TABLE OF CONTENTS
Chapter 1: Relocating to USUHS
Chapter 2: Arriving at USUHS
Chapter 3: Student Affairs
Chapter 4: Military Affairs
Life in Uniform at USUHS
Service Related Benefits
Chapter 5: Academic Issues
Chapter 6: Spouses and Significant Others
Chapter 7: Personal Lifestyle Information
Chapter 8: Who's Who and What's Where
Congratulations on your acceptance to medical school and welcome to USUHS!
You will soon be assuming new and challenging academic responsibilities, but that doesn't have to
be an overwhelming experience. As you settle into medical school and adjust to your new
surroundings, you'll probably have questions about many things, such as where to check in, what
are the services you are entitled to receive, what is the military environment here, how tough are
the academics, and a number of other things. You will find that you can successfully integrate
yourself into the demanding curriculum and lifestyle with little personal discomfort. This booklet
is designed as an informal guide to provide you with some important information as you
successfully transition from your present status to that of a medical student and a medical officer
candidate. While we can't anticipate all of your questions, we have tried to give you a head start on
dealing with the changes facing you by providing some basic information.
Although we hope this guide will be an invaluable resource, it is not intended to take the place of
TALKING to appropriate members of the School's staff and faculty who have the answers to many
of the questions you might have. The staff and faculty are the University’s greatest strength, and
they want to be an integral part of your medical school experience. Please introduce yourself to
them and seek their advice whenever you have a question or problem. By all means, use the
resources of the Office for Student Affairs (301-295-3185) (www.usuhs.mil/osa/osa.html) and the
Office of the Commandant/Company Commanders (301-295-3722); both offices are located in the
Student Community Center in Building C.
Again, welcome to the USUHS family and we look forward to seeing you!
William T. Wittman, Ph.D.
Assistant Dean for Academic Support Services
RELOCATING TO USUHS
The purpose of this chapter is to provide information that will be helpful to you as you relocate
to the Washington, DC, area. The information comes from a number of sources, including a
number of housing referral offices at installations in the area. It also includes the insights of
students and spouses who have recently shared your upcoming experience and who offer tips
they found particularly useful when they arrived. The information should give you a good start
as you plan your move and actually get settled into this area.
If after reading the chapter you still have questions, contact the housing offices listed below or
call someone in the Office for Student Affairs. They share our goal--to make your move and
transition as uncomplicated and enjoyable as possible.
Housing Referral Office (301) 295-6564
National Naval Medical Center (NNMC) DSN: 295-6564
www.bethesda.med.navy.mil (800) 358-6301
(The NNMC Housing Office should be the first point of contact for ALL
students, regardless of service, to learn more about the local housing.)
Housing Office (89 CES/DEH) (301) 981-5166
Andrews AFB MD 20331-5000 DSN: 858-5166
Family Housing Office (410) 672-4570
Fort Meade MD 20755-5115
(DSN stands for the Defense Switch Network, or autovon system, a long-distance
telephone service available at military bases worldwide.)
Army, Navy and Air Force students should make moving arrangements through the
transportation office at the nearest military installation. Even if you plan to move yourself, you
must contact a transportation office before you leave in order to be reimbursed for your
All students, regardless of service, should refer to the Joint Personal Property Shipping Office,
Washington DC Area (JPPSOWA) website at www.belvoir.army.mil/jppsowa. Click on the
link for Counseling and be sure to check out the, "It's Your Move" pamphlet. This pamphlet
addresses issues that are specific to a military move, but also offers suggestions helpful to
anyone facing a move. Every service family has its own set of moving tricks, but here are a
number you will want to consider (or reconsider) as you plan for the move.
1. They are YOUR belongings--don't let the packers or movers convince you otherwise.
Watch them carefully; if you don't like the way they packed something, ask them to do it over.
2. You must allow the packers to pack your breakable items if the moving company is to
insure them against damage. A box will be considered "packed by movers" if, after you pack
the box, the mover inspects and seals the box.
3. Make sure all of your belongings are marked with a number and recorded on the
inventory sheet created by the movers.
4. The movers will inspect your furniture before they move it and note any damage.
Don't let them mark down damages that aren't there. Look very carefully at the agreement
before you sign it.
