Frequently Asked Questions About the Pathology Residency Program at the University of Utah

Is the residency program accredited by the ACGME?

Yes, we are fully accredited by the ACGME for a total of 20 residents. The program was established in 1960 and has a long stable history of training outstanding residents in both anatomic and clinical pathology. 

How many positions are there in your program?

We accept four in the AP/CP track and one in either an AP-only, CP-only, or Physician Scientist track each year.

Do you have a cut off for USMLE Step 1 and 2 scores?

You must have passed the USMLE 1 and 2 CK examinations with a score of at least 200 (candidates successful only after repeated attempts are less likely to be considered). Candidates who match with the University of Utah residency program must successfully pass Step 1, Step 2 CK, and Step 2 CS before they begin their residencies.

Do you consider year of graduation from medical school?

We require applicants to have graduated from medical school within the last four years.

Do you sponsor visas?

Questions regarding visas can be answered by the Office of Graduate Medical Education at phone 801-581-2401 or email

When do you start reviewing applications? When will I be notified if I am selected for an interview?

We only accept applications through ERAS and for applicants registered for the NRMP match. Once an application is complete it is reviewed by the residency program director and a decision is made whether or not to invite the candidate for an interview. The program coordinator then invites the candidate via email. We receive a large number of applications from well-qualified candidates but we are only able to interview a small number.

What should I expect on my interview day?

We strive to make your interview day as informative as possible. The program interviews two to three candidates per day from October 15 through December 20. When you are invited to interview you will be asked to give three acceptable interview dates and to work with the program coordinator to finalize a date. Dinner the night before with several residents is will received by the candidates. The interview day typically starts at 7:30 am and ends around 3 pm. Candidates can expect to have one-on-one interviews with representative faculty members from the anatomic pathology and clinical pathology divisions, the department chair, the assistant program director and the program director; breakfast and lunch with several current residents; and tours of the residents' room and training facilities. The program pays for a one night stay at the University Guest House on the University of Utah Campus. The most convenient and economical way to get to and from the airport is Express Shuttle

How many months of electives do residents get?

Residents in the AP/CP combined program have seven months of electives, and residents in the CP-only or AP-only programs have 12 months of electives.

What research opportunities do residents have?

Many research opportunities are available covering a wide range of areas from basic science to preclinical to clinical research. Though not required, all residents are encouraged to pursue research projects as part of their training. Trainees with an interest in research will find enthusiastic support from the faculty, including help in identifying research mentors. Residents may also choose to do research elective rotations, allowing them to have an extensive research experience in more diverse areas of research. Current CP-only residents are incorporating intensive research training during extended elective rotations into their curriculum. In 2016, we formalized the American Board of Pathology's Physician Scientist track, which allows for an additional department funded research year. Find more information on research opportunities

Do residents receive money for books or travel?

Yes. Books for incoming residents are paid for by the department. Residents in their PGY-1 year receive basic pathology text books as well as $500 per year towards books and travel expenses to be used towards attending educational conferences. Residents in their PFY-2 year and beyond receive $1,000 toward books and travel. In addition, residents who present research or who are a delegate to a national organization receive funds from the department to cover the costs of airfare, hotel, conference registration, and per diem to attend some conferences. Money for books and travel are in the same fund, and residents may use the money for either books or travel.

How many cases do the residents participate in?

The following totals are from the 2015–2016 academic year and include all training facilities:

Autopsies 200

FNA's 1250

GYN + non-GYN cytology 13,100

Surgical procedures 94,700

Bone marrows 862

Clinical laboratory tests 25 million


There are two services covered by pathology residents, and there is always one pathology resident on each of these services. Residents are assigned to two or three day blocks of call (Monday and Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, Friday through Sunday). If a holiday falls on a Monday then this is included in the weekend on-call block (Friday through Monday). Residents are not scheduled on consecutive blocks.

AP (anatomic pathology) call is from 5 pm to 8 am, Monday through Friday and 24 hours a day on holidays and weekends. AP call primarily includes grossing in specimens on the weekend at Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) and Primary Children’s Hospital (PCH), and performing frozen sections for University Hospital, HCI, and PCH. Residents are required to be at the University Hospital/HCI from 5 pm to 7 pm on weekdays and to come in on Saturday at 8 am and once on Sunday to check the refrigerators at University Hospital, HCI, and PCH for specimens from the OR. Other than the times stated, the resident on AP call is on at-home call. A resident typically receives three to four calls on a weeknight of AP call. There is always a faculty member on call in each of the following divisions: anatomic pathology, PCH, VAMC, cytopathology, and hematopathology for the resident on AP call to consult. Residents take fewer AP calls as they advance in the program. 

CP (clinical pathology) call is 5 pm to 8 am, Monday through Friday and 24 hours a day on holidays and weekends and primarily includes answering clinical pathology questions for ARUP laboratories’ staff and clients and handling transfusion and blood banking questions for University Hospital, HCI, and PCH. Residents on CP call receive an average of three to four calls on weekdays. CP call is at-home call, and residents only rarely have to come into the University Hospital as most calls can be handled over the phone. There is always a faculty member on call in each of the following divisions: clinical pathology, PCH, blood bank, and hematopathology. Residents take fewer CP calls as they advance in the program. 

Residents on the infectious disease rotation take one week of 24/7 call per month of the rotation. This is at-home call.

What is the conference schedule?

Residents have required morning conference from 8 to 9 am every day. Find more information on the Conferences tab.

Contact Us

Kristi J. Smock, MD
Director of Residency Training
Email: kristi.smock@aruplab.com

Kimi Crist
Residency Coordinator
Email: kimi.crist@path.utah.edu