Public Resources

Download your free copy of the AWS Pocket Mentor e-book - made possible through support of OnSurg and CovidienPocket Mentor

The AWS Pocket Mentor is a handbook that was developed to ease the transition from medical student to resident to surgeon. Based upon the experiences of a number of women surgeons and written by the members of AWS, this resource provides information about the basic educational strategies required to excel as a surgical intern or resident.

Presented in partnership with Covidien, the AWS Pocket Mentor is now available for free to the public in several versions:

AWS is grateful to the support of Covidien and OnSurg, and the talents and insights of the AWS members who helped make the AWS Pocket Mentor possible. We hope it continues to provide support for surgeons around the world and to make the passage from student to surgeon easier.

Career Development Resource

Many young surgeons lack adequate mentorship to guide them in their chosen career path, creating a need for a general reference on career development. One of the goals of AWS is to provide a reference containing fundamental information and contacts with regards to developing a successful surgical career. Click here for more information and access to the CDR.

AWS Membership Survey Distribution Policy

AWS receives frequent requests to survey our unique and valuable membership. To ensure we don't overwhelm our members with these requests, we have established a survey policy and application process. We charge a nominal fee to cover the costs of evaluating and disseminating the surveys. Click here for more information and a survey request form.

Sexual Harassment Resource Manual

AWS has created a compilation of reference information on sexual and gender harassment issues. The folder includes background on the historical development of sexual harassment law, definitions of legal terms, strategies for handling personal attacks, and techniques for managing situations that may arise. A bibliography, list of telephone numbers, the AWS Statement on Sexual Harassment and sample harassment policies from the AMWA and AAMC are also included.

The Sexual Harassment Resource File Binder is available from AWS for $10 each. To order a copy of this information, click here. The latest revision of the Manual is available in the Members Only section of the Website.

Family Leave Policies

Two Family Leave Policies have been developed by the Association of Women Surgeons: one for Practicing Surgeons and one for Residents

While these documents are specific to maternity issues, it is the intention of AWS that the information be incorporated into a broader family leave policy. They are provided as a guideline, emphasizing that surgeons and residents are entitled to a reasonable maternity leave policy. At a minimum, maternity leave policies should be in compliance with already existing federal policies and laws regarding family leave, thus providing a policy that allows flexibility for the expectant surgeon or resident, while maintaining quality standards of the profession.

Code of Conduct

Revised in July 2003, AWS participated in drafting additions to the ACS "Statements on Principles" (proposed by the Committee on Women's Issues and the Association of Women Surgeons). Click here for the resulting Code of Conduct document. Click here for a PowerPoint presentation with background on the development of the Code of Conduct.


In 1999, AWS collaborated with the National Institutes of Health to produce a 24-minute video entitled Women Are Surgeons. This video is targeted at young girls to encourage them to enter the field of surgery. By planting the seed early, we can encourage girls to take math and science courses throughout their schooling, so that all career options are open to them. To view the video on YouTube, click here. To order free copies of this video (with brochures), click here.

Three Firsts: Women Pioneers In American Surgery -- This 55-Minute video documents the lives and careers of three women pioneers in American surgery: Alma Dea Morani, MD, the first female plastic/reconstructive surgeon, Nina Starr Braunwald, MD, the first female cardiac surgeon and a deputy NIH director, and Olga Jonasson, MD, a leader in the American College of Surgeons and the first female chair of an academic department of surgery. To order copies of this video, click here