Life in Seattle as a Resident

Residents enjoy building community together with the backdrop of beautiful Lake Union.Residents enjoy building community together with the backdrop of beautiful Lake Union.

The residency program believes in a healthy work/life balance for residents and their families during this busy time. With its vibrant city life and abundant outdoor activities, Seattle has something for everyone. Seattle is uniquely surrounded by the idyllic vistas of the Pacific Northwest – nestled within the Puget sound, with the Olympic Mountains to the west and the Cascade Range to the east. Southeast of the city in the Cascade Range is Mt. Rainier, its 14,410 feet dominating the skyline on a clear day. There are countless days with perfect mountain views. Despite its rainy reputation, Seattle has less rainfall per year than New York City, Houston, Boston, or Philadelphia.

A Diverse City

Seattle Children's residents pose on the steps of a house.Our program is only what it is because of the diversity of intersectional identities that we all hold.

Seattle is a culturally dynamic city, home to a diverse population. The city of Seattle and the greater Seattle area is located on Suquamish, Duwamish, Stillaguamish, and Coast Salish land. Native history and culture are important parts of the city and the region. In addition to Native Americans, there is a strong Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian population. The city is also home to many first- and second-generation immigrants from Africa, Central America, Asia, Eastern Europe, and the Pacific Rim. After English, the most spoken languages in the hospital are Spanish, Vietnamese, and Somali. Seattle also has a vibrant LGBTQ+ community, both within UW/Seattle Childrens and the city at large.

Get Outdoors!

Seattle Children's residents pose in the snow in front of a mountain peak.Close to Seattle are hikes to waterfalls, alpine lakes, and mountain vistas with epic views!

Outdoor life is an integral part of the city. From walking your dog around Green Lake with latte in hand, barbecuing on the beach while the sun sets over Puget Sound, or a long bike ride on the Burke–Gilman Trail, there are acres of parkland throughout the city. The many bays of Puget Sound, in addition to nearby lakes and rivers, have endless boating opportunities, from paddling small kayaks to riding the large ferries that are part of Washington's public transportation system.

The mountains are easily accessible in summer for gorgeous hikes to alpine lakes and surrounding peaks on trails lined with wildflowers and huckleberries. Many of our faculty are outdoor enthusiasts and are always available to recommend their favorite day hikes and backpacking excursions. In the winter, alpine skiers and snowboarders delight in the numerous resorts just an hour's drive away. Snowshoeing and Nordic skiing are also popular ways to explore the area.

Music and Arts

If you like live music, Seattle has more than 80 music clubs scattered throughout many neighborhoods, including Capitol Hill, Ballard, Fremont, SoDo, and the Central District. The summer brings even more venues, when many parks and the Woodland Park Zoo host their annual concert series. Although we are the city that originated grunge, there is a diverse selection of bands to suit any taste.

If classical music is more your speed, Benaroya Hall is home to the Seattle Symphony. The Seattle Opera and the Pacific Northwest Ballet perform at Seattle Center.

There is excellent live theater, supported by seven theater schools, 29 professional theater companies, and 56 fringe theater companies. Many playwrights, novelists, and poets call Seattle home.

Five art museums and 190 galleries display fine art, as well as folk art from Asian American and Native American cultures. In addition to established galleries, many neighborhoods host a monthly art walk, where local businesses display work by local artists. You can walk through the shops while sampling tasty treats and listening to live music.

Delicious Northwest Cuisine

Seattle Children's residents smile for the camera at a restaurant table.Residents often gather around excellent meals in the city.

Seattle is an epicure's delight. Whether you choose neighborhood haunts, cuisine from various cultures around the world, or restaurants with acclaimed celebrity chefs, dining in Seattle is an amazing experience. From sushi to soul food, Seattle's eateries can satisfy cravings for a dish from any corner of the world. If you prefer to be behind the stove, neighborhood farmers' markets and Pike Place Market provide fresh seasonal ingredients like halibut, wild salmon, Dungeness crab, sweet onions, mushrooms, stone fruits, berries, and asparagus.

Did you know that the climate in Seattle is similar to some of the finest winemaking regions in France? Although it has a relatively young wine industry, Washington has quickly grown to be the nation's second largest wine producer and is ranked among the nation's top wine regions. In addition to the Puget Sound appellation, Eastern Washington boasts 10 more appellations which make for an excellent weekend getaway.

Microbreweries have also established a strong presence in the Pacific Northwest. Washington state has more than 400 craft breweries.

A Day in the Life of an Intern on the Inpatient Medical Service

Seattle Children's interns pose for a picture during a party.

6:00–7:00 a.m. – Team sign-out

The day team consists of two to three interns and one senior resident, as well as medical students. In addition, there are often APP fellows and visiting Family Medicine, Psychiatry, or Anesthesia residents on the wards teams. Every morning, members of the team meet together to get sign-out from the overnight team of one senior resident and one intern. Throughout the inpatient month, the intern builds sign-out skills, ultimately taking the lead during this time.

7:00–8:15 a.m. – Pre-rounding

Each day, interns will follow an average of five to eight patients. They use pre-rounding time to discuss events with the nurses, review flowsheets, examine their patients, and talk to families.

8:15–8:30 a.m. – Intern/senior planning time

After completing pre-rounding, interns review new findings, refine their assessment, and plan with their senior resident. The numerous accessible computer workstations allow for easy review of laboratory data and imaging.

8:30–11:30 a.m. – Family-Centered Rounds

Each team rounds with general pediatric and subspecialty attendings. Patients, their families, nurses, pharmacists, and social workers join the medical team to plan care for the patient. Teaching by the senior resident and the attending is an important part of rounds. There is a care coordinator assigned to each team that helps with arranging patient follow-up at discharge.

12:30–1:30 p.m. – Noon Conference (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday)

This starts with a case crunch, during which residents lead peers in review and discussion of an interesting case. Lunch is provided. Following case crunch, faculty members from various disciplines present topics in a variety of formats. Evaluations are collected to improve the following year's curriculum. Executive residents hold resident pagers to protect this educational time.

12:30–1:30 p.m. – Intern Support Group (Thursday)

Once a week, senior residents take their interns' pagers so that the first-year residents can participate in this session. The group is typically facilitated by a wellness counselor, and the time is an opportunity for interns to confidentially share their experiences and bond with each other. Occasionally, seniors will use this time to talk about interesting cases or debrief on difficult patient outcomes.

1:30–5:00 p.m. – Patient care

Interns follow up on issues or tests ordered on their patients. They meet and admit new patients with supervision from the senior resident.

2:30–3 p.m. – Team teaching

In addition to bedside teaching on rounds, there is dedicated time in the afternoon for attendings to teach on topics relevant to the team's current patients.

3:30–4:30 p.m. – Check-In Rounds

Interns check in with all the nurses they have been partnering with throughout the day to make sure the day's goals for the patient are being met and assure there are no outstanding issues prior to evening sign-out.

5–6 p.m. – Team sign-out

Care is transitioned back to the night team.