General Surgery Rural Track

Located on the shores of spectacular Lake Superior, our PGY 4-5 rural training track in Duluth, Minnesota offers world-class training in one of the most beautiful places in the world.

The General Surgery Residency Rural Training Track at Essentia Health St. Mary’s Medical Center has full-spectrum general surgery training for practice in rural or urban settings. Our residents train with experienced physicians of diverse educational backgrounds and interests.

  • Hospitals: St. Mary’s Medical Center, Essentia Health Duluth, Essentia Health Virginia, Essentia Health St. Joseph's Medical Center, and Essentia Health St. Mary's Detroit Lakes
  • Clinics: Essentia Health Duluth Clinic, Essentia Health Virginia Clinic, Essentia Health Brainerd Medical Clinic, and Essentia Health Detroit Lakes Clinic

Please see the General Surgery Residency application process for application details.


PGY 1, PGY 2 and PGY 3 rural training track residents will be based at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus and follow the rotation schedule of the traditional General Surgery Residency Program.

In the Rural Training Track, residents will complete the 4th and 5th year at Essentia Health St. Mary’s Medical Center in Duluth, Minnesota.  The rural track includes traditional General Surgery Residency curriculum with an emphasis on the wide variety of surgical health care required of surgeons in rural environments including cesarean sections, gynecology, endoscopy, emergency and trauma surgery triage, stabilization and transport, thoracic and vascular surgery.


According to a recent poll conducted by Outside Magazine, Duluth was chosen as “America’s Best Outdoor Town.” Perfectly positioned between the sparkling waters of Lake Superior and one of the most spectacular wilderness areas in the United States—the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness—Duluth, Minnesota boasts a comprehensive, state-of-the-art medical community with a physician population of over 400.

A regional medical center for the 19-county region of northeastern Minnesota, northwestern Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, Duluth has three hospitals, one Level I Trauma and one Level II Trauma Centers, both with Lifeflight services. 

The rural training track offers a diverse educational experience that will prepare you for practice in any setting. And we offer all this with a Minnesota friendly personality and small-town warmth of character. One thing is for sure—the more you know about Duluth, the more you’ll appreciate all that it offers.