Career & Leadership Development

Vanderbilt-Sewanee Undergraduate Research Experience

The V-SURE program is designed for pre-med students to get both research and physician shadowing experiences during the summer. Once accepted, students have the opportunity to do two consecutive summer experiences. Each summer experience will consist of a minimum of eight weeks on Vanderbilt’s campus followed by a mandatory poster presentation of their research. Students will have the opportunity to interact socially and academically with the students participating in other Vanderbilt Summer Science Academy (VSSA) programs.

Students will select a research project in an area of interest to them from a menu of mentored options. This project may be either clinical or basic biomedical science. Additionally, students will be paired with a physician and will round with hospital-based general medicine residents one morning per week. Students will attend weekly meetings to discuss the patients they see on rounds, learn about the process of medical education, and discuss issues on health care.

In addition, students will attend weekly VSSA Wednesday Seminars and Monday Enrichment Sessions. Students have the option of attending all social activities of the VSSA as well as the GRE Prep course.

Program participants will be required to attend on-site HIPAA and blood-borne pathogen training prior to beginning their clinical experiences.

The program provides housing on campus as well as a $3400 stipend.

Eligibility Requirements

The program is open to rising junior students who should be willing to spend the summers between Sophomore/Junior and Junior/Senior years at Vanderbilt. Students of an underrepresented-in -medicine ethnic background are strongly encouraged to apply.

Students should have a GPA of at least 3.2 and have completed 1 year of Organic Chemistry (CHEM201/202) or Physics (either 101/102 or 103/104) and be enrolled or have completed Biology (BIOL233) by the time they participate in the program.

Preference is given to candidates with prior research experience and advanced science courses.

Students should have a strong desire to pursue an M.D. degree or a M.D./Ph.D. degree.

Application Procedure

The application deadline is FEBRUARY 1. Applicants should either submit to TigerNet or hand deliver to Career & Leadership Development:

  • A resume;
  • A statement of interest clearly explaining your reasons for pursuing the program and how you expect your experience to impact your career plans. (This can be addressed to the V-SURE Selection Committee, but remember that this statement is more of an ‘essay’ than a ‘cover letter’, so you could even just start writing it without a salutation if you prefer.);
  • A one-page transcript (Obtained from the Registrar’s Office – do not wait until the last day to request!);
  • Letters of recommendation from two faculty members. One faculty member who writes a letter for you MUST have had you in a lab setting.