Residency

Tip of the week: Get creative with low-cost social activities for residents

Residency Program Insider, December 27, 2012

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Planning social activities for residents or improving your program or materials on a shoestring is more possible than you might think. With little or no extra money in their budgets, coordinators have organized fun activities for residents or introduced cost-saving innovations.

"Funds are getting tighter and tighter," says Mary Sarah Thanas, C-TAGME, senior administrative assistant for the Combined Medicine-Pediatric Residency Program at the Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn. Social activities are crucial for boosting residents' morale and helping them balance their lives outside the hospital, but many programs no longer have-or never had-funds budgeted for these activities, Thanas says.
 
Some ideas for sponsoring resident social activities without a big budget include:
  • Hosting a party or other special event in February, an off-peak month when hotel and catering costs are lower-it's also the mid-year point when resident morale is low.
  • Having the registrar collect a fee for resident and ­fellow verifications. The money goes to a chief ­residents fund, which is used to hold social events.
  • Soliciting faculty and alumni donations for ­resident activities that aren't covered in your program's budget.
For more low-cost, creative ideas for residency programs, read the full article in the January 2013 issue of Residency Program Alert.



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