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School of Medicine Columbia

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Student Organizations

Our students are active on campus and in the medical community. It's easy to find a group where you can develop your skills, make connections and give back on a local, national and international level.

Student Organizations

Alpha Omega Alpha (AΩA) is an Honor Medical Society that was founded by medical student William Root in 1902.  The purpose of the organization is to promote scholarship and research in medical schools, to encourage a high standard of character and conduct among medical students and graduates, and to recognize high attainment in medical science, patient care, and related fields.  The charter for the South Carolina Beta Chapter of AΩA was granted in 1983. 

The American Medical Student Association (AMSA), founded in 1950, is the oldest and largest independent association of physicians-in-training in the United States. Today, AMSA is a student-governed, national organization committed to representing the concerns of physicians-in-training. AMSA members are medical students, premedical students, interns, residents and practicing physicians. With a half-century history of medical student activism, AMSA continues its commitment to improving medical training and the nation’s health.

The School of Medicine Columbia chapter of AMSA holds fast to both of these commitments. This chapter is especially dedicated to providing students with the opportunity to pursue causes that they are passionate about. Last year, AMSA traveled to Washington, DC to lobby Senator Lindsey Graham’s office for increased funding to end the global HIV/AIDS crisis. We plan to continue our efforts this year with your support.

On a state level, our organization plans to spearhead two new annual events. The first is a 5k race designed to raise money for a project in need of funding at Prisma Health here in Columbia, SC. The second is to set up a booth at IMAGINE Upstate in Greenville, SC with the intent of getting kids excited about the science and technology involved in medicine. We hope to accomplish this by featuring our top tiered ultrasound program.

In addition to our statewide events, we will host a handful of free lunches where local physicians will come to talk about their specialties, career paths and experiences in medicine. This is your chance to get involved, learn something new, and make an impact. 

AMWA is an organization which functions at the local, national, and international level to advance women in medicine and improve women’s health. We achieve this by providing and developing leadership, advocacy, education, expertise, mentoring, and strategic alliances. AMWA puts on numerous events throughout the school year, including the Men Can Bake Sale, and Girl Scout GEMS events. We also host lunches throughout the school year where women in medicine come and share their experiences and advice with our members. 

AMA is the largest association of physicians - both MDs and DOs - as well as medical students in the United States. The AMA's stated mission is to promote the art and science of medicine for the betterment of the public health. AMA is active in advocacy of legislation that concerns us as students and as future physicians. We travel to various conferences across the country to speak on behalf of our state and our school on this legislation. Outside of the legislative aspect of each conference, we meet fellow medical students and physicians from all across the country. We then go to events held by the conference such as parties, city scavenger hunts, concerts, and more. Some of the places we have traveled to include Hawaii, Washington D.C., Orlando Florida, and Chicago Illinois. Within Columbia, we attend events held by the Columbia Medical Society, such as various dinner parties as well as an annual oyster roast with local physicians. We also host leading physicians in the state to speak at lunches about health care and how they provide the greatest quality of care to patients. Through the children's hospital and with Pediatric Interest Group we have hosted a fun Halloween party for the kids at Prisma Health Children's Hospital - Midlands every year. 

The Saunders Chapter of the Gold Humanism Honor Society recognizes students, residents, and faculty who are exemplars of compassionate patient care and who serve as role models, mentors, and leaders in medicine.  Student members are peer nominated during the second half of their M-III year.

MSA is dedicated to enriching the experience of medical students during their entire four years at USC by promoting student involvement in both community events and in school activities. We host social events throughout the year, including orientation activities, tailgates at all home football games, an annual oyster roast, holiday socials, and more. We also boast an array of subcommittees, which provides students with volunteer and leadership opportunities. Our goal is to foster an environment where everyone can have fun during their time at USC SOMC and everyone stay involved with their school and their community. 

