Top Plastic Surgeon Schools in the United States

Learn about residency programs for plastic surgeons, the medical doctors who use corrective surgery to address aesthetic issues and functional impairments caused by congenital conditions or diseases. Read brief summaries of the training provided by three top schools, and find a table that lists other noteworthy colleges and universities that offer programs in plastic surgery.

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School Information

Among the three institutions summarized below, students will find two Ivy League schools: Harvard University and Yale University. In general, doctors-in-training can complete integrated residency programs that include experience in general and plastic surgery, or independent residency programs in plastic surgery that take place after a 4-year general surgical residency. Clinical experiences can include exposure to cosmetic or oncologic surgery. Residents may also have the opportunity to conduct research.

Top Schools in the U.S, with Plastic Surgery Programs

1. Harvard University in Cambridge, MA

Harvard University, one of the oldest postsecondary schools in the nation, tied with Princeton as the best national university in the U.S. News & World Report rankings for 2012. The university offers a residency program in plastic surgery, during which residents rotate among five teaching hospitals. In tandem with education and research activities, students complete clinical experiences in reconstructive, craniofacial and oncologic surgery. Clinical training in cleft, aesthetic and breast surgery is also provided, along with practice in microsurgical techniques.

2. Yale University in New Haven, CT

As of 2012, the Princeton Review listed Yale University as one of the best 376 colleges in the U.S. Yale University's School of Medicine, which celebrated its 200th anniversary in 2011, offers a 6-year residency program in plastic surgery. Once admitted, students learn how to perform oncologic and cosmetic surgery and treat burns, microvascular issues and head traumas. Students also have the opportunity to research hard and soft tissue growth and repair, hand surgery and telemedicine.

3. Stanford University in Stanford, CA

In 2012, U.S. News & World Report ranked Stanford University the fifth-best national university in the country. The Stanford School of Medicine offers a residency program in plastic and reconstructive surgery that, as of 2012, required clinical training and a research or international service component. In general, the program takes over seven years to complete. Once enrolled, students receive training in microsurgery, hand surgery and craniofacial surgery, among other related areas.

List of Ten Good Plastic Surgery Schools in the U.S.

School Name Distinction Location
Dartmouth College Offers 6-year combined general and plastic surgery residency, as well as a 3-year plastic surgery residency Hanover, NH
Duke University Clinical training takes place at a Level I trauma center Durham, NC
Harvard University Independent and integrated plastic surgery residency tracks offered Cambridge, MA
Johns Hopkins University Offers independent or integrated residencies and burn or craniofacial surgery fellowships Baltimore, MD
Pennsylvania State University - Hershey One of the oldest facilities in the nation treating cleft conditions in children Hershey, PA
Stanford University Residency locations include Stanford clinic and local hospitals Stanford, CA
University of Miami Residents have clinical or science-based research requirement Coral Gables, FL
University of North Carolina Offers 3-year plastic surgery residency Chapel Hill, NC
University of Virginia Independent and integrated plastic surgery residency programs offered Charlottesville, VA
Yale University Offers students overseas surgical service opportunities in developing nations New Haven, CT
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