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Eight medical school graduates from the Central Valley, including two who got undergraduate degrees at Fresno State and Fresno Pacific, learned by simultaneous emails Friday that they have been chosen for medical residency programs in California.

Normally the “Match Day” announcements are in-person celebrations, but this year they had to be virtual events because of the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.

“Match Day” is when medical students all over the country learn which residency program they have been matched with.

All eight are UC Davis San Joaquin Valley Program in Medical Education (SJV PRIME) medical students. They will start training in June, and their residency programs will span from three to eight years.

They are Jose Acosta of Madera, Fresno State graduate; David Araiza of Stockton, UC Merced graduate; Tyler Carcamo of Belize and Bakersfield, CSU Bakersfield graduate; Brandon Croft of Visalia, Fresno Pacific graduate; Sydnie Espiritu of Delano, UCLA graduate; Lorena Garcia of McFarland, Duke University graduate; Daisy Manzo of Modesto, UC Davis graduate; and Enid Picart of Modesto, UC Merced graduate.

Two Matched With UCSF Fresno

All eight matched with University of California-affiliated residency programs and will be remaining in California. Picart matched with emergency medicine and Croft with internal medicine at UCSF Fresno, and Araiza matched with San Joaquin General Hospital Family Medicine in San Joaquin County.

SJV PRIME is intended to train doctors who are from the Valley and likely to return here to practice medicine, helping to ease the region’s severe shortage of health care workers.

“An aim of San Joaquin Valley PRIME is to train physicians for our underserved region and to increase the diversity of the physician workforce,” said Dr. Kenny Banh, assistant dean for undergraduate medical education at UCSF Fresno. “It’s incredibly rewarding to know that three of the graduates will be staying in the San Joaquin Valley and two are staying on at UCSF Fresno. All will be providing high-quality, accessible care. We congratulate them and wish them well in their residency training.”

UCSF School of Medicine received permission in 2018 to establish UCSF Fresno as a branch medical campus to lead SJV PRIME. The first six students started last fall.

They spend their first 18 months at UCSF in San Francisco and then come to Fresno for the remainder of their medical training.

SJV PRIME plans to admit 12 new medical school students this fall.

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