5. Hand carry some emergency items (i.e., kitchen items, bathroom items, clothing).
You can't be sure when your goods will actually arrive at your new home, even though you
may be given a specific date.
6. Develop a personal inventory of your property and hand carry this when you move.
Take photographs or create a videotape inventory of any particularly valuable items (e.g.,
artwork or furniture). This is a good idea not only for losses due to moving, but is helpful for
insurance purposes if you ever experience a loss from fire, flood, theft, etc.
7. You may purchase extra insurance beyond what the government offers to cover your
belongings. You should move photographs and items that cannot be replaced and any other
8. You will be given a telephone number of a government moving inspector at both
ends of your move. If your movers don't respond to your requests (this includes not packing
things the way you want or insisting on marking damages with which you disagree) call the
HOUSE HUNTING TRIP
Many students prefer to make housing arrangements before arriving for school in August.
This will probably require a house-hunting trip. Contact the housing office before you plan
your trip and take advantage of the temporary lodging facilities or discounted rates at several
of the very nice hotels nearby; see page 6 for "Temporary Quarters."
RENTING VERSUS BUYING
Your decision to rent or buy will depend on your tastes, needs, and financial status. Here are
some thoughts as you consider what is right for you.
Buying. Housing costs in the area are high and it may require two incomes to qualify for a
home loan. Buying also brings with it certain financial outlays: move-in costs, initial fix-ups
costs, maintenance and repair expenses, taxes and fees, utilities, selling costs if/when you
decide to move. On the other hand, mortgage interest and property taxes are deductible items,
so in some cases a buyer will actually be paying less than a renter who cannot deduct any part
of the rent payments. Once the investment is made, there is the satisfaction of being in control
of your surroundings. Also with buying, there is the POSSIBILITY of benefiting from rising
values; historically, this has been a high-appreciation area. Rates are currently low, so not only
are payments relatively low, but rates are attractive for someone else to assume the loan later.
Because of the closing costs on the buying and selling end, it is not usually worthwhile to buy
unless you will be keeping the house for several years; some people choose to buy and keep the
house as a rental, with hopes of returning to the area in the future. Consider all of these factors
when deciding to buy.
You are eligible to apply for a VA loan after 180 days on active duty; depending on the current
loan rates, you may want to pursue that option or choose another kind of loan. A positive
feature of a VA loan is that it allows the buyer to use a higher percentage of his or her income
to determine loan eligibility; always remember, however, what is "allowable" and what is
"comfortable" may not be the same, depending on such factors as a second income, family
expenses, savings, etc.
If you choose to buy, you will have many houses, townhouses, and condominiums from which
to choose. A rule of thumb for the area is the farther away you live, the more you'll get for
your money. The housing office's listing of available properties might be useful, as are the
classified ads in the local newspapers and a listing from a Realtor (you pay no Realtor fees on
the buying end).
A program to aid you in purchasing a home is the Montgomery County Moderately Priced
Housing Program. Currently, Montgomery County MD law requires any development
(housing, townhouse, apartment) with fewer than 50 units to have 12- 15% designated as
"moderately priced units". These moderately priced dwelling units have controlled prices for
10 years. Within that time, units must be rented or resold for pre-determined prices, with
increases due to appreciation and renovations. Later, units may be sold for market value and
prices will go up. In order to qualify, you must be a Montgomery County resident. There is
no time limit to apply and you can move into temporary quarters or housing during the
application process. Maximum income requirement based on family size. For more
information see www.montgomerycountymd.gov.
This program involves purchasing a new home, a resale home or a rental. The Program lists
vacancies (resales and rentals) weekly on the phone or in the office. The application is a simple
two page form for income verification and number of family members (though they require old
tax information current pay stubs suffice for proof of current income when you enter active
duty). For more information, please contact the Montgomery County Moderately Priced
Housing Program at (240) 777-3705. www.montgomerycountymd.gov.
Renting. Generally, the renter has more flexibility, less capital outlay, less cash tied up, and
less responsibility for maintenance. Renters can also change "partners" more easily and more
quickly than owners can do.
If you choose to rent, you also have a wide range of choices in houses, townhouses,
condominiums, and apartments. Again, the housing office and newspapers, as well as the
university's bulletin boards are good sources of rentals. Some Realtors will help you with
rentals, but many shun them since their commissions are lower. Housing offices maintain a
"black list" of apartment complexes, management companies, and builders that the installation
has had problems with or does not recommend.
