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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

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 “Mustache Movember,” 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. 

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 USCSOM and everyone stay involved with their school and their community. 

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. 


Student Interest Groups

These groups are available when there is a demand. 

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.

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. 

The Christian Medical Association exists to connect interested students with physicians who exemplify Christian faith in their practice. We sponsor lunches to encourage students in their education and life and host speakers so students can hear from these providers about their path to practice. Furthermore, CMA promotes mentorship opportunities between faith-driven physicians and USC medical students. 

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.

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! 

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! 

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. 

USC intramurals are organized by the undergraduate campus. These games are a fun way to blow off some steam and socialize with new people during the year. There are numerous sports in both semesters, including football, basketball, soccer, dodgeball, softball, volleyball and more. The intramural office at the Strom has the full list and students are encouraged to join a team to represent the med school. Students are welcome to join a team or to come cheer for the Scrub Squad (Class of 2019)! 

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 Minority Affairs Committee plans and implements measures to increase the number of students from groups under-represented in the medical profession who are prepared for, recruited to, matriculate at, and graduate from the School of Medicine and who continue their training in residency programs throughout the state of South Carolina.

Committee membership is comprised of USC School of Medicine faculty and students, clinicians at area hospitals, educators from South Carolina colleges and universities (mostly HBCUs) and community leaders.

The Student Interest Group in Neurology (SIGN) facilitates student exposure to the specialty of neurology. We host lunch meetings throughout the year allowing for students to interact with speakers from both clinical and research backgrounds. 

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 Ophthalmology Interest Group serves to expose pre-clinical medical students to the field of ophthalmology. The interest group meets between two and four times a year. Unfortunately, lunch is not provided, but the quality of the speakers more than makes up for it! Slit-lamp labs have been organized in the past and are a goal for the current leadership. The small group size allows interested and driven students to become easily involved with leadership, make connections with physicians in the field, and participate in research opportunities related to the field. 

OSMIG is a group of individuals interested in orthopedic surgery and sports medicine. This group promotes learning of the sub-specialties and hearing from those that work in different aspects of this field. Throughout the year, OSMIG hosts: 1) discussions led by orthopedic surgeons and residents and sports medicine attending physicians and residents, 2) activities involving ultrasound of the extremities and joints, and 3) other hands on activities that will help to explore the fields of orthopedic surgery and sports medicine. 

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. 

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 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 Journal Club promotes student interest in research by providing a platform to discuss and present various topics. We host meetings throughout the year, which include student presentations, information about research opportunities, and speakers discussing current research topics. 

“Alone we can do so little. Together we can do so much.” The Volunteer Committee is dedicated to providing students with opportunities to serve the Columbia community. We host blood drives throughout the year, including the Carolina-Clemson Blood Drive, which raised over 6200 pints of blood in 2015. We collaborate with local homeless shelters, soup kitchens, and we provide students with information on local, national, and international service opportunities.

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.