UCHealth offers a 12-month comprehensive program, focused in hospital operations, where the fellow is viewed as a member of the senior leadership team. The fellow will gain invaluable exposure to system and departmental operations through participation in hospital rotations, meetings, projects and other professional experiences.

Advanced Practice Provider Surgical Fellowship Program

The Advanced Practice Surgical Fellowship is dedicated to training and recruiting advanced practice providers in surgery as to successfully integrate APPs into a career in surgery, while improving the life of every surgical patient.

The focus of this APP fellowship program is to provide surgical didactic and clinical experience across the continuum of care for surgical patients. Didactic education will include a comprehensive orientation, a variety of skill labs, case presentations and weekly education lectures. Clinical rotations will occur in a variety of specialties, including trauma and acute care, surgical oncology, breast, endocrine, urology, transplant, intensive care and a variety of other surgical specialty teams. This fellowship will provide opportunities for APP fellows to engage in research and quality improvement initiatives within the hospital with the support of UCHealth and University of Colorado Department of Surgery (DOS) faculty and staff.

The program is designed for both Physician Assistants and Adult Acute Care Nurse Practitioners who are interested in a career in general surgery or surgical subspecialty. The fellowship is ideal for new graduates who wish to pursue a career in surgery or practicing APPs who wish to change career focus. The goal of the fellowship is to help APPs smoothly transition into a career in surgery. Rotations will occur across a variety of clinic settings both at University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, Colorado and Medical Center of the Rockies in Loveland, Colorado.

Program Details:

Mission: The Advanced Practice Surgical Fellowship is dedicated to educating, training and recruiting APPs in surgery as to successfully integrate them into a career in surgery, while improving the life of every surgical patient now and in the future.

Program Goals: The goal of the APP Surgical Fellowship is to educate and train the APP Fellows to be a qualified, well-prepared practitioner of surgery who is able to practice at a high level of autonomy and in parallel with standard of care following graduation from the fellowship. The education program at UCHealth encompasses training across a variety of surgical departments, through development of education in clinical management, technical operative skills, quality improvement initiatives and surgical decision making skills.

Over the course of 12-months, fundamentals of education will include a comprehensive 3-week orientation, weekly didactic education, skills labs (including knot tying, training in laparoscopic techniques, pig labs, along with several other skills labs specialized for the surgical APP) and a range of rotational experiences, including acute care surgery, trauma surgery, critical care, surgical oncology, breast surgery, colorectal surgery, and cardiothoracic.

Fellows will have the opportunity to engage in quality improvement and research opportunities with the support from UCHealth and University of Colorado Department of Surgery (DOS) faculty and staff. Fellows are encouraged to participate in national and local surgical conferences. Furthermore, with the help of assigned mentors, they are encouraged to present research and poster presentations.

Benefits and Compensation:

A competitive salary in comparison with other APP fellowship programs will be provided to all fellows over the course of 1 year.

Additional benefits include: medical insurance, dental insurance, eye insurance, short-term and long-term disability and retirement plans.

Paid time off: To request vacation time, you must send your request to the program director at the start of the fellowship year. Requests will be granted to the extent possible with the residency schedule. You can expect 2 weeks of vacation each year.

Paid time off: As a fellow, you are not guaranteed holidays, but will be dependent on the needs of your clinical team. Holidays will be discussed on an individual basis and determined prior to the start of your clinical year.

Unplanned absences: Unplanned absences should be kept to a minimum. If you are unable to make it to work for personal circumstances, it is your responsibility to immediately notify the program director and the chief resident on your service as soon as possible.

Continuing Medical Education: Graduates can be expected 50+ hours of CME at the completion of their surgical fellowship. Fellows are also encouraged to attend local and national surgical conferences as available.


Didactic Curriculum:

Didactic curriculum will be incorporated throughout the year and alongside clinical curriculum. During the initial 3-week orientation, there will be an emphasis on didactic curriculum, including talks on fluid management, electrolyte replacement, acid/base balance, acute abdomen, surgical emergencies, common surgical complications, need to know anatomy and basics of operating room equipment.

Additional didactic curriculum throughout the clinical year will include weekly Department of Surgery grand rounds, Morbidity and Mortality Presentations, Excellence in Communication Training, monthly journal club and a variety of other conferences as organized by the Department of Surgery and APP Surgical Fellowship Program.

Over the course of the year, with the help of an assigned mentor, fellows will be responsible for identifying and developing quality improvement and research projects. At the end of each year, fellows will be responsible for presenting their cumulative end of year projects to faculty and staff of the fellowship program and department of surgery.

Clinical Curriculum:

During the course of the 12-month clinical year, APP Fellows will work alongside medical residents, including first year interns and chief residents. Duties and experience of the APP Fellow will include obtaining an accurate history and physical examination, presenting a concise HPI, writing orders, reviewing patient records, developing a differential diagnosis for a host of common surgical conditions, assisting in the operative room, ordering and interpreting diagnostic studies, and performing a variety of procedures with the supervising physician. Day and night shifts are to be expected over the course of the year.

Clinical rotations will occur at two locations across the University of Colorado Health System, including in Aurora, Colorado at Anschutz Medical Campus and in Loveland, Colorado at Medical Center of the Rockies.