Normally rentals will require the first month's rent and a security deposit (equivalent to up to
two-month's rent) at the time of move in. Often landlords who allow pets will require an
additional deposit and perhaps a cleaning fee when you vacate. Pay particular attention to the
wording regarding lease expiration. Be careful of leases which provide that if you do not give a
certain number of days notice of intent to move prior to the lease expiration, you agree to
renew the lease for another FULL year. Also, be aware of penalties that may be charged should
you find it necessary to break the lease.
If you are planning to purchase at a later date, you may wish to request that a house-buying
clause be put in your lease. This clause allows you to break your lease if you buy a home,
provided you abide by the specific stipulations written in the clause. Insist that a "military
clause" (sometimes called a "government clause" or "diplomatic clause") is part of the rental
contract; this will allow you to break the lease without penalty if the government decides to
move you. Read the lease carefully and find out before you sign about your other expenses
and those that the landlord will pay (i.e., maintenance and repairs, utilities, etc.). For your
protection, let the housing office or the University's Office of the General Counsel (301-295-
3028) review your lease before you sign it.
While property owners will have insurance to cover the residence itself, it is also important for
YOU to have insurance to cover your household goods. A renter's insurance policy will cover
damage to or loss of your personal property caused by fire, flooding, freezing and bursting of
pipes and water heaters. Policies are relatively inexpensive and, considering what you have to
lose, a very good investment.
HOUSING COSTS AND ALLOWANCES
The Washington, DC, area can be very expensive and a rule of thumb is the closer to the
university you live, the more you will pay. If you have a family, you'll need a larger place to
live, and that can be costly in the immediate area; however, within a half-hour commute you
can find larger places to accommodate you. You must balance the cost vs. location trade-off:
how much are you willing to pay and how far are you willing to travel?
Remember, when you are talking cost of housing, mortgage or rent is not the ONLY payment
you'll be making. There is insurance (either home owners' or renters'), utilities (gas, electric,
water and sewer, and trash), and perhaps additional expenses (possibly a homeowners'
association fee, cable television, or taxes). You will be able to live nicely on your salary and
entitlements, but know what you're getting into and plan ahead!
As detailed in Chapter 4, your salary will include a non-taxable housing allowance--a Basic
Allowance for Housing (BAH). This will vary depending on your dependents. The following
examples reflect the 2007 rates. For more information, refer to
0-1 with or w/o dependents BAH
New to service or prior service officer,
with no dependent(s) $1524.00
New to service or prior service officer,
with dependent(s) $1820.00
Prior service enlisted (over 4 years),
with no dependent(s) $1524.00
Prior service enlisted (over 4 years),
with dependent(s) $1820.00
Again, these figures may vary with your particular prior service experience. Check the above website for
While the Washington, DC, area can be overwhelming at first, it won't be long until you are
getting around like a native. An important first step is getting a good area map. Detailed
county and city maps are available at local bookstores, convenience stores, and newsstands;
often Realtors have up-to-date map books they can provide. An area map of Maryland is
included in the welcome packet accompanying this booklet.
Students and staff live all over the Washington area: most in Montgomery County, but many
others in surrounding counties of Maryland and Virginia. Areas immediately surrounding the
University--Bethesda, Chevy Chase, and Kensington--are older, well established, and relatively
safe areas, but they can be quite expensive; there are few apartments in these areas. More
reasonably priced areas that offer a good mix of houses, townhouses, and apartments include
Rockville and Silver Spring. The Gaithersburg, Germantown, and Olney areas offer newer
houses and townhouses, and are within the magic 30-minute drive time.
APPLYING FOR MILITARY HOUSING
Military housing (referred to as "on-base housing" by Navy and Air Force personnel and "on-
post housing" by Army personnel) is available to military students at some of the military
installations in the area. On-base living puts you in a safe community close to frequently used
military services (exchanges, commissaries, hospitals, daycare, etc.) and with other military
families. Some people appreciate that environment, while others prefer living out in the
One negative about on-base living here is the distance to USUHS. Most USUHS students who
live on base do so at either Ft. Meade (Army, Navy, and Air Force students) located about 25
miles away or Andrews AFB (Air Force students) located about 25 miles away. While both
commutes are on major interstate freeways, they will take an average of 30 to 60 minutes each
way, depending on traffic, and many of the students living there will carpool each day.
