UCLA medical students find out where they'll practice on 'Match Day'

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Corey Moore/KPCC

Peony Liu, 26, of Orange County (center) was matched with her top choice of UCLA to pursue a residency in pediatric medicine. She posed with friends she called her "best supporters."

This is a big day for thousands of medical students in the Southland and across the country. They find out what hospital they’ll spend their residencies. At UCLA, there are some very excited future doctors.

At times it felt like a college football game – cheers, applause, picture-taking and about 150 medical students rooting each other on as they learned where they’ll be practicing medicine.

It started with a breakfast. After that, students received their small white envelopes, wasting no time in tearing them open and reading their acceptance letters in front of family and friends.

One student I spoke to got her top residency choice – she’ll practice pediatric medicine at UCLA.

Another who’s been president of his class since his second year of medical school said he has mixed emotions. He’ll head out in a few months to study with a program at Harvard in Boston. Not his top choice, but he says a great place to practice. He’s looking forward to it.

Some students I spoke to mentioned that the challenges of health care in this country make them more passionate about their medical careers.

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