Medical Students for Choice is an international network of medical students who believe that all people have the right to make their own decisions regarding their reproductive health. The USC SOMC chapter of MSFC strives to provide reproductive health education and advocacy opportunities for future healthcare providers. Through our educational activities we aim to demystify reproductive health choices, including abortion, so every student can provide well-informed, compassionate care to their future patients. Through our advocacy work we will help students use their voice to protect reproductive health choices at local, state, and national levels. 

The Student National Medical Association (SNMA) was founded in 1964 as a sub-division of the National Medical Association (NMA). Our chapter at USC School of Medicine Columbia aims to support current and future underrepresented minority medical students in the field of medical education and community outreach. Some of our yearly activities include the Youth Science Enrichment Program (YSEP) at local elementary schools, our annual community health fair as well as connecting with undergraduate students via the Premedical Conference in the fall. 

The Vertically Integrated Trainee Program is a student association that works in conjunction with AED (National Health Pre-professional Honor Society) at USC. We host socials, clinical skills practice, and admissions Q&A sessions, among other events. The purpose of the organization to benefit both parties. 


Student Interest Groups

These groups are available when there is a demand. 

To educate future medical professionals about the disease concept of addiction and to assist them with resources on how to better serve patients in their community with substance use disorders.

Allies of Sistercare strives to assist the efforts of Sistercare in helping victims of intimate partner violence and their children. Allies of Sistercare provides a platform through which students can become involved in volunteering to promote the education and awareness of an issue we might all encounter during our time as physicians. Additionally, Allies for Sistercare aids our Columbia community by providing a steady volunteer force to promote the efforts against intimate partner violence. 

The Anesthesiology Interest Group (AIG) promotes education, communication, advocacy, research, and networking among students and physicians who share a common interest in the field of anesthesiology. We host lunch meetings and events to allow students to further their interest and gain exposure within the anesthesiology specialty. 

The American Women Surgeons’ chapter here at the School of Medicine Columbia is dedicated to providing fun and enriching exposure to surgery, while providing perspective from those who have historically been underrepresented in the field. We host speaker lunches to hear and learn from a variety of surgeons, provide access to a network of mentors, and offer hands on dissection and suturing practice.
*AWS is also a national organization 

The Biomedical Science Graduate Student Association (BSGSA) is an official organization at the School of Medicine Columbia.  It serves School of Medicine graduate students through the improvement of the graduate school experience by fostering a sense of community, facilitating professional development, promoting personal wellness, and serving/educating the greater Columbia area. Anyone in the Biomedical Science Graduate Programs can join, including, but not limited to: PhD, Master’s, Certificate, Prep, PA, Nurse Anesthesia, and Genetic Counseling.

Our organization strives to educate future physicians on the business side of medicine to ensure that they understand the benefits and limitations of the U.S. healthcare system and how they can use this knowledge to provide the best patient care possible. 

The Cardiology Interest Group (CIG) is a student-run organization that aims to help students foster interest in cardiology as a future specialty. Throughout the year, the CIG will host lunch seminars with the field's locally practicing professionals and active researchers. Through these seminars, the CIG will inform students on the career path toward specializing in cardiology, the lifestyle of practicing cardiologists, and the ongoing scientific studies that will influence the future of the practice. CIG hopes that all students interested in internal medicine and its associated specialties will come out to CIG seminars to learn about what this exciting field has to offer. 

CMDA is a national organization that serves to promote Christian community among medical students. We will host physicians throughout the year to discuss the intersection of faith and medicine, as well as their experiences throughout their career. Membership is free and offers tons of opportunities for involvement in regional and national CMDA efforts including conferences, summer clinical internships, mission trips and networking. We are also looking at the logistics of a short weekly or biweekly prayer group just to have some time to talk. Through CMDA, we want to be a source of encouragement throughout the long road of medical school. 

Are you interested in community service? Do you want to organize service opportunities for other students at the med school? Consider serving with COG! We have worked with the Red Cross, Foodshare SC, Transitions Homeless Shelter, Prisma Health and more. We are looking for new leaders to take these partnerships and add more volunteer opportunities they are passionate about!

