Physicians Medical Forum
Visiting Elective Scholarship Program (VESP)
at the University of California, San Francisco

The Visiting Elective Scholarship Program (VESP) supported by the Physicians Medical Forum (PMF) was established to encourage fourth-year medical students who are underrepresented in medicine and are interested in working and conducting research with diverse populations to apply for a fourth-year clinical elective offered through the School of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). PMF’s mission is to encourage the recruitment and retention of Black/African American physicians and thereby help to eliminate health disparities, improve access to care, maintain diversity within the profession, and improve the quality of life and medical care for people in the Oakland/San Francisco Bay Area of California. The visiting elective scholarship program is designed to:
  • Enhance the recruitment of Black/African American medical students to residency training programs in the Oakland/San Francisco Bay Area with the ultimate goal of remaining in the area to practice medicine.
  • Expose Black/African American fourth-year medical students who are underrepresented in medicine to an academic training program
  • Promote student interest in applying to an academic training program
  • Promote interest in clinical and translational research
  • Provide mentorship during the clinical elective experience
Clinical electives are four weeks in length and are available, space permitting, to U.S. medical students. VESP participants are assigned a faculty advisor and have the opportunity to network with UCSF faculty, house staff, students and PMF physicians. A diversity dinner with faculty, house staff, and PMF physicians is held during each rotation. In addition, all participants are invited and encouraged to attend various seminars including monthly Medical Effectiveness Research Center for Diverse Populations (MERC) seminars and department grand rounds. Students will also have the opportunity to participate in workshops and training programs offered by the UCSF Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI). VESP participation is not affiliated with the UCSF residency match program and participation in the program does not guarantee a residency program interview.

Who Can Apply?

  • Black/African American fourth-year U.S. medical students who are underrepresented in medicine are especially encouraged to apply.
  • Student must be in good academic standing at an accredited US medical school
  • Requirements for the UCSF school of medicine’s clinical electives must also be met
    • 4th year standing
    • Completion of all core clerkships in medicine, surgery, pediatrics, psychiatry and OB-GYN


Note: Both UCSF and PMF Vesp applications must be completed.


Scholarships (up to $2,000 each, to be used toward visiting student elective fees, transportation costs and lodging) will be awarded on the basis of:

  • Academic achievement as indicated by transcripts, letters of recommendation, etc.
  • Leadership
  • Interest in serving underserved populations (community service)
  • Interest in remaining in the Oakland/San Francisco/Northern California Bay Area to practice medicine
  • Interest in pursuing an academic career in Emergency Medicine, Family Practice, Ob-Gyn, Pediatrics, Psychiatry, Radiology, Surgery, Urology and other specialties


Rolling deadline. Applications must be received 6-8 weeks prior to the elective start date. However applications received less than 8 weeks may be considered.


More Information

For further information or to receive an application, please contact:

PMF Visiting Elective Scholarship Program
Stalfana Bello, M.P.A., Executive Director
Physicians Medical Forum


Edward Cruz, MD, M.P.H., VESP Director
UCSF Office of Graduate Medical Education

Also visit the following websites

UCSF School of Medicine Visiting Student Info:

UCSF Office of Graduate Medical

Nurturing Diversity at

Sponsor Levels

Presenting Sponsors: $25,000

Title Sponsors: $15,000

Champion Sponsors: $10,000

Benefactor Sponsors: $5,000

Individual Title Sponsors: $1,500

Individual Champion Sponsors: $1,000

Table Sponsors: $2,750

Ticket(s): $275, $500 or $1000 each per person (depending on level)

Individual Tickets for students: $275, $500 or $1000 each per person (depending on level)