Pathology Resident Training Program


Goals | Objectives | Selection Criteria | Application | Contacts


The Department of Pathology offers ACGME-accredited residency training in Anatomic, Clinical, or combined Anatomic and Clinical Pathology. In addition, fellowship training is offered in Surgical Pathology, Cytopathology, Neuropathology, Molecular Genetic Pathology, Hematopathology, and Forensic Pathology (at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner).


The AP-CP programs provide residents with the training needed to prepare for a career in the academic or private practice of pathology. The program emphasizes the role of the pathologist as clinical consultant as well as diagnostician, educator, and manager. Core rotations include Surgical Pathology, Cytopathology, Autopsy Pathology and Neuropathology, Forensic Pathology, Transfusion Medicine, Hematopathology, Clinical Chemistry and Toxicology, Medical Microbiology, including Immunology/Virology, Molecular Diagnostics and Cytogenetics. Training is offered in Informatics and Laboratory Management. Residents are trained in fine-needle aspiration biopsies and therapeutic apheresis.


One-on-one training experience in laboratory rotations is supplemented by a full schedule of didactic conferences, "unknown" conferences, seminars, and journal club. Residents are actively involved in teaching medical students and technologists. Research opportunities are readily available and the Department offers financial support for residents presenting research projects at national meetings.


Program Goals and Philosophy 
The fundamental goals of the pathology residency program are to provide an opportunity for knowledge acquisition, skills training and practice, and to provide guidance in accomplishing exemplary patient care. Residents develop expertise in laboratory service and management, and data investigation and interpretation.


Our faculty recognize the resident as a mature physician seeking special competence in pathology. Our staff pathologists and other personnel willingly give of their time, knowledge, and guidance to the resident seeking it. Our training programs emphasize interpretative, investigative, and management skills, and are structured to avoid overemphasis in the technical aspects of pathology. The pathology laboratory is the resident's classroom, so we make every effort to utilize the laboratory's potential for instructional purposes.


Broad Program Objectives
Upon completion of the program resident will be able to:

  1. Comprehend the bases of pathologic processes.
  2. Explain pathologic processes that apply to individual patients, as well as to the general patient population.
  3. Analyze laboratory and clinical data.
  4. Interpret laboratory data for clinicopathologic correlation.
  5. Practice the technical and mechanical aspects of laboratory pathology.
  6. Perform laboratory management.

The pathology faculty expect that residents will be open to learning, will strive for the perfection of their skills, freely share their expertise, and willingly assume leadership roles in the education of other residents, physicians, and allied health professionals.


View our Residents and Fellows


Selection Criteria
All residents must have passed Step I and Step II (Clinical Knowledge and Clinical Skills) of the United States Medical Licensing Exam (USMLE), prior to their first day of employment.


All applicants must:

  1. Present three letters of reference from United States or Canadian physicians/dentists who have personal knowledge of the applicant's clinical abilities.
  2. Be within four years of graduation from medical or dental school, or direct patient care activity (either as an independent practitioner or a resident in an ACGME or AOA accredited residency). Nonclinical graduate work (e.g., research) in the United States or Canada does not meet this requirement.
  3. Have documentation of a minimum of three months direct patient care activity in the United States or Canada. Clinical rotations during medical school will suffice for US and Canadian students. For international medical graduates, externships of direct patient care in the United States or Canada will suffice; observerships do not meet this requirement.
  4. Any ECFMG certified applicant who has not been in a United States or Canadian residency program within 18 months of being issued their ECFMG certificate must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language Exam (TOEFL), and obtain a score of at least 600 before beginning their residency. The Test of Spoken English (TSE) and the Test of Written English exams are also required.

For more information about selection criteria, please visit our FAQ page.


For Residency we are only accepting the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) application starting with the 2001-2002 term.

Documentation Requirements for International Medical Graduates
Send notarized copies of the following documents to the Residency Coordinator:

  1. Your medical school diploma and an English translation, if the original is not in English.
  2. Your medical school transcript and an English translation, if the original is not in English.
  3. Your ECFMG certificate.

Ask three faculty members at your medical school to send letters of recommendation to the Residency Coordinator. If you have completed any graduate work, an internship, or other training in the United States, the letters of recommendation should come from faculty members or attendings who had a chance to observe your work in this country.


If you are a naturalized citizen or a permanent resident of the United States, send a photocopy of your citizenship papers or a photocopy of both sides or your permanent resident card.


If you are accepted into our program and are not a permanent resident or citizen of the United States you will be required to obtain a J-1 Clinical visa.


For more information about application process, please visit our FAQ page.


Helpful Links
The American Board of Pathology (ABP) web site offers detailed information on certification and accreditation of pathology training programs. The ABP offers three primary certifying examinations to establish general competence in pathology and a number of examinations to assess expertise in subspecialty areas.

Other useful resources include: 
Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG®) 
Electronic Residency Application Service


Program Administration and Leadership

Charles V. Clevenger, MD, PhD

Charles V. Clevenger, MD, PhD
Department Chair
Professor of Pathology

Interim Director, Pathology Resident Program
Carolyn Wingate Hyde Endowed Chair in Cancer Research

Susan D. Roseff, MD
Susan D. Roseff, MD
Professor and Chair, Division of Clinical Pathology
Medical Director, Apheresis
Co-Director, Resident Training Program

Margaret Grimes, MD
Margaret M. Grimes, MD
Professor, Pathology and Vice Chair, Pathology Undergraduate Medical Education


Contact Information

Michelle Smith is the Coordinator of the Resident Training Program. For information regarding admission to the program and specific questions about the program, please feel free to contact her.


Michelle Smith, Resident Training Program Coordinator 
Office: (804) 827-0561; FAX (804) 827-1078


The mailing address is:

Michelle Smith
VCU/MCV Department of Pathology
PO Box 980662
Richmond, VA 23298-0662


Chief Residents for 2015 - 2016

Steven Ellsworth, DO


Tracy L. Shipe, DO