The Dermatology Interest group strives to provide medical students with information about the field of dermatology, the lifestyle of a dermatologist and subspecialties within the field. Additionally, our goal is to provide members with connections to dermatologists, whether for shadowing or to get involved in research, and to provide members with the opportunity to go to conferences and participate in volunteering related to the field. The DIG plans on having speakers and meeting at least twice throughout the year.

The Emergency Medicine Interest Group strives to provide meaningful educational and clinical experiences to its members about a career in emergency medicine, and to nurture increased interest in the field and impact the specialty has on our community. We aim to provide exceedingly adequate preparation to our members seeking residencies as emergency medicine physicians by exposing them early to the hallmarks of the profession and guiding them to develop a competitive and complete residency application. We will create more hands-on experiences for first and second-year medical students, allowing them time in the emergency room, to gain direct experience through clinical encounters and workshops. We will continue to encourage networking with current emergency medicine attendings and residents, which will allow our members to develop meaningful relationships on a personal and professional level. We also will generate community involvement to provide educational resources in things such as stroke recognition and BP screening to aid n the safety and well-being of our community. 

This interest group is designed for students interested in the field of family medicine. We host lunches throughout the year so students can hear from local physicians and learn about the specialty. We collaborate with several other School of Medicine groups, and we also work with the Family Medicine Clinic to set up procedures workshops for interested students. We also connect students with externships, volunteer opportunities, and more! 

Gastroenterology is quickly becoming a hub for physicians who recognize the importance of lifestyle medicine and preventative care. The field offers a wide variety of opportunities, including a schedule balancing procedural-work and clinic time, the ability to combat epidemics related to diet and gut-health, and a good work-life balance. Our mission is to introduce medical students to the unique nature of this specialty, the impact a gastroenterologist can have on their community, and how one can best pursue the profession. Through engaging members in a variety of ways, we believe the gastroenterology interest-group will help unite and inform students interested in this manifold specialty as to its relevance, impact, and future. 

GMIG is an organization that focuses on global health and outreach. Our aim is to promote student involvement in both the local and global community. We will be hosting lunches with physicians with international experience, hosting outreach events, providing volunteer opportunities with the local Hispanic medical clinic, and finding overseas service trips for students. Ultimately, our goal is to expand students’ interests in the global medical field! 

HEAL is your go-to group for helping you maintain a healthy lifestyle even under the pressures of medical school! We maintain the garden on the School of Medicine Columbia campus, where produce from the garden is used to provide healthy lunches for students. Part of our goal is to supply endless fitness motivation, information about local 5K’s that we participate in as a team, and other fitness events that are posted on our Facebook page. There is a field day in the spring and running club in the works. Plus, we are developing a healthy cookbook with easy recipes for medical students. Hiking, kayaking and camping are just a few of the weekend adventures we like to partake in. At the end of the day, we will help you learn how to take care of your mind and body in order to be successful under stress! 

We want to encourage anyone who thinks they might be interested in infectious disease to join our group. We plan on hosting multiple talks throughout the year related to HIV, Hepatitis C, coronavirus, and various other infectious diseases. We will also plan a panel of ID physicians to come in and discuss hot topics in the field. This will provide clinically relevant education to our members as well as provide opportunities to connect with local specialists. Additionally, we want to further our engagement in the community by volunteering/fundraising for local HIV/AIDS clinics. Through these, we want to encourage students to learn more about this specialty and its relevance in modern-day life. 

