Student Spotlight

Zoya Sandhu, OMS I

Class of 2022

  • Hometown: Salt Lake City, UT
  • Undergraduate Studies: Biology
  • Clubs and Activities: Member of Medical Students Advocating for Underprivileged Populations (MSAUP) and Women in Medicine Club.

Why did you choose RVUCOM? I chose RVU because of the amazing board scores. I feel like I will be completely prepared for whichever...
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Faculty Spotlight

Cheryl McCormick, PhD

Associate Dean for Integrated Curriculum
Professor of Physiology

  • Hometown: Reidsville, NC
  • Undergraduate Studies: Bachelor of Science degree in Biology at Salem College. Bachelor of Science degree in Medical Technology from Medical College of Virginia.
  • Graduate Studies: Doctor of Philosophy degree in Pharmacology/Physiology and a Postdoctoral Fellowship in Clinical Chemistry from Wake Forest University.

What classes do you teach? I teach Renal I and II, and IHL I. Why did you choose to...
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Institute of Medical and Surgical Simulation

20150804_1stSurgeryRotation_RVU (38)Institute of Medical and Surgical Simulation

RVU’s Institute of Medical and Surgical Simulation is a clean, open space, dedicated to learning surgical skills. In this 1,000 square foot space, students practice gowning, gloving, sterile technique, knot-tying, suturing, intubation, ultrasound, and cricothyrotomy. Additionally, they participate in rounds and student presentations.

Cut Suit

RVU owns five full-size cut suits (as well as several partial cut suits), the first medical school in the country to utilize this technology. The cut suit is a lifelike, wearable bodysuit that simulates trauma to the body. The suit contains blood-filled arteries, a pumping heart, lungs, and all other organs. Each suit has many interchangeable parts and organs, depending on the type of injury to be simulated. This allows students to practice surgery in the most realistic possible way, as the suit produces the accurate look, feel, and even smell of what students would experience in actual surgical scenarios. Through the use of the cut suit in our curriculum, our students graduate with more surgical experience and confidence.

Additionally, the cut suit is often used in simulated disaster scenarios. This course, called the Intensive Surgical Skills Course immerses the student doctors–as well as real-life physicians, military personnel, and emergency responders–into realistic scenarios, helping them use their medical skills and knowledge while under high stress. This course, along with the cut suit, won Military Training Technology’s 2015 Best Program Award.


RVU’s Institute of Medical and Surgical Simulation has the distinction of being recognized as a Focused Accredited Education Institute (AEI) by the American College of Surgeons. It is the only osteopathic medical school (and one of two medical universities in the Mountain West Region) to receive this accreditation.


20150804_1stSurgeryRotation_RVU (33)Required Surgical Simulation Course

As of August 2015, there is a new required surgical simulation course for third-year students. This was created after finding that students who participated in RVUCOM’s elective Intensive Surgical Skills Course performed better on their core surgery rotations, learned surgical skills better, and approached their surgery rotations with less apprehension. In the course, students learn scrubbing, gowning, gloving, sterile technique, suturing, knot-tying, recognition of instruments, surgical use of ultrasound, and invasive techniques such as endotracheal intubation, chest tube insertion, and cricothyroidotomy.


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