During the clinical year, fellows will gain experience in all areas of surgical care management, including pre-operative, intra-operative, and post-operative care. Additional skills fellows can expect to acquire include wound care, removal of surgical drains, phlebotomy and Foley placement. Under approved supervision, fellows may also acquire skills in central line placement, arterial line placement, and chest tube placement.

Rotation Goals and Objectives

Rotation goals and objectives are based on the specific rotation and will be provided to each of the fellows at the start of their rotation. Rotations include acute care surgery, trauma surgery, cardiothoracic, Surgical Oncology, Vascular, Transplant, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Surgical ICU, and Urology, along with several other surgical rotations based on the fellow's interests. Advisors will be identified at each of these specific rotations.

How to Apply:

To apply, visit:  Advanced Practice Provider Surgical Fellowship


All applicants must have graduated from a Physician Assistant or Acute Care Nurse Practitioner Program. Additionally, all applicants must have passed or be eligible to take the National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistant (NCCPA) certification exam or National ACNP or AGACNP certification exam:

Class of 2019-2020 Timeline:

  • Program Application Open: July 2019
  • Application Deadline: October 31, 2019
  • Interviews: November, 2019
  • Candidate Selection: November/December 2019
  • Program Start Date: March 2020

Application requirements:

  • Application
  • CV/Resume
  • Official transcripts from any undergraduate college(s) and PA/ACNP school.
  • BLS/ACLS certification cards (if available, not required)
  • A one-page personal statement on why you are interested in the APP Surgical Fellowship Program at UCHealth
  • Two letters of recommendation (at least one letter from your PA Program)
  • National Certification by Professional Credentialing Body (if certified); certification before December 31 is mandatory

Letters of recommendations can be emailed to app.surgfellowship@ucdenver.edu

Please email/mail all of the above documents to:

University of Colorado Hospital

APP Surgical Fellowship Program

Office of Advanced Practice

12401 E. 17th Ave

Leprino Building #822, Mail Stop F728

Aurora, Colorado 80045

Email: app.surgfellowship@ucdenver.edu

You will receive email notification upon completion of your application.

As always, program admission is contingent upon completion of employee health screening, background check and University of Colorado Hospital credentialing process.


Please request that official, sealed transcripts be mailed from your undergraduate college/university and your PA/ACNP school.

Transcripts can be sent directly to the Office of Advanced Practice at University of Colorado.


Strong applicants will be invited for an in-person interview following review of all applications.


All candidates will be notified via email of the admission decision once all applications and interviews are completed. A ranked alternative list will be created for applicants who do not immediately receive a fellowship spot. Should an accepted candidate withdraw from the program prior to the start date, candidates on the alternative list will be contacted.


How many fellows will be selected each year?

At the start of our program, we plan to select four APP surgical fellows. Typically, there will be two residents at UCH-Anschutz and two at Medical Center of the Rockies.

Do you have to be credentialed in the state of Colorado to apply?

No. Once applicants are accepted, we will help you navigate the credentialing process prior to the program start date.

Faculty and Staff:

Cris Cribari, MD

Medical Director Medical Center of the Rockies

Akshay Chauhan, MD

Medical Director UCH-Anschutz Medical Campus

Christan Bartsch PA-C, MPH

APP Surgical Fellowship Director

Jason Vance, PA-C

APP Site Coordinator, Medical Center of the Rockies

Jennifer Rodgers, DNP

Director, Office of Advanced Practice, UCH University of Colorado Hospital and School of Medicine

Founder, UCHealth APP Surgical Fellowship Program

Kathleen O’Keefe

Director of the Office of Education, University of Colorado Department of Surgery

Graduation requirements:

Fellows will receive clinical feedback after each of their rotations. Each fellow must receive a passing evaluation from each of their surgical rotations to complete the fellowship. Additional, laboratory, skills and classroom testing will occur throughout the year, which fellows will be expected to pass. Each fellow will also develop and complete an end of year project, poster or presentation as a requirement for graduation. Remediation of each of these requirements will be considered on an as needed basis.

For additional questions regarding the program, please email app.surgfellowship@ucdenver.edu.

University of Colorado Hospital fellowship

Program information:
  • 12-month comprehensive program
  • Projects will be customized to the fellow’s interests as well as the immediate needs of University of Colorado Hospital
  • Fellow is compensated and will report to Chief Operating Officer
  • Increase fellow’s understanding of how decisions are made by senior leadership
Application requirements:

Master’s degree from a CAHME accredited program or an accredited MBA program with a focus in health care administration in one of the following areas prior to starting the fellowship program.

  • Health Administration (MHA)
  • Business Administration (MBA)
  • Public Health (MPH)

Participants of programs requiring a residency to fulfill the requirement for a master’s degree are eligible to apply.

Poudre Valley Hospital fellowship

Program information:
  • 12-month comprehensive program
  • Applies graduate school knowledge and provides staff support to the CEO, COO, vice president or director
  • Assists on special projects: provides administrative direction, short and long term planning, program evaluation, budgeting, and coordination of assigned areas
  • Fellow is compensated and will report to the Chief Operating Officer
Application requirements:

Master’s degree from a CAHME accredited program or an accredited MBA program with a focus in health care administration in one of the following areas prior to starting the fellowship program.

  • Health Administration (MHA)
  • Business Administration (MBA)
  • Public Health (MPH)

To apply, start by searching the keyword “fellowship” above.

Career opportunities