Our organization strives to offer the student body an informative view into the modern advances in medicine. Clinicians will present a focused perspective on how medical treatments and technology have changed since they began practicing, and what changes they anticipate in the future. These changes may be evaluated by impact on patient outcome, their effect on the role of the physician, and their implications in specialty development. Presenters who are actively participating in research may additionally share their most recent findings and their clinical correlations. The presentation will be correlated with a range of topics encompassing the present medical field, including the rapidly evolving technology and methods ot surgery as well as the most recent pharmacological, genetic, and molecular medicine developments shaping a majority of patient treatment today. We hope that through these presentations, students may be provided insight into current movements within medicine and may better understand how these movements are shaping the environment in their future specialties of interest. We aim to provide students with the skills to be life-ling learners active in understanding and implementing findings from current research into their practice. We ultimately hope to initiate innovative thought and interest in the applications of academic and clinical research and provide students with an understanding of the current and future environments of medicine. 

This club brings students interested in internal medicine opportunities to hear from practicing physicians in both internal medicine and subspecialties within the field of internal medicine through sponsored lunches (free food!). The speakers provide insight into their daily lives as internists and answer questions regarding their careers. These lunches will allow students to network and possibly set up shadowing with the speakers. We will also be providing hands on opportunities through the simulation lab at Prisma Health Richland Hospital and other workshops throughout the year. 

The Medical Musician Association is an organization that strives to share our musical ability with patients in the local Columbia community to uplift spirits. We also hope to deepen connections between students and encourage healthy stress relief and artistic expression at the USC SOMC through love of music. We put on concerts at the School of Medicine and local hospitals and host social genre nights. We welcome all levels of musicians and music enthusiasts.

The Military Medicine Interest Group gladly welcomes both Healthcare Professions Scholarship Program (HPSP) students as well as non-scholarship students interested in military medicine. Throughout the year, we will host guest speakers who will share their experiences in the military in a question and answer format and will provide lunch to all group members. In previous years, we have had a USAF Brigadier General speak about his experiences in the military health care field. There are social activities for members and we also provide resources for individuals who have signed contracts as well as for those who are interested in serving. 

The Neurosurgery Interest Group strives to connect students interested in pursuing the field of neurosurgery with the information and resources needed to best prepare them for a residency program in neurological surgery. Our organization will aim to connect students to clinicians who can apply our medical school curriculum with clinical applications in the field of neurosurgery, develop a neurosurgery mentorship program, and connect interested students with scientists conducting both clinical and basic science neurosurgery research. 

We would love to welcome anyone that is interested in Obstetrics, Gynecology, or any subspecialty to join us! Deciding on a medical specialty is difficult, and we are dedicated to offering information and opportunities for students that are interested, or think they might be interested in, pursuing OB/GYN. Throughout the year, we will be offering informational sessions with various leaders in the field, volunteer opportunities, networking opportunities, and more. We look forward to meeting all of you and to helping you learn more about OB/GYN! 

The Oncology Interest Group (OIG) aims to kindle student interest in the variety of oncological career opportunities that are available. OIG aspires to integrate guest speakers discussing standard chemotherapy regimens, novel therapeutic technologies, and much more in an attempt to bring to life what we learn in the classroom. Additionally, speakers from a multitude of subspecialties (i.e. - Pediatric Oncology, Surgical Oncology, Radiation Oncology, etc.) will provide insight into the nuances of their daily lives, as well as their journey to get to where they are. Moreover, we seek to promote active engagement in our community through fundraising and volunteer events, research opportunities, and developing meaningful connections with local oncologists. 

The OSMIG leadership team aims to create a welcoming environment that will permit learning of both the field of orthopedics and the field of sports medicine, as many times two can be muddled together. Through various talks and clinics (if possible due to COVID) we will help to facilitate the formation of relationships with various MDs in the communities of sports medicine and orthopedics.  

Our organization strives to introduce medical students to the surgical subspecialty of otolaryngology and serve the community in healthcare matters related to otolaryngology. Through established relationships with USC SOM alumnus in the field and local clinics in our community, students will be given the opportunity to meet willing mentors to guide them in their decision to pursue otolaryngology. Members will serve the community by providing medical education and other healthcare services pertaining to the field of otolaryngology. 

The Pathology Interest Group is dedicated to expanding students' knowledge about career possibilities in pathology. We will help foster an interest in the field by inviting speakers to virtual sessions, connecting students with shadowing opportunities, and building a community of interested students to discuss thoughts and ambitions. 

