Meet Our Transitional Year Residents

Class of 2019

Matthew Arffa, MD

Matthew Arffa, MD

Medical School: Loyola University

Specialty: Dermatology at UT Austin Dell

Career Goals: To be a compassionate physician providing top-level care to my patients while also contributing to my field through research and other scholarly activities.

What I like about MacNeal: Everyone at MacNeal is passionate about what they do , are wonderful to work with, and are very supportive. MacNeal's transitional year program also provides me with a variety of experiences, such as the Medical Spanish elective, which will help me prepare for my future residency training and my career.

Outside Interests: I am an avid cyclist, outdoor enthusiast, and dog-lover. Having been a member of an improv troupe in college, I'm a fan of comedy (especially the improv theaters in Chicago). Most importantly, I'm a fan of classical music and enjoy watching my wife, a pianist, perform around the city.


Rebecca Edwards, MD

Rebecca Edwards, MD

Medical School: Northwestern University

Specialty: Ophthalmology at the University of Colorado

Career Goals: I am interested in practicing ophthalmology as a physician-scientist at an academic medical center.

What I like about MacNeal: I love Chicago and wanted to have one last year in the city before I move for my advanced residency. I like that MacNeal's transitional year curriculum is flexible and lets me pursue electives that interest me, including a month in Japan!

Outside Interests: Cooking, skiing, reading, and traveling.


Edwarda Golden, MD

Edwarda Golden, MD

Medical School: University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health

Specialty: Diagnostic Radiology at Johns Hopkins Hospital

Career Goals: I would like to practice radiology at an academic medical center, and to serve in both clinician and educator roles.

What I like about MacNeal: I love Chicago and I knew that I wanted to spend a year near friends and family before moving out East for my radiology residency. I like that MacNeal's transitional year curriculum has a variety of electives including a research month that I am spending at my home institution. I also really enjoy the people I work with here, both from the transitional year class and other residencies at MacNeal.

Outside Interests: Working out; baking; traveling; hanging out with friends, family and my two dogs.


Benjamin Jang, MD

Benjamin Jang, MD

Medical School: University of Kansas

Specialty: Radiology at Yale University

Career Goals: Practicing clinical and comprehensive interventional radiology at an academic medical center, developing devices, and creating novel minimally invasive interventions.

What I like about MacNeal: Diverse friendly residents and great elective choices (month dedicated to research or medical Spanish)! I also wanted to live in a city like Chicago before moving to New Haven.

Outside Interests: Boxing, learning Spanish, eating, and spending time with my loved ones.


Samantha Jenkins, MD

Samantha Jenkins, MD

Medical School: University of Louisville

Specialty: Dermatology at West Virginia University

Career Goals: 

What I like about MacNeal: 

Outside Interests: 


Cosette Joy, MD

Cosette Joy, MD

Medical School: Loyola University

Specialty: Dermatology at John H. Stroger Hospital of Cook County

Career Goals: I hope to practice dermatology in an academic medical center, and have thought about pursuing a fellowship in pediatric dermatology.

What I like about MacNeal: I like that MacNeal offers such a wide variety of electives for residents, which ensures that we get to explore our many interests within medicine. However, what I like most about MacNeal are the amazing people we get to work with!

Outside Interests: Reading, cooking, and exploring the city of Chicago.


Adjin Kobic, MD

Cosette Joy, MD

Medical School: Mayo Clinic

Specialty: Dermatology at the Mayo Clinic

Career Goals: My plans for the future are to practice dermatology at a major academic center.

What I like about MacNeal: MacNeal’s transitional year program offers a wide range of elective opportunities that can be tailored to your future specialty. Additionally, the attendings are friendly, approachable, and they care about your educational experience.

Outside Interests: Reading, cooking, and exploring the city of Chicago.