Contact the housing offices at these bases to obtain information on how long of a wait there is
to get in and how to apply for base housing.
Should you decide to live on base, you won't, of course, receive a BAH in your pay. But neither
will you receive any utility bills, since the government pays for these.
Whether visiting the area for house hunting or just getting into town for school, you may want
to consider the relatively inexpensive temporary quarters located at and maintained by most
military installations in the area. The temporary quarters you and your family will be eligible
to use include Guest Houses (GH) and Visiting Officers' Quarters (VOQ). Their prices and
maximum lengths of stay vary with facility, and it is best to reserve well in advance.
The closest of these to USUHS is the Navy Lodge, on the grounds of NNMC and a block from
the University. First priority for reservations is to family members of in-patients at the
hospital, but newly arriving service personnel have second priority; you may reserve a room by
calling (301) 654-1795 or (800) NAVY INN (toll-free) two months in advance. The GH and
VOQ at WRAMC, also relatively close to USUHS, works on the same priority system. Several
other military temporary quarters in the area and their phone numbers are listed on the
Andrews AFB, Camp Springs MD GH/VOQ (301) 981-4614/4624
Bolling AFB, Washington DC GH/VOQ (202) 561-2558
Fort Belvoir, Alexandria VA VOQ or (800) 295-9750
Fort Meade, Odenton MD GH (301) 677-5884 or (800) GO ARMY1
Fort Myer, Arlington VA VOQ (703) 696-3576 or (800) GO ARMY1
Washington DC Navy Lodge (202) 563-6950 or (800) NAVY INN
WRAMC--Main Post, Washington DC Malone House (202) 726-8700
GH (202) 726-8700
Military Officers will work through the Joint Personal Property Shipping Office (JPPSO),
located at Fort Belvoir, VA, just south of Washington, DC. This is the military transportation
office servicing this area and is where your household goods will arrive. Contact that office
(703-806-4900 or 800-762-7186) when you arrive and let them know where you can be reached.
As soon as your household goods arrive, JPPSO will contact you and, if you have your housing
available, the goods can be delivered directly rather than be offloaded and put into temporary
storage; this, of course, avoids significant delivery delays and wear and tear on your
belongings. If the goods must be put into storage, you will need to make arrangements to have
them delivered once you are ready to move into your new residence. You may even find it
advantageous to call several weeks before arriving in the local area and set up a date for move
in if you know exactly when you will arrive and where you will be living. When you contact
JPPSO be patient and persistent; the phones are always busy and you may be on hold for a long
time even after you get through to the office. The numbers above should help you; since it may
be a long-distance call from where you are staying, use the phones in the Student Community
When your belongings are delivered, be certain that every item listed on the inventory has been
brought into your home before signing for them; if items are damaged or missing, note those
on the forms that the movers will have you sign. The movers are to unpack your belongings if
you wish; some families prefer to do this at their leisure, but the movers must do it if you wish.
If you find that any of your belongings have been lost or damaged during your move, pick up
from the University's Office of the General Counsel, copies of the government claims forms to
be reimbursed for the loss or damage. Follow through on this immediately. It takes some
effort to fill out the lengthy forms, but it is well worth it to receive the money to which you are
Hopefully this and the following information will make your relocation an enjoyable
experience, with minimum hassles. Let the personnel in the Office for Student Affairs and the
Office of the Commandant know if you need further assistance during the move or settling in
to the area.
ARRIVING AT USUHS
Your matriculation at USUHS and the School of Medicine will begin in Early August, following
your service-specific orientations (discussed briefly in Chapter 4).
The Military Personnel Office, located in Room C1016, will in-process most officers between
7:30 AM and 1:00 PM and again between 2:00 P.M. and 4:30 P.M. on the dates indicated on
your government orders. HAND CARRY YOUR SERVICE RECORDS FROM YOUR
PREVIOUS BASE OR SERVICE-SPECIFIC ORIENTATION; MILPO will collect these records
on your first inprocessing date. Use the other days during this period getting settled into the
area. Once orientation begins, the tempo of activities greatly increases.
