Department of Pathology

Pathology for Medical Professionals and Students

Education and Training

The superb resources of the Department of Pathology and its environment support a full range of educational programs in Harvard Medical School.

Faculty and trainees actively participate in teaching of medical students enrolled at the Harvard Medical School. Several pathology courses are offered.

The main pathology course for Harvard Medical School (Immunology, Microbiology, and Pathology; IN754.0) – as well as the Human Pathology course for the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology (HST) program (HT030.0); are directed by the faculty in the BWH Pathology Department.

For 3rd or 4th Year Medical Students

Additionally, 3rd or 4th year medical students at HMS frequently choose to do month-long pathology rotations in the department including:

  • Anatomic Pathology-oriented Clinical Clerkship in Pathology (PA501.23); see description below
  • Molecular Cytogenetics in Human Disease (PA502M.23)
  • Gynecologic Pathology (PA504.23)
  • Clinical Clerkship in Neuropathology (PA506.23)
  • Embryopathology and Congenital Malformations (PA510.23)
  • Clinical Laboratory Medicine (PA511M.J)

For information about enrolling for these courses, please visit the website of the Harvard Medical School Office of the Registrar.

Faculty, residents and fellows give lectures, oversee interactive lab exercises, and facilitate autopsy observation during this course. The BWH Pathology Department faculty are recurring winners of teaching awards at the Harvard Medical School (HMS).

Clinical Clerkship in Pathology

The HMS Clinical Clerkship in Pathology (PA501.23) is a 4-week-long rotation. Students attend departmental meetings and conferences, participate in tutorials given by residents and fellows, observe morning sign-out sessions, spend time in the clinical, cytogenetics, and molecular diagnostic laboratories, and deliver one 20-minute presentation at the Gross-Micro conference.

For students interested in pursuing a career in pathology, this month-long rotation provides a broad overview of the field and can help students gauge their interest in pathology as a profession. With sufficient advance preparation, there is substantial flexibility, and the focus of any given rotation can be tailored to the needs of individual students.

For students interested in entering a specialty other than pathology, this rotation provides valuable understanding of the inner workings of a pathology department.

3rd or 4th year medical students from medical schools other than Harvard Medical School may also rotate in the BWH Pathology Department. Please contact the Harvard Registrar's Office for more information.

Information for Students Enrolled in an Elective Rotation

We look forward to having students rotate in the Pathology Department. If you have any questions prior to beginning your rotation, please contact the Chief Resident (BWH pager  617.732.5700, #11661#11661) or Dr. Elizabeth Morgan at eamorgan@bwh.harvard.edu.

Dress code is shirt and tie for men, work attire for women. White coats are optional. If needed, scrubs will be provided. The rotation does not include weekends, so your last day here will be the Friday on or before your completion date (if that date occurs over a weekend).

Please contact the Chief Resident (BWH pager 617-732-5700, #11661) prior to your rotation with the following information so that we can ensure access to our computer system: Date of birth, last 4 digits of your social security number, address (local if possible) and phone number.

Brigham and Women's Hospital is located at 75 Francis Street (corner of Vining and Francis St) in Boston and can be reached by subway (the "T") on the Green Line (specifically the E line of the Green Line). The stop is Brigham Circle. See a subway map and schedule.

At the 75 Francis St entrance, go through the large revolving door. Immediately to your right is a bank of elevators (the Amory elevators). Take the elevators to the 3rd floor. Turn left out of the elevator, walk a short way down the corridor, and then enter the Pathology Department through the first set of double doors on your left. The Chief Resident's Office is the very first door on the right once you go through those double doors.

Student Fellowship in Pathology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital:

The Role of Pathology in Contemporary Patient Care and Biomedical Research

Goals: Foundational education, hands-on experience, and translational research opportunities using pathologic basis of disease to inform diagnosis, therapy, prevention, and research.

Opportunity: Two (2) post-sophomore or post-junior medical students annually, from July 1 through June 30.  Students both with and without a long-term career interest in Pathology are likely to find this Fellowship valuable.

Curriculum: In order to develop a robust understanding of disease mechanisms, the tools and consequences of pathologic diagnosis, and how pathologists collaborate with caregivers, Student Fellows will be exposed to the entire spectrum of anatomic pathology and clinical laboratory services, including advanced molecular diagnostics.  Student Fellows will assume similar training and responsibilities as Residents in Pathology, including frozen sections and autopsies, body fluid analysis, management of transfusion donors and recipients, clinical laboratory management, and participation in teaching and service conferences.

Student Fellows will rotate as a team through core general services, and will also experience several of the sub-specialty services with an opportunity to focus on areas of particular interest.  A typical program will involve 7 months of Anatomic Pathology, and 2 months of Clinical Pathology (Laboratory Medicine), including a rotation in Molecular Diagnostics.

There will also be a three-month opportunity for a clinical-translational research project to be pursued with a BWH Pathology faculty mentor.  The Student Fellows will also have the opportunity to present their work at a national pathology meeting (e.g., USCAP, ACLPS), sponsored by the BWH Department of Pathology.

Stipend: $24,000 annually.

Application Process: Applicants should have a strong interest in academic medicine, and an excellent fund of clinical knowledge. Applications will be accepted from February 1-March 1, 2015 for the Fellowship year to begin July 1, 2015.

Applications should include a statement of interest, a letter of recommendation from a clinical mentor who can speak to the student’s interests in academic medicine, and a CV.  These should be sent to Dr. Richard Mitchell, c/o Department of Pathology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, 75 Francis Street, Boston, MA 02115.

Interviews will be arranged in March and a final decision will be available April 1.

Questions: Dr. Rick Mitchell, BWH Pathology, 617.525.4303 or rmitchell@rics.bwh.harvard.edu

Continuing Medical Education

Continuing medical education courses are directed by members of our faculty through the Partners HealthCare Office of Continuing Professional Development.

For a full listing of courses, please visit the website of the Partners HealthCare Office of Continuing Professional Development

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