U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Gastroenterology Fellowship Program

University of Maryland/NIH Clinical Scholars Gastroenterology Fellowship Program

The NIDDK offers a fellowship in gastroenterology in a combined three-year program with the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Training in this Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accredited program provides excellent research experience and clinical training for physicians who wish to pursue a career in academic gastroenterology and hepatology. Under the leadership of Dr. Stephen Wank, Chief of NIDDK’s Digestive Diseases Branch, the fellowship provides unique opportunities that are not readily available at the University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC). Fellows participate in numerous clinical research protocols in gastrointestinal (GI) and liver diseases and have access to extensive NIH Clinical Research Center resources such as clinical and research conferences, journal clubs, visiting professor lectures, pathology, radiology, medical grand rounds, and NIH personnel and patients. The fellowship also supports the opportunity for earning a concommitant Master's Degree in Clinical Research. See the Gastroenterology Fellowship Photo Gallery to learn more about some of these activities. You can also view a list of recent Gastroenterology Fellow Publications.

Program Structure

The ACGME accredited fellowship is a three-year program.

Year 1

In the first year, fellows will complete 12 months of clinical training, including continuity clinic rotations at UMMC and the Baltimore VA Medical Center (BVAMC). The schedule is similar to the year 1 schedule for fellows in the UMMC program, with an emphasis on clinical gastroenterology and endoscopic proficiency. Rotations will include the UMMC gastroenterology consultation service, UMMC hepatology consultation service, BVAMC gastroenterology and hepatology consultation service, and dedicated endoscopy months. Weekly outpatient clinics are held at the UMMC and BVAMC. Endoscopic procedures are performed based on the assigned rotation. Night call is shared with the other fellows.

Years 2 and 3

During the second and third years, fellows will spend 100 percent of their time with the Digestive Diseases Branch, NIDDK at the NIH Clinical Center where they will complete all gastroenterology ACGME clinical and research requirements.  This includes completion of ACGME-mandated clinical rotations, gastroenterology and hepatology clinical consultation services, weekly continuity clinic in GI and liver diseases, endoscopic procedures, and night and weekend call. The remainder of years 2 and 3 are spent honing endoscopic skills, increasing proficiency in clinical consultation, and participating in clinical research investigation. 

See a detailed description of the program’s rotations.


Emphasis is placed on day-to-day feedback to fellows on individual cases and procedures. In addition, attendings provide written and informal feedback at the end of the rotation for each fellow. Written evaluations are available for review by the fellow and are discussed with the program director every six months, at a minimum. Likewise, fellows provide written confidential evaluations of the program and of each faculty member. The fellow has ample opportunity for discussion with the program director throughout the training period.

In addition to the minimal requirements above, emphasis is placed on mentorship.  Fellows are mentored by individual faculty members regarding research projects, didactic presentations, and long-range career goals.

Faculty and Fellows

Learn more about NIDDK’s Digestive Diseases Branch faculty, Current and Recent  Gastroenterology Fellows, and the following affiliated clinical faculty:
  • Stephen Wank, M.D., Chief, Digestive Diseases Branch
  • Marc Ghany, M.D., Tenure Track Clinical Investigator, Liver Diseases Branch
  • Theo Heller, M.D., Tenured Senior Investigator, Liver Diseases Branch
  • Stephen P. James, M.D., Director, Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition
  • Christopher Koh, M.D., M.H.Sc., Director, Gastroenterology Fellowship Program
  • Sheila Kumar, M.D., M.S., Staff Clinician, Digestive Diseases Branch
  • T. Jake Liang, M.D., Chief, Liver Diseases Branch
  • Jose Serrano, M.D., Ph.D., Director, Liver and Biliary Programs, Division of Digestive Diseases and Nutrition
  • Robert D. Shamburek, M.D., Senior Clinician, Translational Medicine Branch, NHLBI
  • Michael D. Yao, M.D., Staff Clinician, Laboratory of Host Defenses, NIAID

 Quick Facts



Applicants must be board eligible in internal medicine prior to starting the program.  This usually requires that the applicant is either currently enrolled or will have completed a three-year residency in an approved internal medicine training program within the United States.

How to Apply

Applications to this program are submitted via the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) and are handled through the University of Maryland Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. See the UMMC website for application details.

Contact Us

Please contact Beverly Niles by phone at (301) 451-0659 or by email at Beverly.niles@nih.gov with any questions regarding the University of Maryland/NIH Clinical Scholars Gastroenterology Fellowship Program.

Visiting the Digestive Diseases Branch

See NIH’s Visitor Information for NIH campus access guidelines.
The Digestive Diseases Branch main administrative office is on the 9th floor in corridor C (9C-101) of Building 10. The Digestive Diseases Branch clinical office is located on the 5th floor of the NIH Clinical Center (5-2740). You will be asked to show your driver’s license and wear a visitor’s pass.