VERMILLION, S.D. — The University of South Dakota’s medical school is taking a different path than the university’s law school and staying where it is due to a significantly high number of applications.
The university’s Sanford School of Medicine is seeing more applicants than it has available seats, the Press and Dakotan (http://bit.ly/2tc1JcV ) reported.
Medical school Dean Mary Nettleman said that more than 850 people apply for the school, but most of the applicants don’t have South Dakota ties and aren’t considered.
“Some students do meet our minimum standards for qualification (for acceptance),” she said. “But they need to brush up on their qualifications before they would be someone who is likely to enter the class. Not every one of those 200 would be a slam dunk to get into medical school. There is no doubt that there are some times where we would turn away good doctors.”
The school’s strict admission standards require medical students to have strong state ties, which include graduating from a South Dakota high school, having a parent living in the state or being a member of a Native American tribe in or bordering the state.
The school interviews about 200 students before each school to fill about 71 open seats. Of those seats, two are given to MD or PhD students and two are given to Native American students through a grant.
The school currently has no plans to expand but is looking into expanding opportunities for students.
“In medical school, there is a lot of what we call ‘experiential learning,'” Nettleman said. “You have your classroom learning, but then you also go out and work with patients directly.”
Unlike its medical school, the university’s law school is looking into the possibility of moving to Sioux Falls due to low enrollment.
Information from: Yankton Press and Dakotan, http://www.yankton.net/