Charles Marcus, MD

Charles Marcus, MD

Medical School: University of Illinois Chicago

Specialty: Anesthesiology at Stanford University

Career Goals: 

What I like about MacNeal: 

Outside Interests:


George Polson, MD

George Polson, MD

Medical School: Baylor College of Medicine

Specialty: Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at Baylor College of Medicine

Career Goals: I will be pursuing a career in Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation. Where exactly only time will tell!

What I like about MacNeal: A great working environment that balances a nurturing, community like atmosphere alongside a structured and educational training curriculum.

Outside InterestsQuality time with friends and family, sports, and the TEXAS LONGHORNS!


Lucas Sage, DO

Lucas Sage, DO

Medical School: Midwestern University, Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine

Specialty: Radiology at the University of Illinois Chicago

Career Goals: I am pursuing a career in Radiology and am undecided as to subspecialty and private practice vs academics.

What I like about MacNeal: I chose MacNeal because I wanted to stay in Chicago and I heard good things about the hospital from many of my medical school classmates who rotated here. The program also made a strong impression during my interview day and has turned out to be a very welcoming place to spend my intern year.

Outside InterestsGolf, basketball, current events/politics, and snowboarding.


Mohammed Siddiqui, MD

Mohammed Siddiqui, MD

Medical School: Kansas City University

Specialty: Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Temple University

Career Goals: 

What I like about MacNeal: 

Outside Interests


Claire Smith, MD

Claire Smith, MD

Medical School: The University of Chicago

Specialty: Ophthalmology at the University of California, Los Angeles

Career Goals: To be an ophthalmologist, researcher, and writer.

What I like about MacNeal: I love the camaraderie between the residents, and am excited to have the chance to do an elective in Medical Spanish.

Outside InterestsHiking, biking, reading, and writing (I have a book of poems coming out)!


Paras Vakharia, MD

Paras Vakharia, MD

Medical School: Oakland University

Specialty: Dermatology at the University of Texas Southwestern

Career Goals: I plan on utilizing my medicine and pharmacy backgrounds to practice dermatology with a focus on systemic diseases, while conducting clinical trials and drug development, and overseeing pharmacovigilance research.

What I like about MacNeal: I love the attending physicians who not only provide great education, but also provide numerous hearty laughs on rounds. Lastly, the camaraderie among residents is second to none. My most enjoyable moments are goofing off in the resident lounge with my fellow residents.

Outside InterestsTaco Bell! Amateur food connoisseur, fitness, dad jokes, rooftops.


Kevin Veverka, MD

Kevin Veverka, MD

Medical School: Mayo Clinic

Specialty: Dermatology at Marshfield Clinic

Career Goals: I hope to practice dermatology in a community setting, where I am able to work-up a wide variety of patients, pathologies, and procedures.

What I like about MacNeal: Being from the suburbs, it is nice to return to Chicago before heading off again. I was drawn to MacNeal for its broad curriculum, with strong inpatient clinical experiences alongside a wide array of electives, which allow you to pursue your interests. What sealed the deal was the collegial atmosphere and great group of (potential) co-residents, and it sure did not disappoint!

Outside InterestsSpending time with my pets, hanging outside (while it's warm), and gallivanting the city and suburbs.


Kurt Zacharias, MD

Kurt Zacharias, MD

Medical School: University of Kansas

Specialty: Interventional Radiology at the University of Chicago

Career Goals: I hope to practice dermatology in a community setting, where I am able to work-up a wide variety of patients, pathologies, and procedures.

What I like about MacNeal: Love living in the Chicago area and coming to work every day at a warm and friendly place. The TY year in particular allows for a lot of flexibility and includes amazing opportunities such as an international rotation and a good selection of electives.

Outside InterestsMusic, travel, and exploring Chicago.


Haziq Zahir, DO

Haziq Zahir, DO

Medical School: Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, Bradenton

Specialty: Diagnostic Radiology at John H. Stroger Hospital of Cook County

Career Goals: 

What I like about MacNeal: Friendly atmosphere with great co-residents and awesome faculty. Snacks in the resident lounge. Close proximity to Chicago.

Outside InterestsMusic, travel, and exploring Chicago.