Our Vision - Pediatric Residency

"The vision of the pediatric residency program at The University of Vermont Children's Hospital in partnership with the University of Vermont College of Medicine is to foster in our residents the highest levels of humanism in medicine, advocacy for children through community, regional, national, and global outreach, commitment to high quality patient and family-centered care and the ongoing pursuit of research and scholarly activities. Core to our philosophy is an emphasis on foundational training, building our residents as teachers and producing competent and autonomous pediatricians who are critical thinkers and practice evidence-based medicine. The close one-on-one relationships and mentoring that is central to our program fosters deep experiential learning, professional development, and a well-rounded education and training that promotes the skills to excel as a pediatrician in any future career – from primary care for a rural or underserved population to the most specialized care in an academic institution." — UVM Pediatrics.

Pediatric Residency Program Leadership

Jill S. Rinehart, MD

Jill Rinehart, MD, FAAP
Program Director

Dr. Rinehart graduated from this residency program and spent twenty years in private pediatric practice in Burlington as a full time community pediatrician, before “coming home” to the Vermont Children’s hospital as the residency program director in 2019. After growing up in St. Paul, Minnesota, she attended Dartmouth College and then completed medical school at the University of Minnesota. Her formative years were spent as the big sister to two younger siblings with complex medical needs. This personal experience helped fuel a passion for family centered care and inspired her national expertise in medical home, care coordination and working with families to improve population health and medical training. She recently completed her tenure as the American Academy of Pediatrics Vermont chapter president. Over the years she’s had the great fortune of having several remarkable physician mentors, most of them established as a result of this residency program. One of the best parts about our program is that you never really leave—you become a part of our family and your success, is our success.

Dr. Amelis Hopkins

Amelia Hopkins, MD
Associate Program Director

Dr. Hopkins grew up in New Hampshire and went to college at Carleton College in Minnesota.  After a year of bioscience research, she attended medical school at the University of Connecticut School and then came to UVM for pediatric residency.  After completing her fellowship in Pediatric Critical Care at the Children’s Hospital Colorado, she returned to Vermont to join the UVM faculty in 2007.  Having trained both here and at larger institutions, she believes strongly in our small program’s ability to prepare pediatricians for careers in primary care, subspecialty pediatrics, or child health advocacy.  Along with the other members of the residency leadership team and faculty, she shares the vision of a training environment that helps residents achieve their careers goals through an academically rigorous, personalized, and family-like environment.

Kenzi Nelson.png

Kenzi Nelson
Program Administrator

Kenzi grew up in a quaint and picturesque Vermont town, within what is referred to as the North East Kingdom. Growing up there has engrained a strong commitment to community, which is sensed by all who visit.  Watching her father work hard and become successful in the ownership and growth of his business, she developed a passion for the intricacies and commitment business management entails. She received her BS in Business Administration in 2011 followed by an internship at a neighboring Community Health Center in New Hampshire. She continued to pursue her interest in the Health Administration field and began working at UVMMC in 2013. She was thrilled to join the Pediatric Residency leadership team in early 2016. Kenzi has a passion for helping others to succeed and focusing on resident wellness. Kenzi, her husband and daughter all love this area, the gorgeous views, and all this state has to offer.  

Headshot of Jessica VanNostrand, MD pediatric chief resident at the UVM Medical Center.

Jessica VanNostrand, MD
Chief Resident

Dr. VanNostrand grew up in a small town in the Adirondacks of New York. She attended Elmira College and received her undergraduate degree in Biology and Business Administration. She then attended SUNY Upstate Medical University, where she enrolled in the Rural Medical Scholars Program. Through this track, she incorporated rural rotations in communities near her home town throughout her clinical years, during which she grew to love serving this population. She also studied in Nicaragua and worked in a pediatric refugee clinic throughout her final year of medical school, instilling a strong interest in global health. Through these experiences, she developed a passion for underserved medicine. She was thrilled to match at UVM for residency to continue to pursue opportunities in both rural and global medicine. Throughout residency, she has worked with New American groups in Burlington and rural populations in surrounding communities. She is incredibly excited to remain at UVM as chief resident to help other residents develop their career passions and find their niche in medicine. She plans to pursue a career in community primary care following her chief year. Outside of work, she explores the beautiful Vermont landscape by hiking, running, and skiing.