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Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland

For over 200 years, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) has played a major role in medical education and training in Ireland. Founded in 1784 to train surgeons, today RCSI is a globally-focused university of medicine and health sciences ranked among the Top 250 in the Times Higher Education world university rankings. In 2023 it secured #1 for the UN Sustainable Development Goal of “Good Health and Wellbeing” in the Times Higher Education University Impact Rankings.

RCSI is home to Ireland's largest medical school, as well as Schools of Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, Population Health, Nursing & Midwifery, Postgraduate Studies and an Institute of Leadership. Under statutory authority, it also manages postgraduate residency training, memberships, fellowships and continuous professional development for Surgery, Radiology, Emergency Medicine, Ophthalmology and Sports and Exercise Medicine in the Republic of Ireland.

RCSI offers Feinberg School of Medicine senior medical students the opportunity to undertake 4-week surgical electives at University Hospital Waterford, a tertiary referral hospital located approximately 165 kilometers southwest of Dublin. The city of Waterford was founded in the 9th century CE by the Vikings, making it Ireland’s oldest city. Today it is a vibrant small city of approximately 60,000 residents, making it the fifth largest city in Ireland. The hospital has 429 beds and is designated one of Ireland's eight cancer centers as part of the Irish government’s National Cancer Control Program.

  • Dates: Various
  • Length of rotation: Four weeks
  • Location: Waterford, Ireland (clinical rotations in Dublin are not offered)
  • Student level: M4/phase 3 students
  • Elective credit: Departments of Orthopedic, Vascular, General, Breast, Urology and Gastrointestinal Surgery

Rotation Information

Students are invited to select three preferences from the list of available surgical specialities. Junior surgery clerkship must be completed prior to applying. Access to medical specialties can be requested in lieu of surgical specialties, but will be subject to local availability.


Student accommodation is not provided by the RCSI, but advice can be sought from the RCSI Student Services Department.


Completed applications must be received eight months prior to your preferred start date. Successful applicants will be advised four months in advance of the location and start date of the elective, after which students will be required to register their acceptance. Upon receipt of these documents, students will be informed of the allocated specialty.


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