Each year it’s different, and always a delight. A source of much anticipation, Dr. Neil Feldstein’s graduating resident tribute picture began as a way for the pediatric neurosurgeon to honor residents in his own style. It has since become a tradition of more than two decades—and counting.
Every year, a dinner is held to honor graduating residents, and every year Dr. Feldstein unveils his creation. The picture is kept closely guarded until the dinner, when Dr. Feldstein ferries a set of them in, professionally framed and carefully wrapped for each graduate.
“Everything is very hush-hush,” he says. “That is the first time anyone sees it.”
Upon revealing the picture at the dinner, he talks about each resident and how he came up with that year’s theme.
This year, he presented the tribute picture to graduating chief resident Dr. Jonathan Yun, who now practices at Neurosurgeons of New Jersey. The picture blends Dr. Yun’s last name with a famous quote from the 1980s movie “Highlander”—“There can be only one.” The result—”There can be only Yun”—is fitting, as Dr. Yun was the only graduating resident this year.
In his office, Dr. Feldstein keeps a framed copy of every tribute picture, two dozen in all. As he says, “It helps me remember the residents. It’s also nice when I go into the office of a graduated resident, who is now an attending somewhere, and see my artwork on the wall. All doctors have a montage of their diplomas, from college and medical school and residency, up on their walls, but these are unique. It is something that is a keepsake.”