Ask Me Anything with Program Director Dr. Aaron Kraut

Dr. Kraut with his wife and two golden retrievers, Wally and Biscuit.

What does the UW residency program offer that is not available anywhere else?

We describe ourselves as a four-year-style training program in a three-year-plus package. We’ve integrated what we feel are the most important components of four-year programs:

  • Running a community emergency department as a pre-attending
  • Serving as trauma resuscitation leader
  • Engaging in longitudinal pediatric and critical care experiences, including with our premier Med Flight service
  • Being mentored by invested faculty who are dedicated to developing leaders

After three years of training, many of our residents elect to stay for an optional 3+1 year to pursue more specialized niche development in a number of subspecialty areas including prehospital medicine, ultrasound, global health, medical education, clinical simulation, administration and quality, research, critical care, and physician wellness.

How has the program evolved over the past few years?

Our program has really hit its stride. We’re old enough to know who we are and where we excel but not so old that we’ve forgotten how to innovate and grow. With the addition of multiple clinical leadership roles for our residents (pre-attending shifts, trauma resuscitation, and several capstone critical care months), we’ve seen graduates right out of training propelled into academic faculty positions, competitive fellowships, and leadership roles in community groups across the country. And despite tremendous growth as a program over the last 10 years, we’ve been able to preserve our resident-centric culture with robust faculty mentorship.

How do residents bond?

The tight-knit bonds between our residents undoubtedly start with a two-week-long orientation when they arrive in Madison and are cemented at an annual residency retreat shortly thereafter. In addition to social activities led by the upper classes, new residents quickly integrate with faculty, staff, and advanced practice providers at several department-wide social events, including EM Graduation and the Program Director Welcome dinner. Our residents often share an appreciation for hiking, cycling, climbing, or hanging out with their furry friends at any number of local dog parks. Residents and faculty also take time to enjoy the dynamic restaurant scene in Madison. In addition, faculty host off-campus events including EM journal clubs and career-advising sessions where residents glean advice about navigating life after residency.

Get to know Dr. Kraut and the rest of our residency program leadership.