Student Spotlight

Valerie Martin, OMS I

Class of 2021

  • Hometown: Plymouth, UT
  • Undergraduate Studies: Biology with a minor in Chemistry (University of Utah)
  • Clubs and Activities:

Why did you choose RVU? I was raised on a farm in a small town where we had limited access to healthcare. RVUCOM places great emphasis...
Read More

Faculty Spotlight

Jacquelyn Waller, PharmD, BCPS

Assistant Professor of Pharmacology, Director of Faculty Development

  • Hometown: Craig, CO
  • Graduate Studies: Doctor of Pharmacy (University of Montana); Postgraduate Pharmacy Residency (Sacred Heart Medical Center & Children's Hospital)

What class do you teach? Pharmacology in both the College of Osteopathic Medicine (COM) and Master of Science in...
Read More

RVU Ultrasound Program

The RVU Clinical Ultrasound curriculum integrates the use of ultrasound into all levels of education for students.

Year One:

First-year students have ultrasound sessions paired specifically with their associated dissection labs to facilitate their understanding of anatomy.

  • Sessions Include:
    • Ultrasound Physics and Introduction
    • Musculoskeletal Parts I & II
    • Cardiac Ultrasound
    • Thoracic & Pulmonary Ultrasound
    • Abdominal Ultrasound
    • Head & Neck Ultrasound

Year Two:

Second-year students have ultrasound sessions paired with pathology case discussions to facilitate their understanding of pathologic processes in specific body systems.

  • Sessions Include:
    • Ultrasound Physics and Introduction
    • Cardiovascular Ultrasound
    • Focused Abdominal Sonography in Trauma Ultrasound
    • Abdominal Ultrasound
    • Musculoskeletal Ultrasound
    • Resuscitative Ultrasound

Year Three:

Third-year students have the opportunity to attend training in ultrasound-guided central venous access.

Year Four:

Fourth-year students can participate in clinical ultrasound rotations based on their selected specialty choice.


Meet the Ultrasound Faculty


  • Molly E.W. Thiessen, MD


    Dr. Thiessen is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the Emergency Ultrasound Fellowship Director at Denver Health Medical Center, as well as Director of Clinical Ultrasound Curriculum at Rocky Vista University of Osteopathic Medicine.

    She attended medical school at the University of Kansas, and completed her Emergency Medicine residency  as well as her emergency ultrasound fellowship training at Denver Health Medical Center.  She has a strong interest in point-of-care ultrasound education, and has educated students, trainees and attendings across multiple specialties in POCUS, as well as authored multiple textbook chapters and articles on POCUS.

  • John Kendall, MD

    John Kendall MDDr. Kendall is a Professor of Emergency Medicine at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, the Director of Emergency Ultrasound at Denver Health Medical Center, Director of the Ultrasound Curriculum for the University of Colorado School of Medicine, and Co-Director of Clinical Ultrasound Curriculum at Rocky Vista University of Osteopathic Medicine. He has been practicing and teaching bedside ultrasound for over 20 years.  Dr. Kendall helped develop and implement the ultrasound curriculum at the University of Southern California Emergency Medicine program during his residency training. In 1996, he was hired as the Director of Emergency Ultrasound at Denver Health Medical Center.

    Dr. Kendall has many scholarly publications including the CD-ROM, “Ultrasound in Emergency Medicine and Trauma”, and two textbooks; “Practical Guide to Emergency Ultrasound” and “Case Studies in Pediatric Emergency and Critical Care Ultrasound”.  Dr. Kendall is a former Chair of the ACEP Ultrasound Section and he started the ultrasound fellowship at Denver Health Medical Center in 2005.

Ultrasound Interest Group (USIG)

The Rocky Vista Ultrasound Interest Group pairs with the University of Colorado School of Medicine Ultrasound Interest group.

The group sponsors multiple fun, interactive educational sessions throughout the course of the year from short hands-on sessions to a full day “Ultrafest.”

Follow us on Twitter! @USIG_CO

UltraFest will take place on Saturday, March 18th!

To register, click here:


Colorado USIG hosts the State’s First Ultrafest Event

Ultrasound machines are changing the way doctors examine and diagnose their patients. To prepare for this, the University of California-Irvine hosts Ultrafest every year, a day-long event designed to provide hands-on experience with point-of-care ultrasound. Inspired by the event, Lane Thaut, OMS-IV, and Brian Russ, OMS-IV, collaborated with the faculty at University of Colorado School of Medicine, as well as the Colorado Ultrasound Interest Group (USIG), to host the state’s first Ultrafest.

Held on October 3rd, Ultrafest was attended by over 100 medical students and other health professionals. The event began with two keynote speakers: Creagh Boulger, MD, Assistant Professor of Emergency Medicine at Ohio State University, and Nikita Joshi, MD, Clinical Instructor of Emergency Medicine at Stanford University. The speakers focused on the benefits of ultrasound, presenting real scenarios and sound advice on how and when to suggest ultrasounds to superiors. Following the keynotes, students visited different workshops, including cardiac, ocular, musculoskeletal, and pulmonary ultrasound.

Each workshop included a great student-to-doctor ratio (often 2:1). The presence of volunteers, mostly pre-med students, allowed attendees to scan instead of having to act as patients themselves, which greatly increased the hands-on learning. Corina Kee, OMS-II, said “They had small groups to teach, practice, and provide one-on-one time with all the students. I am much more comfortable using ultrasound now than I was previous to Ultrafest.” The event also included Echogames, an interactive game that uses an ultrasound to diagnose common ailments. Bobby Nieland, OMS-II, added, “Ultrafest was one of the most fun, interactive, and educational activities I’ve done in medical school to date.”

The Colorado USIG will continue to host ultrasound-related events for members throughout the year and is looking forward to hosting Ultrafest again next year.

Read more about the inaugural UltraFest:

Colorado Medical Society article: “Colorado UltraFest”

March 25, 2016: RVU Students Win Third Place in National Ultrasound Competition

The American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine (AIUM) held a competition on March 17th in New York City called “SonoSlam.” This was for teams of medical students from across the country who wanted to compete in games based on knowledge and ability to perform point-of-care ultrasound.

Fourth-year students Abigail Dekle-Russ, Brian Russ, and Lane Thaut represented RVUCOM in the competition, taking third place! As SD Russ said, “This was a big accomplishment for us as we were competing against very strong teams (such as Yale and Penn medical schools). There were nearly 20 teams participating and we were the only osteopathic school. We were proud to represent RVU and take home a win. [RVU is] on the map as leaders amongst medical schools who have integrated ultrasound into the curriculum.”



RVU students SD Russ, SD Dekle-Russ, and SD Thaut pictured above with Dr. Resa Lewis of University of Colorado.