Internal Medicine Residency

As you consider the University of Florida College of Medicine – Jacksonville for your internal medicine training, please read what our residents have to say as they look upon their experience with us:

Sebastian Mikulic, M.D.

Internal Medicine Resident
Class of 2022

"As a Jacksonville native, I always planned to come back home following medical school. On a personal level, I desired to return because of my family, as well as Jacksonville’s low cost of living, historic neighborhoods, beautiful beaches, a multitude of sports teams, and excellent schooling systems. On a professional level, I sought the excellent training opportunities provided at UF Health, Jacksonville. As a recent internal medicine graduate and now chief medical resident, I can confidently say the program prepared me for life outside residency. During my time as a resident, I learned how to adequately assess patients with point-of-care ultrasound, perform numerous bedside procedures, and treat a variety of pathology I undoubtedly would not have seen elsewhere. Additionally, the comradery and collegiality present during my program not only fostered a welcoming learning environment but also aided me to form some of my strongest bonds and friendships. Overall, I am extremely fortunate and grateful to have had the opportunity to train and grow at UF Health as a physician."

Jorge Verdecia, M.D.

Internal Medicine Resident
Class of 2020

"I never had the pleasure of coming to the University of Florida as a medical student, but I have now enjoyed many years of captivating experiences and a second home. So why was UFH-Jax, a choice for me? Well, I'm not too fond of Miami and wanted to move as far away as possible. But I quickly realized this was a different program than the ones I had interviewed for before coming here. The residents that were here were happy, outgoing, and caring. I still recall the names of the residents that were present at the pre-interview dinner. Also, many, including me, were fans of House [TV series], so for a bonus, UFH has a real Dr. House; I did ask where he had left the cane during my interview, but try at your own risk. Residency here is exciting, and work is tolerable and doable. Residents participate in many activities outside of medical life, such as golf, soccer, etc. Food is never an issue and sharing homemade goods is constant. The training is exceptional, and if it sounds cliché, try it yourself and find out what good training looks like. I have completed my fellowship and have remained here as an Attending; given that others have done the same, I believe this exemplifies the type of program we have."

Fadi Kandah, D.O.

Internal Medicine Resident
Class of 2022

"I was first exposed to UF Jax as a medical student when I rotated on cardiology consults. It was during that month that I realized that this program was for me. Besides being back in my hometown, I felt my own sense of community here. My initial interactions with everyone as a scared medical student; ranging from random staff, residents, and attendings felt smooth and nonjudgmental. This sense of support carried on as I went through residency. My very first day of residency was a 24-hour call in the medical ICU. While extremely terrifying, I only remember feeling an amazing sense of accomplishment after completing the shift due to thoughtful, down-to-earth co-residents guiding me through every step. The culture here is noticeably different from a lot of programs which makes it special. Hard work is valued but also finding joy during and outside of work is as important. This is often overlooked in many other places, and I believe this program does an incredible job of understanding that education is maximized in a comforting environment. Being able to continue my cardiology fellowship here will allow me to forge more memorable experiences and be an advocate for those who apply at UF-Jax."

Bijal Patel, D.O.

Internal Medicine Resident
Class of 2021

"Following my SubI rotation in the Medical ICU, I immediately knew the University of Florida College of Medicine-Jacksonville was where I wished to complete my Internal Medicine training. The learning environment was very nurturing and promoted medical curiosity, critical thinking, and collaboration. The attending physicians were very passionate about teaching and inspired residents to integrate pathophysiology into clinical practice. Additionally, the diverse pathology and patient complexity I encountered allowed me to feel prepared for my career following the completion of training. Not only did this program promote medical excellence, but it also prioritized resident wellness. Multiple social activities were organized throughout the year to create a healthy work-life balance (beach days, dog parks, recreational soccer, and golf tournaments). The comradery among residents, fellows, faculty, and staff at UF was very special and allowed me to create friendships that will last a lifetime. I am grateful for my training with the Internal Medicine program and excited to continue my journey here with the Pulmonary & Critical Care team!"

