Our Alumni, Justin Gillenwater while he was an Operation Smile Fellow.

Tsao Global Surgery Fellowship



This Pediatric Global Health Fellowship is organized through USC's Department of Reconstructive Surgery, USC's Institute for Global Health, Operation Smile and The Shriners' Hospital for Children, Los Angeles. The purpose of the fellowship is to train leaders who will further promote surgical care, education, and research pertinent to global reconstructive surgery. Fellows will develop academic, clinical, and administrative skills in global surgery, clinical and public health research, and humanitarian aid. The two-year Fellowship will focus on developing research skills necessary to assess and improve surgical programs in resource-poor settings. Fellows will spend substantial time delivering surgical services and conducting research in low- and middle-income countries around the world.


  1. Train leaders in global reconstructive surgery with a background in research.

  2. Advance the specialty of reconstructive surgery in resource poor settings.

  3. Contribute to humanitarian relief and delivery of surgical care in conjunction with Operation Smile.

  4. Develop and implement clinical and public health research to improve operative outcomes, efficacy, cost effectiveness, and sustainability of reconstructive surgery programs.

Duration: 24 months Curriculum: Divided between: (1) Master of Science in Clinical and Biomedical Investigations, (2) Research, and (3) International surgical care and management.

  1. Masters of Science in Clinical and Biomedical Investigations
    Fellows earn a Masters of Science in Clinical and Biomedical Investigations from the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California. Obtaining the Masters will take between 12 - 18 months depending the way the program is tailored to the individual fellow. Variances in time are dependent on how much time the fellow spends at international sites.

  2. Research
    Fellows conduct clinical and public health research related to delivery of surgical care, surgical disease burden, operative outcomes, efficacy, cost effectiveness, and sustainability. Fellows will be expected to gain experience writing grant proposals and submitting papers for publication. Research mentorship will be provided through faculty associated with the USC Institute for Global Health and the Department of Preventive Medicine.

  3. International Surgical Missions
    Fellows will spend time at multiple sites around the world where Operation Smile is carrying out surgical care missions. Fellows will gain firsthand experience in reconstructive surgical care delivery, primary data collection, clinical and research program management, public health, and international capacity building.

The Masters of Science in Clinical and Biomedical Investigations is a joint effort to train medical students, fellows or health professionals, including faculty and other scientists conducting clinically-related research, in clinical research methods to translate clinical, biomedical and technological discoveries into advances in population-based, clinical or basic science research. Various tracks are offered, depending on research interest of applicant, including Patient-oriented Translational, Research Community Based Intervention Trials, Design, Conduct, and Analysis of Clinical Studies, Epidemiology and Disease Etiology, and Health Outcomes Research.

The MS program in Clinical and Biomedical Investigations is designed to train students for future independent research careers in an academic, government or private sector setting. The objective of the MS program is to produce a clinical researcher with statistical and analytic skills in population-based, clinical studies or outcomes research. The program gives students a solid background in the methodological aspects of research, and in statistical thinking as applied to molecular epidemiology, as well as a solid grounding in biostatistical, epidemiology methods.

Graduation requires the completion of a minimum of 29 units, of which a minimum of 15 units (3-4 courses) are didactic course credits taken in the first year (including summer sessions), with the remaining units being directed to mentor-supervised research and thesis taken in the second year. The equivalent of one year of full-time effort must be devoted to research leading to a master thesis. The thesis provides a structure for the development of a plan to address a research problem and a suitable approach to the analysis and presentation of the results. Because the background and interests of applicants varies widely, one to two members of the Program Oversight Committee will consult with each student prior to the first year in order to design an individualized schedule of recommended courses. At the end of the first year, the trainee must submit a final program plan to the Program Oversight Committee. This will summarize the courses taken, the proposed thesis title, and the names and credentials of the MS Thesis Committee. One of the members of the MS Thesis Committee will be the trainee's research advisor and will serve as the chair of the committee. At least one member of the Thesis Committee must be from outside the student's department.

Fellowship Director William P Magee III, MD, DDS: wmagee@chla.usc.edu

USC/Operation Smile


MAY 17-20, 2016




Faculty Directors

Drs. Joseph Carey, T. Justin Gillenwater, William P. Magee

Instructors / Lecturers

Drs. Hammoudeh, Howell, Swanson, Schooler, Clancy, Tan, Seruya, and USC Plastic Surgery Residents



We are pleased to announce the hosting of an international educational course for plastic surgical trainees to be held at the USC surgical Simulation laboratory, May 19th and 20th, 2016.

In keeping with our divisional dedication to global outreach and surgical education, we have 23 international plastic surgery residents and attendings for a 2 day course simulating plastic surgery procedures.

The course mission is to allow these trainees exposure to experts in the fields of surgical reconstruction of the extremities, head and neck , and trunk. Additionally, this course offers an opportunity for open discussion of pathology and patient care that will allow for exchange of information across international boundaries.

The course will consist of didactic and laboratory portions, with lectures being focused on techniques and outcomes. The laboratory will focus on anatomical dissection with specific case simulation on fresh tissue specimens. Small group sessions will encourage solving plastic surgical case examples in a hands-on fashion while learning techniques to take back to their clinical practices.


MAY 19th, 2016

Thursday AM: Head and Neck

8 AM: Welcome/ Introduction: MAGEE/CAREY

830-9: Facial Fractures exposures HAMMOUDEH

9-915: Facial Reanimation HOWELL

915-930: Palatal Fistulas MAGEE/SWANSON

945-1200: Lab I head and neck, Trauma exposures, Palate dissection/ Face Flaps/Scalp Flaps ALL AVAILABLE FACULTY


Thursday PM: Lower Extremity/Breast

1-130: Proximal/Middle Third LEG: CAREY

130-145: ALT and Thigh Flaps: SCHOOLER

145-2pm: Implant based breast reconstruction CLANCY

2-215: Pressure sores GILLENWATER

2-5 PM: All faculty Leg/Thigh Flaps/ Pressure sores/ Breast ALL AVAILABLE FACULTY

MAY 20th, 2016 

Friday AM: Trunk / Abdominal Wall 

8-830 TAP flap, Latissimus, Pec TAN

830-9 Abdominal Wall CAREY

9-930: Hand flaps/ SERUYA

930-12 Laboratory Chest/Abdomen/hand ALL AVAILABLE FACULTY

Mending Kids Mission Trips

Mending Kids, Hometown Mission, Los Angeles, CA