The Pediatric Interest Group is dedicated to fostering an interest in pediatrics among medical students and providing opportunities to members who are interested in pediatrics to learn more about the specialty. We host lunches throughout the school year and have both general pediatricians and pediatric sub-specialists come to share with our students. We also have a partnership with Prisma Health Children’s Hospital - Midlands where we help with events such as their annual Halloween Carnival. 

Provide students with resources, information, and experiences to learn about and prepare to enter the field of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Students involved will explore the various professional opportunities within PM7R through interactive experiences with rehabilitation professionals and patients. 

The Plastic Surgery Interest Group (PSIG) exists to introduce students to the diverse field of plastic surgery and provides those interested in the profession with the skills and opportunities needed to match in this competitive specialty. PSIG seeks to educate medical students about the field through hands-on clinical workshops, social networking events with residents and faculty, information panels and lectures, and seminars with surgeons from different subspecialties. To ensure prospective students have competitive applications for residency, PSIG will facilitate opportunities for early student involvement in clinical and research experiences. 

Our organization strives to create a welcome space for LGBTQ+ identified students at USC SOMC, educate USC SOMC students, staff, and faculty on issues affecting LGBTQ+ individuals and their health, and to benefit the Columbia LGBTQ+ community through volunteering and programming that is conducive to their needs. 

The University of South Carolina School of Medicine Columbia Psychiatry Student Interest Group aims to foster interest in the field of psychiatry among USC SOMC students while also serving as a choice for mental health and healthcare advocacy within the university and the broader Columbia community. 

The radiology interest group is intended for first and second year medical students to gain an exposure to the field of radiology beyond what is offered in normal preclinical coursework. We will be having speakers present their discipline within the field of radiology in regards to work and lifestyle at least twice a semester to the interest group members in attendance. In addition, we will offer other events such as weekly radiology “scans of the week” with descriptions. 

The Rural Health Interest Group will be hosting lunches and events this year where speakers will present on topics pertaining to rural health. Students will have the opportunity to learn more about the unique healthcare needs for populations in rural areas. 

The Simulation and Clinical Skills Interest Group's mission is to provide first and second-year medical students with hands-on opportunities to experience and develop pertinent clinical skills using high-fidelity simulation and educational workshops in the hopes of building students' confidence before entering clerkships and residency. 

SEAM embraces Mother Earth. We aren't total hippies but close enough. Medicine inherently consumes extremely high volumes of resources, notable single-use items. While this is often unavoidable, what can we do in our own lives to live more consciously? How can we navigate a materialistic society as we become stronger voices for change? What can we do as students to help our community become more environmentally friendly? If you've thought about these questions, pelase consider joining SEAM to help develop actionable answers. 

The University of South Carolina School of Medicine Columbia Student Interest Group in Neurology chapter aims to provide enriching educational and clinical opportunities regarding the field of neurology to USC SOMC students, serve as advocates for neurological health within the broader Columbia area, and inspire greater interest in the neurosciences among medical students. 

The Surgery Interest Group is dedicated to providing medical students interested in surgery exposure to surgical faculty, residents, and area physicians. Members will also have the opportunity to hone their clinical skills under the guidance of USC Department of Surgery faculty during our annual suture workshop. We host several other events throughout the year, including the opportunity for M1 students to purchase their white coats during orientation week, guest speakers from multiple surgical disciplines and more. Lunch will be provided to those who register for guest speaker events. We look forward to meeting everyone who may be interested in surgery! 

The Ultrasound Interest Group at USC SOMC strives to work alongside the Ultrasound Institute to promote awareness of the current usefulness and potential of ultrasound via innovative and interactive programs at USC SOMC to engage the prospective and current student body, the Columbia area, and the greater medical community. 

We provide opportunities for students to explore wilderness and survival medicine and connect with other USC SOMC community members who share a love of the outdoors

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.