There will be a military inprocessing week from 13 August through 18 August. The academic
orientation begins on Monday 20, August, and runs through noon on Friday 24, August. You
will receive a schedule of orientation events when you in-process. Briefly, orientation serves as
an excellent opportunity for USUHS and the School of Medicine to introduce you to the people
who and services which will assist you through medical school. Specifically, it is a time to meet
senior members of the administration, learn about your schedule, hear of the support and
extracurricular activities available to you, receive your textbooks, and be welcomed formally
into the university family. We invite spouses to attend some sessions. The introductions to the
University Health Center and the University Reception on Thursday afternoon are particularly
interesting for the family to attend.
Throughout this time, the Office for Student Affairs will be the focal point of your smooth
transition into medical school. If you have any questions related to the transition, please visit
the office; the staff there will be happy to help you.
The Office for Student Affairs is one of several areas under the direction of the Associate Dean
for Student Affairs. While the Student Handbook will spell out in considerable detail the
philosophy and full range of services this office offers you, we will highlight here the areas of
NEW/RETURNING STUDENT ORIENTATION
The Office for Student Affairs develops and directs the new student orientation for first-year
students and the shorter orientation program for returning second-year students. The former
in particular is a quick but comprehensive look at the medical school program, with the
emphasis on making your transition to USUHS a smooth and orderly process. The program
provides answers to the important "who," "what," "when," "where," and "how" questions, and
identifies people here who will further facilitate the transition. You will receive a detailed
orientation schedule when you check-in at the University.
COUNSELING AND GUIDANCE
The Office for Student Affairs will often be your first stop for help in dealing with a host of
questions or problems you might encounter over the next four years. The Office is well
equipped to provide guidance on matters as diverse as "How can I study more effectively?" to
"Where is a good but moderately priced Tex-Mex restaurant in town?" to "Can someone help
me as I decide on a medical specialty?" The office maintains an outstanding referral network--
inside the university, at other military installations, and within the community--to assist you in
getting answers to questions.
Medical school can be trying at times and sometimes you just need to talk. Many students will
experience personal setbacks on their long road to becoming a physician; these might be the
result of undue stress, study skills problems, academic difficulties, or personal problems.
Having difficulty is not a sign of failure, and we invite you to walk in and let us know if you
have questions or concerns. The Student Affairs staff is well qualified to assist you or they will
know of others who can deal more effectively with your particular area of need.
HOST AND SPONSOR PROGRAMS
Most of you participated in the Host Program when you interviewed at USUHS and all of you
are participants now in the Sponsor Program. You, too, will have the opportunity to both host
and sponsor in the coming two years. As you may have already experienced, the host program
is a nice opportunity for a visitor to learn a little more about the University from the important
perspective of a student who is in the program; the sponsor program, similar to programs
throughout the military services, puts you in touch with someone who can answer some of
your questions as you prepare to relocate and get settled in the area. Consider participating in
these useful programs while here.
The Office for Student Affairs serves the vital function as your "message center." We will
gladly accept phone messages for you while you are in class, leaving these in the distribution
boxes in the Student Community Center. It is your responsibility to check these boxes
frequently, as it is often the most effective means of passing to you important information. We
advise students with small children to please have a cell phone or pager so that you can be
reached in the event of an emergency.
Telephones located in the Student Community Center are for student use. Please exercise good
judgment in the length of your calls, as MANY students with LITTLE time need to make
MANY calls. Several of the phones are equipped with Defense Switched Network (DSN)
capability, which is the government's network for calling from one military installation to
another; when possible, we encourage students to use these lines. Commercial long distance
calls are authorized for official business only.
Although a medical school program is notorious for long hours, you will have sufficient time to
interact socially with your peers and still perform very well in your coursework. Having a
class with a variety of backgrounds will add to your personal and academic growth. Take all
that you can from this experience. Don't let the academic responsibilities hinder your personal
growth. Finding that proper balance between the academic and the personal will ultimately
make you a better physician.
A variety of student-led organizations exist at USUHS, reflecting a diversity of student
interests. The Office for Student Affairs provides guidance and support to these activities and
maintains a listing of individuals to contact for membership information; your Student
Handbook will contain a detailed description of each organization and members of many of
these organizations will introduce themselves during orientation. Currently, the following
organizations are registered with the Office for Student Affairs.
