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Neurological Surgery Residency Program

The Residency Program in Neurological Surgery at the University of Massachusetts Medical School is designed to provide each resident with comprehensive training in neurological surgery while also equipping him/her with the skills needed to become a successful scientific investigator or educator in neurological surgery. We are committed to training the next generation of neurosurgeon-scientists, educators and leaders in the field of neurological surgery.  Our residency program is directed by Mark D. Johnson, MD, PhD, FAANS.

Clinical training in the Residency Program in Neurological Surgery at the University of Massachusetts Medical School occurs at UMass Memorial Medical Center, the flagship hospital of UMass Memorial Health Care. Clinical training occurs on two campuses  of the medical center (the University campus and the Memorial campus). The clinical training program covers all of the major areas of neurological surgery, including:

  • Neurosurgical-Oncology (Pituitary and skull base tumors, primary brain and spinal tumors, metastatic disease)
  • Epilepsy Surgery
  • Cerebrovascular (Extracranial and intracranial microsurgery, endovascular surgery)
  • Spine and Peripheral Nerve Disorders
  • Neurotrauma
  • Pediatric Neurosurgical Disorders
  • Stereotactic and Functional Neurosurgery (Deep Brain Stimulation, Spasticity, Pain)
  • Radiosurgery

In addition to clinical training, two years of the neurological surgery residency program are devoted to research, more in depth training in specific clinical areas, or the attainment of an additional postgraduate degree (e.g. MBA, MPH, MHA, etc.).

Our Residents

Department of Neurological Surgery, First Resident, Rrita Daci, MD, PGY-3

Rrita was born in Kosovo and immigrated to the Unites States when she was a child. Although she grew up in Edgewater, New Jersey and is a U.S. citizen, she has remained fluent in Albanian and volunteered in the neonatal ICU in Kosovo in 2012. Rrita attended college at Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences where she graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences and Pharmacology in 2015. She matriculated at Cooper Medical School of Rowan University in 2015 and graduated after a stellar academic performance. While at Cooper Medical School, she conducted research on a variety of topics, including epilepsy, brain tumors and nanomedicine. She won several research awards, including First Place in Medical Student Research and Second Place in Basic Science Research at Cooper University Hospital. She also served as the President of the American Red Cross chapter at Cooper Medical School. Her hobbies include impressionist and mural painting as well as digital and film photography, and she was editor and chief of the literary magazine at Albany College. We are excited to have her join the Department of Neurological Surgery at the University of Massachusetts Medical School as our first resident, helping to set a high standard for residents to come.

Department of Neurological Surgery, Brittany Owusu-Adjei, MD, PGY-2

Brittany was born and raised in New York City. She graduated last spring from the combined 7 year B.S./M.D. program at the City College of New York/CUNY School of Medicine. Brittany has numerous undergraduate academic honors, including being named to the Dean’s List and graduating magna cum laude with a degree in Biomedical Education. Her clinical performance in medical school was outstanding. According to a letter from the CUNY School of Medicine, she would have been considered for membership in the AOA medical honor society if the school had an AOA chapter. Brittany was the recipient of a Mack Lipkin Research Fellowship to study the effects of intense exercise and deep brain stimulation on Parkinson’s Disease. In addition, she has conducted research on the restorative effect of sleep on learning, and she also studied the therapeutic effect of middle meningeal artery embolization on chronic subdural hematoma. She has been involved in numerous community activities as well, having started the first bone marrow drive at her school and having mentored disadvantaged students whose parents were incarcerated.  Brittany’s letters of recommendation from medical school are filled with superlatives. One of her professors described her as “gifted, highly intelligent, extremely organized and determined” and “one of the best students I have encountered in my thirty plus-year career in the academic world.” Another wrote “Brittany is an exceptional human being…I see her as a shining star in neurosurgery.” Our own faculty were uniformly impressed with Brittany’s academic accomplishments and outstanding personal qualities, and deemed her to be among the best of the hundreds of applicants who applied to our program this year. Please join us in welcoming her to the UMass community.

Welcome Constance Mietus, MD, PhD, PGY-1, Neurological Surgery Resident

We are pleased to announce that Constance Mietus, MD, PhD, will be our next resident in the Department of Neurological Surgery at the University of Massachusetts Medical School and UMass Memorial Health Care. Constance grew up in a small rural town in Nebraska and, through a combination of grit, hard work and outstanding academic achievement, made her way to the University of Pennsylvania where she earned BA degrees in biology and psychology. She then spent several years doing laboratory research on neuroinflammation and traumatic brain injury before matriculating in the MD/PhD program at the University of Nebraska College of Medicine. Her clinical and academic performance were described as “outstanding” with “an amazing fund of knowledge.” One recommender wrote “She takes initiative and has a strong work ethic…Professionally, she leads by example. She demonstrates excellence in all that she does and is gracious to all members of the healthcare team.” Her PhD thesis focused on the microvascular pathology of peripheral vascular disease. She has co-authored 10 peer-reviewed publications and has received numerous awards, including a University of Nebraska Presidential Graduate Fellowship (awarded for research accomplishments and scholastic performance), a First Place Research Poster Award, the Most Outstanding Student Grand Rounds Presentation Award, and a top 10% presentation at the American Heart Association scientific sessions. Constance is a proven leader, having served as Founder and President of the Nebraska chapter of the American Physician Scientist Association, Founder and President of the student chapter of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, and secretary/treasurer of the student interest group in Neurology.
Please join us in welcoming Constance to our UMass Neurosurgery family.

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Application Process

The University of Massachusetts Neurological Surgery residency is a seven-year ACGME-approved neurological surgery training program. The program accepts one categorical resident per year. This includes two years of research and academic time during the PGY-4 and PGY-5 years.

Required documents include:

  • Completed ERAS Application
  • USMLE Transcript (first-time pass is required)
  • Medical School transcript
  • Personal statement
  • ECFMG certificate (if applicable)
  • Citizenship/Visa Status
  • 3 letters of recommendation

All required documents must be submitted through ERAS and will not be accepted outside of ERAS. All applications will be accepted through the Electronic Residency Application Service only (ERAS) beginning October 21.

The institution accepts a standardized personal statement but suggests that applicants consider discussing attributes that will help foster the applicant's competence and resilience.

To ensure safety and equity of applicants, all interviews for the 2021/2022 season will be conducted virtually. Further, considering the COVID pandemic, we will adhere to recommendations made by the AAMC and ERAS regarding the interview season.

For more detailed information regarding application process please click the link below: 
University of Massachusetts Medical School - Office of Graduate Medical Education.

For more information, please contact our residency program coordinator at
Phone: 508-856-4050
FAX: 508-856-4053