Valley Children’s Announces Inaugural Residency Class on National Match Day

Clovis Roundup Staff

Valley Children’s Pediatric Residency Program unveiled its inaugural class on Friday, national Match Day, when medical students around the country find out where they will train for at least the next three years. Of the 13 residents who will arrive at Valley Children’s in June, four grew up in Central California. A total of 10 are from this state or have deep ties to the region.

“I am absolutely thrilled with the talent and passion for pediatrics that we have been able to recruit for our inaugural class,” said Dr. Jolie Limon, Valley Children’s chief of pediatrics and executive director, medical education. “These are young physicians who are dedicated and committed to the kids of the Central Valley, and who will go on to serve as leaders for coming generations. We hope to keep them in the Valley Children’s family after they complete their training.”

Over the last several months, a panel of Valley Children’s representatives – from pediatric specialists to nurses to social workers and pharmacists – interviewed more than 130 candidates from around the country.

“This innovative, interprofessional recruitment model is unique,” Dr. Jolie said. “We work in teams and we train in teams. So it was critical that our candidates immediately understood and embraced our collaborative environment.”

Here are the members of Valley Children’s inaugural residency class:

Daniel Ebbs, A.T. Still University School of Osteopathic Medicine: Former paramedic in Madera, founded a nonprofit to bring healthcare training to rural communities

Rebecca Filbrandt, American University – Caribbean School of Medicine: From Chico, has experience in rural health medicine, wants to practice medicine in rural communities

Devon Goossen, Saint Louis University School of Medicine: From Fresno, undergraduate degree from Fresno State, former Valley Children’s volunteer, wants to stay in Fresno and address critical health issues unique to the Central Valley

Theodore Gross, Tulane University School of Medicine: From New Orleans, will practice as a pediatrician for the U.S. Air Force after completion of residency

Daniel Merriott, Tulane University School of Medicine: San Jose native, advocate for children’s health issues

Jessica Monk, Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine: From Livermore, has completed several rotations at Valley Children’s and worked on research projects with Valley Children’s pediatric specialists    

Erica Neuhaus, Ohio State University College of Medicine: From Santa Clara, graduate of U.C. Merced, founded a neonatal and maternal-fetal medicine interest group and NICU “cuddler” program at Ohio State

Thanh Huong Nguyen, University of Colorado School of Medicine: From Aurora, Colorado, also has master’s degree in public health, served as math and reading tutor for 11 years

Tai Pham, Tulane University School of Medicine: From Milpitas, has master’s degree in public health, coordinated a clinic for a deeply underserved region of New Orleans, emphasis on social justice and cultural fluency in medicine

Juan Torres, UCLA/Drew Medical Education Program: From La Mesa, committed to addressing lack of medical needs among Latino populations

Cristina Vargas, U.C. Irvine School of Medicine: From Stockton, master’s degree in science in biomedical and translational science, research work in diabetes and underserved Spanish-speaking patients, instrumental in creation of Southern California program to help low-income schools meet diet and exercise requirements for students

Albert Vu, University of Colorado School of Medicine: From Irvine, worked for two years in a community clinic serving children in low-income areas

Zahia Zayed, Frank H. Netter MD School of Medicine at Quinnipiac University: From Hickory Hills, Ill., established school-based health science education program in town near her medical school

“One thing all of these residents have in common is their commitment to filling the gap of high-quality healthcare for families in areas where there is a shortage of doctors,” Dr. Limon added. “It is truly our privilege as Valley Children’s doctors, nurses and team members to work with this remarkable group of young adults as they begin the next phase in their education.”

In addition to Valley Children’s affiliation with Stanford University School of Medicine, the pediatric residency program also features partnerships with hospitals and medical groups throughout the area. Valley Children’s residents will have the opportunity for rotations at partner locations, including Kaiser Permanente and Saint Agnes Medical Center in Fresno and Dignity Health, and local pediatricians’ offices.

Valley Children’s Hospital continues to serve as a teaching site for more than 210 residents and medical students in a dozen other programs, including those based at Kaweah Delta Health Care District in Visalia, Mercy Medical Center in Merced and Clinica Sierra Vista in Fresno.