The Ophthalmology Residency program at Wake Forest University School of Medicine is a high-volume clinical program known for its hands-on approach and excellent preparation for the real world.

The program is an ACGME-accredited three-year residency, with four residents at each level, based primarily at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center in Winston-Salem. One third of the clinical training also takes place at the Veterans Administration hospital in Salisbury, North Carolina.

Why Train at Wake Forest?

With a total resident cadre of twelve, our residency is among the smaller programs. However, it remains highly competitive for the best resident applicants for a number of reasons:

  • The high full-time faculty-to-resident ratio
  • The location of faculty and resident working together
  • A busy medical and surgical resident experience
  • The commitment of the faculty to resident education

Almost two-thirds of our graduates have gone on to pursue fellowship training at the most prestigious institutions in the nation.

“I will admit to being biased, but there are just not that many teaching programs that combine the personalized attention and depth of experience found at the Wake Forest program.”

- Timothy Martin, MD, Program Director.


The Wake Forest ophthalmology residency has a well-developed international ophthalmology program.  The "flagship" is a partnership with an eye clinic/OR in Honduras.  Twice a year we experienced send a team of experienced faculty surgeons along with senior residents and fellows for a busy week of cataract surgery at the Lions Club Eye Hospital Fraternidad in San Pedro Sula (8 trips to date).  Both phacoemulsification and MSICS procedures are performed to benefit the poor in Honduras. 

This program is unique, because it takes place in a fully functional eye clinic and outpatient OR, staffed year-round by local ophthalmologists, which insures excellent pre-and postoperative care.  Residents and fellows are taught manual surgery techniques by experts, giving sight to many patients who are blind from cataract. The goal is not only to help restore vision to the poor of Honduras, but to train and inspire our trainees for a lifetime of international service.

This program has also provided opportunities in India and Ethiopia, and is expanding to provide other subspecialty services including glaucoma, retina, and others.

Program Benefits Highlights

As a resident of Wake Forest you will receive:

  • Competitive salary
  • Health, dental, and vision insurance
  • Long-term disability
  • Employee Assistance Program
  • On-call resources (rooms, meals, etc.)
Learn more about the standard benefits available to Wake Forest Residents. Program-specific benefits, if available, can be found on the program application page.