsylvania, and our facilities includes 500 bed with the region's only Children's Hospital, both Level I Trauma Center and Penn State College of Medicine. The undergraduate campus for Penn State is approximately two hours northwest of us in State College, Pennsylvania.

The goal of our General Surgery Residency Program is to provide the highest level of training to develop leaders in the practice of clinical and academic surgery. The program provides the opportunity for residents to learn in-depth the fundamentals of basic science as they are applied to clinical surgery while also learning the surgical skills necessary to undertake the most complex and demanding surgical conditions. Our program provides outstanding experience in the preoperative, operative, and postoperative care of patients in all areas that constitute the essential components of general surgery as specified by the ACGME and Surgical Review Committee. Through rotations at Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Children's Hospital, Lebanon Veterans Administration Hospital, and Pinnacle Health System residents are exposed to the entire spectrum of general surgery from a community hospital setting to a large quaternary referral and Level I Trauma Center.

Our Residency Program is fully accredited by the ACGME. We are approved to graduate five chief residents in General Surgery per year. The first two years of the program are designed to provide a core experience in the principle components of general surgery and the surgical subspecialities. After the second year, many of our residents chose to pursue two years of additional training in areas such as basic science research, surgical education, or healthcare delivery and outcomes research. Laboratory experience of two years is encouraged and available to those who wish to pursue an academic career. The third through fifth years of training are to provide an in-depth experience in trauma, acute care surgery, surgical oncology, endocrine surgery, minimally invasive surgery, vascular surgery, colon and rectal surgery, and pediatric surgery. The entire process provides a broad-based and well balanced experience in surgery which allows our graduates to be well qualified to pursue advanced training in various fellowships as well as subsequent career paths in either academic or private practice setting.

The educational component of our program is robust and offers each resident an extensive experience in didactic learning, surgical skills development, and simulation training. In addition to weekly lectures by attendings, the program also utilizes weekly conferences, specialized small group sessions, and one-on-one mentoring. Through the Cognitive Sciences Simulation Center residents have the opportunity to train on the latest in laparoscopic and clinical training simulators, to practice their surgical skills through biologic training sessions, and to develop their team skills while participating in Crisis Resource Management (CRM) clinical scenarios. Our Simulation Center is a Level I American College of Surgeons (ACS) Accredited Education Institute as well as Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery (FLS) approved test site. In additions to the basic and clinical sciences, we have incorporated into our Education Curriculum several topics including ethics and residents as teachers.

On behalf of the faculty in the General Surgery Training Program we appreciate your interest. If you would like to contact us, please do not hesitate to do so.

Dr. David Han

David Han, M.D.
Director, General Surgery Residency Program
Phone: 717-531-8898 or e-mail

Pamela Bossard-Sanko
General Surgery Residency Program Coordinator
Phone: 717-531-8557, Fax: 717-531-5393 or e-mail