American University of Antigua (AUA) is proud to know that its alumni are taking their first steps in making their mark on the medical profession. After this year’s Match, many of AUA’s students have secured residency appointments. Jena Zakhary is one of them.

Zakhary enrolled at AUA in September 2006. During her Basic Sciences courses, she was searching for a subject that she could maneuver into a career. While she was attending her clinical rotations, she discovered the specialty she was most passionate about – Family Medicine.

“[The clinical rotations] helped me choose what I wanted to do with my medical career,” said Zakhary.

Much like the United States, Canada has its own matching program, Canadian Resident Matching Service (CaRMS). The program is a non-profit organization that works closely with the medical education community to provide an electronic application service for students to obtain a residency position in Canada. However, much like the United States, very few spots are available for graduates from international medical schools. Zakhary acknowledged that it has been an uphill battle trying to acquire a residency appointment.

“It’s hard to get back to Canada being a graduate from an international medical school,” said Zakhary.

For the past two years, CaRMS has been trying to compensate for this deficit of spots by hosting an annual symposium exclusively for international medical school graduates. The symposium’s purpose is to help these graduates understand the residency landscape in Canada and network with professional organizations. At last year’s symposium, there was a keen emphasis placed on the benefits of practicing in Family Medicine.

Zakhary affirmed how her education at AUA was as responsible as her own proactive attempts in achieving this coveted residency appointment.

“All the professors I had on the island made sure that everyone was on track to succeed,” said Zakhary.  “AUA provided the path which allowed me to do my best and succeed.”

Her success story is not the only one to emerge from AUA’s alumni. As more details emerge from the recent Match, there are further accounts to come.  Zakhary will officially be graduating this June. Even though this is AUA’s third graduating class, these exemplary students have laid the foundation for a great legacy.