MED 2014 Updates

A Message from the Director

Hello MED Participants!

Greetings from VIA. With August rapidly approaching, we wanted to provide you with several important updates and reminders regarding MED 2014. Please be sure to read this message carefully and thoroughly, as it contains useful and time-sensitive information. On a related note, don't forget to check your email regularly in the coming weeks as we will be in touch with important updates about shadowing assignments, dormitory life, and other program logistics.

As always, feel free to contact me or a member of the MED team with any clarifying questions or concerns.

Best regards,

Ellison Weeks

Medical Programs Director

Clinical English Lessons with Dr. Takayuki Oshimi

This summer, we are incredibly fortunate to be joined by Dr. Takayumi Oshimi, Assistant Professor of English for Medical Purposes (EMP) at Nihon University School of Medicine. During the program, Dr. Oshimi will conduct lessons on oral case presentations, medical consultation skills (USMLE Step 2 CS), and history taking. In addition, he will be providing brief reviews on the medical English we learn each day.

Dr. Oshimi has a Bachelor of International Relations from Ritsumeikan University, studied for his Doctor of Medicine at Asahikawa Medical College, and obtained a Postgraduate Diploma of Translation and Interpreting from Macquarie University. As a board member of the Japan Association for Health Care Interpreting in Japanese and English, Dr. Oshimi has been involved in various projects and activities in the field of health care interpreting, including designing training programs, organizing seminars, editing newsletters, translating medical materials, editing, proofreading, and writing for several publications.

Assistant Program Director - Sherry Chen

It is my pleasure to welcome Assistant Program Director Sherry Chen to the 2014 MED team. Sherry is currently a rising second year graduate student at the Monterey Institute of International Studies (MIIS), pursuing a dual Master's degree in International Education Management (IEM) and Public Administration (MPA). She will work closely with me and the coordinators to help ensure that you have a fun, exciting and academically enriching experience at Stanford this summer. Many of you may have seen her self-introduction on Facebook, and can reach out to her there. She can also be reached via email at


  • Reminder that immunizations are DUE by 7/14/2014. We highly encourage all immunization documents to be submitted by the deadline whenever possible! Documents must be scanned and sent to by the due date.

  • Use English-language documents if possible. For immunization records written in your native language, please make sure that key parts (date and name of each vaccine, for example) of your document are translated into English.

  • Prior to submission, please double check that the scanned documents are easy to read and professional. Remember, hospital staff will be reviewing them.

  • Please read the Immunization Guide carefully to avoid any mistakes! Have you checked to make sure your titers have a number value AND your immunity level (positive/partial/negative) is clearly stated?
  • If you are experiencing difficulty in meeting the requirements mentioned above or outlined in the Immunization Guideline, then it is VERY IMPORTANT that you contact me to discuss your individual situation and make alternate arrangements for submitting your documents in as timely a manner as possible. Failure to do so could limit our ability to obtain clearance for you to shadow a physician this summer.

Travel Insurance

You are required to purchase travel medical insurance in order to participate in MED. Please make sure you purchase medical insurance BEFORE departing from your home country, and bring a copy of your documents with you. You do not need to send us an email copy of your proof of insurance. Remember, you cannot purchase travel insurance once you arrive in the U.S.

What to Pack for Your Trip

As you consider what to bring with you to California this summer, please resist the temptation to overpack! We recommend limiting your luggage to one suitcase and one small bag only. Washer and dryer are free to use during your stay at Stanford, and laundry detergent is complimentary. For a complete list of useful items to bring, please refer to the orientation handout or feel free to contact Sherry Chen at with any clarifying questions.

Weather in Stanford and San Francisco

Please keep in mind that there is a big temperature difference between San Francisco and Stanford. Temperatures in Stanford hover around 24º - 33ºC during the day and drop to around 15ºC at night. San Francisco, on the other hand, tends to be MUCH colder and foggier than Stanford, with average temperatures ranging from 10º-20ºC.

Don’t forget to pack a jacket or sweater for chilly evenings.

Preparing For Your Presentations

You should be currently working on your two presentations: one to introduce your medical school, and one to introduce yourself. If there is more than one student joining from your school, please work on the medical school presentation as a group. These presentations should be limited to 5 minutes in length, be conducted in English and stored on a USB drive for easy access. Since presentations will be delivered during the first few days of the program, it is highly recommended that you arrive to Stanford with your individual and school introductions already completed. Please refer to the presentation guidelines for more information. Should you have any additional questions, do not hesitate to contact me or Sherry via email.