Women in Surgery

Women in Surgery


Women Alums Influencing the Field of Surgery

Carrie Peterson
Carrie Peterson, MD, MS, FASCRS

Dr. Carrie Peterson is Assistant Professor in the Division of Colorectal Surgery at the Medical College of Wisconsin, where she has worked since 2014. Peterson did her general surgery residency at UCSD between 2005 and 2012, and a research fellowship in UCSD’s Division of Trauma. After her residency training at UCSD, Dr. Peterson went to Memorial Sloan-Kettering for a fellowship in Colorectal Oncology, and then to Cornell/NYP for an additional year of general Colorectal surgery training, before joining the faculty in Wisconsin.

UC San Diego's Department of Surgery is committed to strengthening gender equity—among our residents, faculty and staff—and to creating a work and educational environment that celebrates all of our diverse team members.

Women in Surgery (WIS) was created to connect, inspire and support the professional development of women surgeons. We do this through periodic networking events; our annual lectureship; and supporting our women surgeons to navigate issues of work-life balance; negotiating in the workplace; and leadership.

The first woman resident joined UC San Diego's Department of Surgery in 1973. Today, female residents represent 43% of our trainee population. This leap reflects broader trends: In 1970, less than 8 percent of U.S. physicians were women. Today, women make up more than 34 percent of the physician work force.

Despite progress, women remain underrepresented surgery, particularly among full-time academic faculty. A 2014 report from the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) notes that, in the field of surgery, women comprise only 22 percent of full-time faculty and only 1 percent of all department chairs.

We want to see more women in surgery, and we want to support our women surgeons to flourish—in the clinic, as teachers, and as scientists.