Extracurricular Learning

At Washington University, some of the most important learning takes place outside of the formal curriculum, through participation in student-initiated, student-run organizations. Students have created more than 50 such groups to address real-world issues on local, national and global fronts and to pursue interests outside of medicine. More than 70 percent of our students participate in one or more organizations.

The faculty, deans and alumni take great pride in and enthusiastically support these endeavors, which represent invaluable opportunities for personal growth and outlets for personal expression, fulfillment and satisfaction. Participating in these activities, students cement life-long friendships, refine their leadership skills in real-life venues and translate medical insights within broader community settings.

Visit the Office of Medical Student Affairs website for a complete student group listing.

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Service to others

Our students are committed to making a difference in their community, a drive that takes multiple forms. Many efforts aim to improve health outcomes in the community directly and are effected through student organizations such as

    • The Saturday Neighborhood Health Clinic
    • Community-based screening for hypertension and diabetes
    • Early childhood developmental screening among underserved groups
    • Advocacy for preventive health measures and regulation (SPOTS)
    • Fundraising for community groups such as Big Brothers Big Sisters
      and The American Heart Association (the Red Dress Affair)

Medical interest groups

More than a dozen specialty interest groups allow students to explore their interests in individual medical specialties. The groups feature opportunities for shadowing, interacting with senior faculty, participating in departmental functions and more.

Public health

For those interested in pursing public health outside of formal degree programs, several student groups and research opportunities are available. Visit the Public Health page of this website for details.

Global health

Global health is a major interest of our student body and the institution as a whole. Visit the Global Health page of this website for details on overseas and research opportunities.

Advocacy and mentoring

Other groups work with young people in the community providing educational assistance, illuminating pathways to careers in science and medicine and all along the way demystifying and assisting. Examples include

Avocations: music, arts and letters and more

Our medical students find time to continue enjoying their talents and interests outside of medicine, including, art, music, athletics and more. Visit the Office of Student Affairs website for details.