Residents are selected through through the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERASĀ®), a program of the Association of American Medical Colleges. Applications to our residency programs are only accepted through ERAS.

Our selection process is based upon multiple factors, including general academic performance, clinical performance, letters of recommendation, personal qualities and achievements. The general surgery residency program at Iowa Methodist Medical Center accepts applications from all interested medical students.

Deadline and Documentation

General Surgery Residency Program accepts applications from September through December.


The selection committee reviews all material and interviews a select group of qualified applicants to fill the 4 categorical and 2 preliminary positions.  The interview season typically begins in Mid-November and concludes Mid-January.

Interview Criteria

Applicant must meet these minimum criteria to be considered for an interview: 

  • Pass Step 1 USMLE on 1st or 2nd attempt.
  • Three letters of recommendation; at least two from surgeons.
  • If from non-US/Canada school
    • Match within two years of graduating from medical school
    • One year of clinical experience in the US
    • J1 Visa only
  • Individual exceptions based on strength of application after review by the Program Director

Interview Day

Upon confirming your appointment for interview, we will send you information on travel and accommodations. The evening before the interview day, we will host a dinner with several of our residents at a restaurant near the hospital.  This will give you the opportunity to see the downtown Des Moines area and visit with our residents in an informal and casual atmosphere.

A typical interview day:

  • one hour introduction to our program with program director and coordinator
  • interviews with faculty and senior residents
  • luncheon with house staff and tour of our facility.

Interviews held on the weekdays will begin at 9:30 am and conclude no later than 3:00 pm.  We do schedule a couple of Saturdays and they will begin at 9:00 am and conclude no later than 2:00 pm.

A select few interview days will be scheduled on Thursdays and on those days we will begin at 7:00 a.m., with M&M Conference and 8:00 a.m. Grand Rounds. Then the typical interview day schedule will follow.

Contact Us

Please don't hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have about our program.