Chiefs – IM


(L to R) Karam Ayoub; Will Atchley; Joyce Johnsrud










Hometown: Irbid, Jordan

Medical School:  Jordan University of Science and Technology

Future Career Interests:  Cardiology Fellowship

Hobbies and Interests:  Sports – especially soccer, cooking, playing chess, travelling

Why you chose UAMS: UAMS Internal Medicine Residency is an excellent training program. I had the opportunity to interview at multiple programs, but the connection between our residents was and is still unique. During my interview, I felt that I belonged in the UAMS family.

What do you like about Little Rock?  Little Rock is the largest city in Arkansas. It sits on the banks of Arkansas River. It is a very beautiful city with plenty of things to do. It has all the benefits of living in a big city without the traffic.

What you want an interested resident to know or advice you have: Internal Medicine residency might seem like a long journey, but it is not. Enjoy every moment of it, smile every day, and make as many friends as you can.


Hometown: Little Rock, AR

Medical School:  UAMS

Future Career Interests:  Pulmonary and Critical Care fellowship; academics

Hobbies and Interests: Arkansas Razorbacks football, camping, traveling

Why you chose UAMS: As a student here, I was able to get an insider’s view so-to-speak of the Internal Medicine residency training program and what it has to offer. I knew about the Department’s commitment to excellence in resident education and felt that the breadth of pathology seen in the state’s only academic medical center was fantastic. When I set out to select a residency training program, I found that the balance of resident autonomy and supervision combined with the collegial and supportive environment at UAMS was exactly what I was looking for. The added benefit of staying in my hometown made the decision to choose UAMS for residency training easy.  

What do you like about Little Rock?  I think that Little Rock’s southern charm and friendly people make it a great place to live. When you add in a low cost of living, mild winters, and scenic beauty with plentiful recreational activities, it makes Little Rock an easy place to enjoy too. Little Rock is Arkansas’ financial, governmental, and medical capital, which brings with it a wide restaurant and dining selection, diverse cultural and entertainment options, and an expanding array of micro-breweries. I’ve grown to really appreciate the city’s commitment to developing its parks and trails, which has led to a wonderful riverfront parks system with dozens of miles of walking and biking trails.  

What you want an interested resident to know or advice you have: I think one of the biggest things applicants fall short on appreciating is that leadership matters. Each program and institution has its own unique culture that is promulgated by the Departmental leadership. Things will continually change in residency training, as the ACGME continues to alter duty rules and as programs adapt to an evolving medical marketplace and the challenges related to healthcare delivery. It’s each department’s leadership that sets the tone for how they will weather the change. UAMS has fantastic leaders from the top down including the Chair of Medicine, Dr. James Marsh, and the Internal Medicine Program Director, Dr. Michael Saccente. It’s these leaders who continually advocate for our residents who will ensure the continued success of our program.    


Hometown: Houston, TX

Medical School:  University of Texas Medical Branch

Future Career Interests:  Infectious Diseases Fellowship

Hobbies and Interests: Cooking, Traveling

Why you chose UAMS: My husband and I couples matched, and during our interview season we had the opportunity to visit several different university programs. What drew us to UAMS was the fact that in addition to exposure to a wide range of pathology, the collegiality between residents was obvious and the program seemed very supportive of the residents, including dual physician families. During my time here, I have experienced a consistent responsiveness to resident feedback with changes that have further strengthened the program. Among those is a 4+1 block system that allows great continuity of care while allowing for a full weekend off each month.

What do you like about Little Rock? Aptly named “The Natural State”, Little Rock is a beautiful city where we enjoy the four seasons without the hassle of needing snow tires or the drudgery of 100-plus degree weather in 85% humidity (remember, I’m from Houston…). It is an easy city to live in with diverse restaurants, food trucks and seasonal farmers’ markets, all at an affordable cost of living.

What you want an interested resident to know or advice you have: In residency, it is valuable to be at an institution where you are surrounded by people who will support you and help you to achieve your academic goals. I know from experience that UAMS is committed to resident well-being and career success, which is reflected by our department’s leadership.