Melissa Dakkak, D.O.

Internal Medicine Resident
Class of 2016

"My first experience at the University of Florida College of Medicine – Jacksonville was as a medical student in cardiovascular critical care. There was a diverse exposure to current interventional and radiological procedures as well as a wide variety of experiences and instruction in pathology. As an aspiring cardiologist, the experience was encouraging. There was a great sense of camaraderie between the residents. I also felt very much at ease in the work environment and they were all eager to teach. As a resident, the experience is even more enriching. I have grown tremendously as a physician and a person. I found a second family here in Jacksonville. From eating out to going to a comedy show, our class has bonded. I am so happy with my choice."

Aisha Khan, D.O.

Internal Medicine Resident
Class of 2014

"There are many reasons for why I chose to come to University of Florida College of Medicine – Jacksonville for my Internal Medicine residency; great location, state of the art research and academics, a multitude of fellowships, and most importantly camaraderie amongst residents and faculty. There is great emphasis on team work and patient safety, ensuring the best care for our patients. We have the privilege of serving a diverse patient population, giving us the opportunity of learning from and managing varied pathologies. Overall, I am very happy with my decision to come to UF College of Medicine – Jacksonville for my Internal Medicine residency. UF & Shands Jacksonville is a great place to work! "

Christina Mathai, M.D.

Internal Medicine Resident
Class of 2014

"Like any good medical student, I had my list of what I was looking for in a residency: high-volume county ER, sick patient population with a variety of pathology, subspecialty services, diversity in residents, night float. EMR, health insurance and food. Check, check, and check! Now that I am a resident, I realize the reasons I love our program the most are for things that you don’t see on paper. For example: teaching Florida’s brightest medical students (Go Gators!), meeting my classmates for sushi on the river, getting a call from an ER resident for an admission, then meeting her for cupcakes after work or even watching my husband play basketball with our residents and attendings. It was also really important to me to have an airport nearby so I can visit my family, a beach nearby to relax with friends, a beautiful neighborhood a short drive from the hospital, and of course plenty of shopping! There are many reasons to choose UF Jax, but when you get here you’ll realize the best part is simply becoming part of the Gator family!"

Justin R. Federico, D.O.

Former Chief Resident
Class of 2011

"Rotating through University of Florida College of Medicine – Jacksonville was like coming home for several reasons…not only did it place me back in my home town, but as a graduate of UF, it was a chance re-connect with one of the premiere institutions in the nation. The program made such an impression on me that I applied for a second rotation as a SubI, and it placed UF College of Medicine – Jacksonville as the forerunner among my choices for residency. As a SubI, I was the physician—these were my patients and they were far from “run of the mill.” I saw pathology that most students only see in their textbooks and work with a varied population. These patients were in such need of care that I could not help but leave every day knowing that I had made a difference. As far as support systems go, the hospital abounds with a collegiate atmosphere: faculty that really love to teach, residents that are always available and consultants that run the gamut of medical and surgical subspecialties, most of them in fellowships housed right here. I am grateful that we—the residency and I—chose each other. Now I get to play a role in providing the same educational experience to medical students."

Andrew T. Darlington, D.O.

Cardiology Fellow
Class of 2009

"My first exposure to the University of Florida College of Medicine – Jacksonville came during my fourth year of medical school as an external rotator. I had the opportunity to come to Jacksonville from my home in Philadelphia and spend a month on the internal medicine wards with Dr. Foster and his group of residents. What an experience it was! I was amazed at the diversity of the patient population. To this day, four years later as a Chief Medical Resident, I still continue to be astonished at what I see on a daily basis. One thing I took away from my month as an external rotator was the overall atmosphere of the hospital and its residents. Everyone worked hard but seemed to have a lot of fun together as well. UF College of Medicine – Jacksonville turned out to be the perfect match for me, not only because it is a community hospital that serves a diverse and underserved patient population, but also because all the resources of a larger program are available."