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Duke Visiting Elective Scholarship Program (VESP) for URM Students in Surgical Oncology

The Duke Visiting Elective Scholarship Program (VESP) for URM Students in Surgical Oncology is a unique opportunity for Underrepresented in Medicine (URM) students in United States medical schools who are interested in pursuing Surgical Oncology or General Surgery as a medical specialty. 

Students are encouraged to apply who are members of underrepresented racial/ethnic groups in medicine, those who come from rural areas, those who have experienced socioeconomic hardship, or those who are part of the LGBTQ+ community.

About the Elective

Beginning in August 2021, the one-month elective offers longitudinal mentorship from Duke Surgery faculty and current residents. The endowment covers the cost of airfare, room and board for participants (up to $2,000), as well as three years of funding for membership to academic medical societies (up to $250 annually), and cost defrayment for residency applications and travel.

Students will: 

  • Be assigned a resident mentor for student orientation during sub-internship and advice throughout the residency application process.
  • Be assigned a faculty mentor who will meet weekly with the student during sub-internship, and provide advice and recommendation throughout the residency application process.
  • Have one-on-one meetings with:
    • Chair of Surgery, Duke University
    • Program Director, Duke General Surgical Residency Program
    • Residency Advisory Dean, Duke School of Medicine 
  • Attend Duke Surgery’s formal technical skills curriculum. 
  • Receive an invitation to return for pre-intern Boot Camp no matter their choice of location for residency training.

To Apply

Students interested in applying for the elective should contact John Migaly, MD, Vice Chair of Education, (, and Tammy Watson, Program Coordinator ( Application deadline is June 30, 2021.