The Visiting Student Interview Trip (VISIT) program matches USD Sanford School of Medicine fourth-year medical students with alumni volunteers during residency interviews in the region and across the country. Alumni volunteers provide lodging for medical students in their homes as well as offer invaluable advice about the regional medical community in which they are visiting. It is a great way for our students to connect with alumni and share their experiences while reducing expenses related to travel.
If you are interested in participating in the VISIT program, please fill out the appropriate form with your information:
For more information, please contact Nicole Plesec in Alumni Relations at (605) 357-1586 or Nicole.Plesec@usd.edu.
Information for Students
If you are interested in using the VISIT program, the first thing to do is complete the Student Registration Form and share the details of when and where you’ll be traveling, your contact information and any other information that might be helpful when finding a host for you.
The Alumni Relations office will then contact alumni in that area and try to find an available host during your visit. Contacting busy physicians sometimes takes a bit of time so be patient with us in finding a host. It is also helpful if you give us as much lead time as you can to find a host. We will do our best to match you with someone who is in the same specialty you are interviewing in, but in many cases, matching the specialty may not be possible.
Once a host is identified, we will share their contact information with you. It is then up to you to promptly give your host a call to share the details of your travel, your interview plans and arrange your stay. After you return from your interview, you need to send a thank you note to the alumnus who hosted your stay expressing your gratitude for their generosity.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who are the VISIT volunteer hosts?
All hosts are USD Sanford School of Medicine alumni.
Is my spouse able to stay with me?
Many hosts welcome spouses so please note the request on your registration form.
Can I stay with a host alumni for more than one day?
Absolutely! We will work with our alumni volunteers to best suit your travel needs.
Where are hosts available?
We have alumni across the country and are growing our alumni database of volunteers.
What can I expect from the host?
We simply ask the alumni hosts to provide overnight accommodations in their home for you. Some hosts may go above and beyond by offering transportation to and from interviews and airports, providing home cooked meals, guided tours of the area and invaluable professional insight on the regional medical community and your prospective medical center (these are all bonuses and should not be expected).
How do I sign up to utilize the VISIT program?
Fill out the student registration form to let us know when and where you will be traveling. We ask that you let us know about your travels as soon as possible so we can have time to contact and find a host for you. Alumni Relations will begin outreach to find an available host and will do their best to match you with someone who is in the same specialty and/or working at the same medical facility.
Do I contact the alumni host?
Once the host is identified, you will be provided with the alumnus’ information. It is then up to you to promptly contact your host and share the details of your travel and interview plans and arrange your stay.
How far in advance should I contact my host?
Contact your host as soon as you receive their contact information. Provide them with your mobile number and email contact information. It is also a good idea to follow up prior to your visit.
What do I do if my travel or interview plans change or get cancelled?
We understand that plans change and it is very important to contact your host as soon as possible. Also, please inform the Alumni Relations staff of the change. If you need to reschedule for that location, we would be happy to work with the volunteer to see if the date change works or look for another alumni volunteer if the new date should not work.
Do I need to do anything after returning from using the VISIT program?
Yes, we ask that you send a thank you note to the alumnus who hosted your stay as soon as possible to show your gratitude for their hospitality. Please take a photo with you and your host, and share with the Alumni Relations staff, so we can use it to promote the program to our alumni. We also ask for a brief statement of value of this experience to be shared with the Alumni Relations staff.
How many requests can I submit for the VISIT Program?
You may submit a request for each interview trip but keep in mind that you may not be matched for every city.