Zachary Ankney, MD
Medical School: Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pa.
Undergraduate: Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Indiana, Pa.
Born in Somerset, Pa., growing up in Johnstown, Pa., living in Indiana, Pa. where I completed undergraduate work, and with family in the Pittsburgh area, I had many reasons to look for a residency program in Western Pennsylvania. One of the most difficult aspects of completing medical school at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia was being away from my tight-knit family in the Appalachian Mountains of Western Pennsylvania. I didn't want to compromise on the quality of a family medicine residency program to be closer to home. Fortunately, I didn't have to with the Excela Latrobe Hospital Family Medicine Residency Program. While a medical student at Jefferson, I was blessed to have an opportunity to participate in the Dr. Andrew Bagby Scholarship Program at Excela Health between my first and second years. The program allowed me to experience many different specialties throughout the health system while encountering the kindness and instruction of numerous physicians. As a third- and fourth-year medical student, I was able to complete my family medicine rotation at Latrobe (one of the most popular rotations for Jefferson students, for good reason!) and family medicine outpatient sub-internship at Excela's Saltsburg Family Medicine office in Indiana County. The caring faculty and their passion for instruction continued during these two rotations as the quality of the residency program became clear. Now that I'm a member of the Latrobe Family Medicine team, I'm glad to say that the excellent teaching in the program has continued. Dr. Michael Semelka, program director, has been wonderful to work with and is cognizant of resident educational needs while maintaining the balance in a humane, yet rigorous, residency experience. Those ideals are also exhibited by numerous members of the faculty and residents, where helping others to succeed as a team is the norm. The Latrobe Family Medicine Program fosters a diverse education experience to prepare a resident for many different aspects of medicine, whether a resident would like to go into outpatient family medicine, hospitalist medicine, emergency medicine or sports medicine (even offering an opportunity to spend time with the Pittsburgh Steeler's team physicians during training camp at Saint Vincent College!). Since being back in the town where my grandfather worked (now retired from Kennametal), it is quite apparent that the Latrobe Family Medicine Residency Program is a real gem in a town that steel helped to build.