Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Fellowship

The Andrews Research & Education Foundation (AREF) provides specialized orthopaedic surgical training in all aspects of simple and complex foot and ankle conditions.

Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Fellowship

Program Director: Erik Nilssen, MD

The fellow will be under the direction of three fellowship-trained orthopaedic foot and ankle faculty throughout the 12-month program, with a 1:1 faculty ratio.

The program boasts a robust and well established orthopaedic research program, onsite Surgical Skills Lab, Regenerative Medicine Center, and Biomechanics Lab. The curriculum covers requisite conditions and surgical procedures defined by the AOFAS curriculum guide. The fellow will have the opportunity for practice management, professional development, and financial management lectures throughout the year. 


Mission: To educate orthopaedic surgeons on the medical and musculoskeletal problems unique to athletes at all levels of participation and to graduate physicians who will become advancers in the specialty of orthopaedic sports medicine while providing the highest quality and safest patient care possible.

Duration: 12 months

Positions: 1

Erik Nilssen, MD

Program Director

Dan Murawski, MD


Sonya Ahmed, MD


  • Prepare fellows for competency in a wide variety of procedures for sports medicine

  • Provide opportunities in comprehensive sports coverage and care for elite athletes

  • Fellows are proficient in all six ACGME core competencies.

  • Fellows are confident in decision-making and surgical skills, including establishing treatment algorithms and performing necessary surgical interventions.

  • Fellows learn to balance high volume clinical/surgical experiences, team coverage, and various research/educational opportunities.

  • Fellows become life-long learners and continue to advance medicine through research, publications, and teaching.


  • Perform foot & ankle specific history taking, examinations, interpret diagnostic studies, and evaluation of injuries
  • Provide preoperative and non-operative evaluations and diagnoses
  • Discuss differential diagnoses
  • Prepare preoperative plans and write appropriate orders
  • Prescribe and oversee rehabilitation protocols
  • Document treatment through operative and clinical notes (dictation)
  • Assist and perform surgery on Foot & Ankle procedures both open and arthroscopic
  • Communicate effectively with patients, families, physical therapists, athletic trainers, and other ancillary staff regarding patient
  • Complete standard office, coding and charge forms
  • Participate in clinical conferences, seminars, surgical skills labs, and journal clubs
  • Attend and lecture at Andrews Research & Education Foundation Sports Medicine Conference
  • Advanced arthroscopic and endoscopic technique of the ankle and foot
  • Total ankle arthroplasty, arthrodesis, and other treatments of ankle and foot degenerative joint problems
  • Minimally invasive and open fracture reduction and fixation techniques
  • Deformity correction
  • Current approaches for diabetic limb salvage, including Charcot reconstruction and amputation techniques
  • Limb salvage include the use of hybrid, circular and spatial frame constructs for deformity correction
  • Weekly didactic conferences
  • Monthly Journal Club
  • Quarterly Grand Rounds
  • Professional Development lectures
  • At least one research project, including manuscript submission
  • High school team physician responsibilities
  • Collegiate team physician responsibilities
  • Andrews Institute annual pre-participation physical
  • Physicals for college and high school teams
  • Cadaver lab opportunities
  • Salary: $50,000 annually
  • Benefits include medical, dental, and health insurance options (effective date is first day of fellowship).
    • Options for additional coverages (disability, hospitalization, life) and/or dependent coverage is available. Benefits available can be found here.
  • Professional liability insurance is provided at no cost to the fellow.
  • Parental time, sick time, and leaves of absences are permitted as required by ACGME and Federal Law.
  • No preset of paid time off or vacation – the program allows for doctor’s appointments, bereavement, Jury Duty, mental health appointments.
  • Graduate Medical Education Policies outline specific allowances and expectations
  • Sample contracts can be found here.

Please submit your application for the AREF Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Surgery Fellowship through the SF Match Program,

Program ID #: 4664

Required documents and completed applications must be submitted through SFMatch:

  • Completed and signed Central Application Service (CAS) application forms
  • CAS distribution list and payment
  • USMLE Step 1, 2CK, 2CS, and 3 scores; and/or COMLEX Step 1, 2, and 3 scores for osteopathic applicants
  • Three (3) letters of reference
  • Updated CV (please see SF Match format)

Additional Requirements:

  • Must have completed an ACGME-accredited Orthopaedic Surgery residency in the U.S.
  • Must be authorized to work in the U.S. without sponsorship
  • Must hold an MD or DO degree, no DPM accepted 

Please direct inquiries to: GME Director, at info@andrewsref.org

Foot and Ankle Alumni Testimonials