Q&A with a CHOP Resident: Sheyla Richards, MD, MS

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Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) is a world leader in advancing healthcare for children by integrating excellent patient care, innovative research, and quality professional education into all of our programs. Since our founding in 1855, we fostered some of the nation’s pioneers in pediatric medicine and continue to be the premier training ground for future pediatric leaders.

In 2002, Dr. Stephen Ludwig founded the Multicultural Physicians’ Alliance (MPA), which is supported by the Pediatric Residency Program and the Office of Diversity & Inclusion. Like CHOP’s founders, the residents and fellows in MPA share the common goal to make sick children well and to secure a healthy future for families. We are featuring members of MPA in a series of Q&A to talk about what drew them to CHOP and what they appreciate most about CHOP’s culture.

Sheyla Richards, MD, MS, is a first-year pediatrics resident from South Florida who then moved to New York City for her undergraduate and medical school training at Columbia University. She pursed her MD/MS in Biomedical Sciences with a focus in Global Health and completed a research year in La Romana, Dominican Republic, working with multiple at-risk populations.

What was the specific thing/feature that made you select CHOP in your ranking?

After my experience participating in the Penn Visiting Clerkship for Students Underrepresented in Medicine, I was confident that this was the institution where I wanted my residency training to take place. During my four weeks on the General Pediatrics – Hematology service, I was impressed by the attention to teaching on rounds and the unique role of the senior resident in leading them. Continuing to work with underserved patients of diverse backgrounds from urban settings was a priority to me, and I looked forward to the opportunity to do so in the inpatient setting, at continuity clinic in South Philadelphia, and through global health partnerships.

What are some things you appreciate about the culture at CHOP?

What I have enjoyed most about the culture at CHOP is the diversity of the faculty members with whom I’ve worked. Having faculty who are underrepresented in medicine in program leadership, as team attendings or as personal mentors, has created a sense of belonging and support for me as I go through my Pediatric training.

What do you wish you knew when you were applying for residencies that you learned as a resident?

The idea that you are truly never alone. There is a very graduated increase in the amount of responsibility and independence that trainees are given with respect to patient care, but there are multiple people, in various stages of their training, either on your primary team, or simply in your program, who are there supporting you along the way.