Pathology - Subspecialty Surgical Pathology Fellowship

The Subspecialty Surgical Pathology Fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital offers in-depth training and opportunities for clinicopathological and translational research. Presentation of an abstract is expected.

Scope of Training

The Pathology Service at the Massachusetts General Hospital offers a one-year fellowship program in subspecialty surgical pathology.  The goal of this fellowship is to combine in-depth training in various subspecialties of surgical pathology with opportunities for conducting related research, and provide a basis for a future career in academic pathology.

The fellowship is centered on active clinical services with outstanding diagnostic material to enhance the experience of the fellow.  It provides an opportunity to conduct clinicopathological and translational research in the chosen area of subspecialty interest with pathology faculty members and clinical physicians.

Fellows are encouraged, and expected, to prepare one or more abstracts for presentation at annual national or international meetings and such as those of the International Academy of Pathology and its US-Canadian division.

Number of training positions available per year/per program year

Fellows may be involved in either one or up to three specialty areas including breast, bone and soft tissue, cardiovascular, head and neck (ear, nose, and throat, or ENT), gastrointestinal, genitourinary, gynecologic, obstetric and perinatal, pulmonary, and renal pathology.

Graduated responsibility

An attending pathologist reviews and countersigns all cases for at least the first two weeks of a service, but the expectation is that no changes should be necessary to cases that the fellow thinks are straightforward. In this way, the fellow and the program director will be able to assess the fellow’s ability to function independently, while maintaining an adequate level of supervision until completely unsupervised sign-out is approved.

Supervision of the fellow by the faculty

The fellows are supervised by Vânia Nosé, MD, PhD, Program Director of the Subspecialty Surgical Pathology Fellowship Program.

Vacation time/Personal Time

Four weeks per year.

Trainee Selection

The subspecialty faculty and the fellowship committee review applications. Selection is based on proof of interest in the chosen subspecialty, quality of training in surgical pathology, letters of support, and potential for independent research.


  • Hospital appointment given to the fellow: Graduate Assistant in Pathology
  • Billing privileges are the same as for staff
  • The fellows sign an annual contract


Updated 5/16/2011


Applicants must be Board-certified or eligible for certification in AP or AP/CP, and have a full Massachusetts medical license prior to starting the fellowship. If the applicant is a graduate of an international medical school, they must also have a valid visa (O visa, H visa or permanent residency) and ECFMG certificate.

Applicants for Subspecialty Surgical Pathology fellowships must:

  • Hold certification in Anatomic Pathology or in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology or be eligible to sit for the certification examination given by the American Board of Pathology, and,
  • Be eligible for employment and medical licensure in Massachusetts




Updated 10/16/14


Educational goals and objectives for the fellows to become competent diagnostic pathologists, through the acquisition of skills, knowledge and judgment reviewing approximately 4,000 specimens per year depending on the particular subspecialty or subspecialties.

Schedule, format and content of didactic activities

The clinical teaching is assumed by various faculty members. During the week of clinical service by the fellow, the faculty will counter-sign the diagnosis for at least the first two weeks. During a typical sign-out week, the fellow reviews cases and makes diagnoses independently (reviewing with residents). The staff will review the cases during a one-on-one session and reassess the original diagnoses totaling approximately two to three hours of didactic teaching. After evaluation of the fellow's progress, she/he will be progressively allowed to sign out independently.

The fellow will be expected to participate in all educational activities of the subspecialty group, including but not limited to consensus conferences, journal clubs, and various conferences with clinicians.

While covering the clinical service, the fellow will perform literature searches and review articles when appropriate to research questions about current cases and to develop ideas for projects. The fellow has the opportunity to present the pathology at one of the weekly Clinicopathologic Conferences (also known as the Case Records of the Massachusetts General Hospital, and published in the New England Journal of Medicine). Other activities will combine attendance at conferences, research and teaching of residents.

An organized schedule of activities is planned on a six-month basis. The fellows are expected to attend all educational meetings and to be responsible for clinical conferences when on service.

Typical Daily Schedule when on Sign-out




Monday - Friday

8 am -12 pm


Monday - Friday

12:30 pm -1:30 pm

Surgical pathology conference

Monday - Friday (variable)

pm (variable)

Review of consultation cases with senior faculty

Description of basic science and/or clinical research requirements and opportunities

The fellow is actively expected to assume two clinical projects per year. The department offers ample opportunities for special studies including extensive availability of immunohistochemistry and molecular diagnostics. Translational and/or clinical research may be undertaken as part of the ongoing investigative programs in the Department of Pathology, or as part of the programs within the numerous laboratories in the Departments of Surgery and Medicine. To support these research projects, internal departmental grants are available.

Responsibilities of the fellow, including teaching responsibilities

The Pathology service supports numerous teaching and educational activities, which include:

  • Review of cases at the daily surgical pathology conferences
  • Attendance at the weekly molecular pathology and research conference
  • Subspecialty presentations to the residents
  • Attendance at several Harvard Medical School postgraduate courses on Surgical Pathology

The fellows are responsible for teaching residents through sign-out and presentation at the surgical pathology conference and regularly presenting cases at conferences with clinicians.


Note: The list above only includes senior anatomic pathologists. For a full list of faculty, visit the Pathology faculty by subspecialty service directory.


Applications must be submitted by deadline of October 31st (19 months prior to start date; Fellowships commence on July 1).
Individuals interested in applying should send a completed CAP standardized application, curriculum vitae (CV), personal statement of qualifications with area(s) of interest, USMLE or COMLEX transcript, and three letters of recommendation, one of which to be from the current program director. Documents can be mailed or e-mailed to:

Pathology Fellowship Programs
Massachusetts General Hospital
55 Fruit Street, Warren 219
Boston, Massachusetts 02114-2352
Phone: 617-643-4482
Fax: 617-643-4045

Program Director
Vânia Nosé, MD, PhD
Program Director, Subspecialty Surgical Pathology Fellowship Program
Massachusetts General Hospital, Pathology Service
55 Fruit Street, Warren 219
Boston, MA 02114 

Updated 10/16/14