How to Apply — Visiting Students

Key steps

  1. Apply to VSAS
  2. Complete your application at least 30 days prior to the elective start date
  3. Pay your $100 application fee after accepting the elective offer in VSAS

Visiting medical student applications for the 2019-2020 academic year will be accepted beginning May 1, 2019. Spaces will be offered beginning May 8, 2019.   

To be eligible for a visiting student rotation, students must be enrolled in an LCME-accredited institution located within the United States. Due to limited available space in our elective courses, no off-block rotations are permitted, and visiting students may complete no more than 12 weeks of elective rotations at WUSM.

Washington University in St. Louis uses the AAMC’s Visiting Student Application Service (VSAS) to receive and process visiting student applications.

Students who have accepted an offer in VSAS must confirm participation in the elective by submitting the $100 application processing fee (non-refundable) via online credit card payment, check, or money order, payable to Washington University School of Medicine. Online payment instructions will be provided to students with the VSAS offer.

Applications must be completed no later than 30 days prior to the elective start date, and incomplete applications will not be processed. Prospective visiting medical students are advised not to contact WUSM departments or faculty members, as all visiting student enrollments are coordinated by the Electives Office. Due to a high volume of inquiries at this time, only email communication with the Electives Office is preferred.


The Electives Office is happy to help.

Additional application requirements and opportunities

Orthopedic Surgery Externship

Please note that students interested in the orthopedic surgery externship must contact Heather Robinson before submitting a VSAS application. Contact Ms. Robinson by email at, and visit the Department of Orthopedic Surgery website for more information about the Orthopedic Surgery Externship Program.

VSAS applications submitted for the Orthopedic Surgery Externship without prior approval from the department will be denied.

Plastic Surgery Externship

The Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery independently pre-screens all applicants for this externship.

Before applying to VSAS, students must submit the following documents to the program coordinator, Stephanie Martino, at

1. USMLE transcript or Step 1 Score Report (Step 1 score is mandatory)
2. Current CV
3. Brief letter stating why you are applying for a visiting medical student rotation with our program, and whether or not you are interested in being considered for the Washington University Plastic Surgery Integrated Residency Program

Once the materials have been received, they will be reviewed by the division and the applicants will be informed of their acceptance once a decision has been made. Once an applicant has been approved, he/she will need to apply online through VSAS where he/she will be scheduled accordingly. Questions regarding the Plastic Surgery Externship may be directed to Ms. Martino at or 314-747-0541.

VSAS applications submitted for the Plastic Surgery Externship without prior division approval will be denied.

Office of Diversity Programs Visiting Elective Program

Students interested in participating in the Visiting Elective Program through WUSM’s Office of Diversity Programs (ODP) are encouraged to visit the office’s website to learn more about the program’s visiting student offerings and application process. Students must apply to the ODP Visiting Elective Program at least four to six weeks prior to the desired elective start date, and must also complete WUSM’s standard visiting student application requirements.

Department of Surgery Diversity Sub-Internship Program

The Department of Surgery at Washington University in St. Louis welcomes applications to our Diversity Sub-internship Program intended to increase underrepresented minority interest in academic surgery. The Program will provide accepted sub-intern students with a four-week rotation at Washington University between July and October in General Surgery or any of its subspecialties.

The Program will provide campus housing adjacent to the rotation site, as well as a $1500.00 stipend to help offset the cost of flights, fees, and incidental expenses.


The Diversity Sub-Internship Program is designed to give students with a diverse background the experience of rotating as a surgical sub-intern at Washington University in St. Louis Department of Surgery. The sub-intern will function in the role of a surgical intern and will be required to attend all conferences including core curriculum, morbidity and mortality conference, rotation-based clinical case conferences and simulation lab experiences with the house staff.


The Program is open to applicants who belong to groups that are recognized as historically underrepresented in the health profession including African American, American Indian, Alaska Native, Hispanic American and Pacific Islander and/or LGBTQIA. The sub-internship is four weeks in duration and will only be offered between July and October. Students must be enrolled in their final year of medical school in good academic standing at an LCME-accredited medical school, and have completed all required core clerkships. Students will be accepted into clinical rotations only if space is available during the preferred time period. In addition, all students must meet requirements set forth by the Washington University School of Medicine for all visiting students by submitting a completed VSAS application within the 30-day deadline.


A brief statement of interest (250-word limit), one letter of recommendation, curriculum vitae, USMLE scores, a photo, and a recent unofficial medical school transcript should be submitted by May 15, 2019 via email at


WUSM does not have an existing shadowing or observership program for medical students or graduates. Observing may be possible in some areas, but the requirements are determined and coordinated by individual departments or divisions.