-Alpha Omega Alpha
-Academic Support Services
- American Medical Association--Medical Student Section
- Association of American Medical Colleges--Organization of
- Christian Medical Association
- Military Medical Student Association
- Student National Medical Association
- Women in Medicine and Science
- Class Governance (MS-I, MS-II, MS-III, and MS-IV classes)
- Aerospace Medicine Student Resident Organization (AMSRO
- Asian Pacific American Medical Student Association
- Catholic Student Association
- Club Med--Internal Medicine Interest Group
- Dermatones (glee club)
- Emergency Medicine Interest Group
- Family Medicine Interest Group
- Latter-day Saints Student Association (LDSSA)
- NNMC Band
- OB/GYN Interest Group
- Operational Medicine Interest Group
- Pediatric Interest Group
- Pool Tournament
- Preventive Medicine Interest Group
- Psychiatry Interest Group
- Radiology Interest Group
- Rugby (men & women)
- Running Club
- Special Operations Medical Interest Group
- Student Spouses' Club
- The Cutting Edge--Surgical Interest Group
- The Gouge (student newspaper)
- Ultimate Frisbee
- Wilderness Medicine Interest Group
- Yearbook (CADUSUHS)
- Youth Science Enrichment Program
USUHS, while operating as the medical school for the Department of Defense, is a unique
institution and you will be afforded some unique opportunities while here. Within this "joint
military" environment, you will quickly learn how to balance the traditional requirements of
medical school with the requirements of officership. You will also enjoy an interesting
combination of military and civilian faculty and staff. This chapter provides an overview of
service life at USUHS; the Office of the Commandant will assist you as you become more
familiar with this environment once you arrive.
All new officers attend an orientation course for their respective services. While these courses
vary in length and specific content, they are all designed to introduce you to policies and life
within your own service. The courses include topics such as proper wear of the uniform;
service history; general officership issues, customs, and courtesies; and a physical fitness
program. Additionally, all of the usual personnel activities associated with starting a new job
are handled during this time. The courses and their locations are listed below; you will hear
more about your specific orientation program at a later date.
Officer Basic Course (Army), Ft Sam Houston (San Antonio) TX
For more information refer to: www.cs.amedd.army.mil/
Officer Indoctrination School (Navy), Naval Training Center (Newport) RI
For more information refer to: https://www.otcn.netc.navy.mil/
Commissioned Officer Training Course (Air Force), Maxwell AFB
For more information refer to: www.au.af.mil/
A weeklong course entitled Medical Officer Survival Training (MOST) is conducted at USUHS
for all non-prior service active duty officer students who cannot attend their service-specific
orientations until a later date.
Be financially prepared for several major initial expenses during your orientation program.
Some of the expenses (i.e., lodging, a set amount for food, and an initial uniform allowance)
will be reimbursed at a later date. Unfortunately, the reimbursement will probably not cover
the amount you spend (uniforms, for example, will cost approximately $800-$900); so a
conservative estimate of required funds is approximately $2000. If you have been issued a DD
Form 214 please bring it with you to avoid pay problems. Pay problems can easily be averted if
you arrive at both the orientation courses and USUHS with this document in hand.
You will receive your military identification (ID) card at the site of your initial military training.
This card provides access to military facilities including exchanges, commissaries, and
medical/dental treatment facilities. Your spouse and children over the age of 10 may also
obtain ID cards at any military installation once you have obtained yours; your spouse will
need a marriage certificate and children will need their birth certificate for official verification.
You will also be issued a University ID as part of your initial inprocessing at the University.
You should always carry your military ID with you and your University ID with you when on
University grounds, particularly after duty hours or when you are not in uniform.
LIFE IN UNIFORM AT USUHS
The military chain of command, though somewhat different, is very similar to the chain of
command you will find in a military medical treatment facility. It originates with the Brigade
Commander, who reports to the President of the University. Working directly for the Brigade
Commander is the Commandant and, in turn, the service-specific Commanders. It is through
this chain you will receive guidance regarding your military responsibilities and development
Monthly Commandant's Calls and officer professional development sessions are required
military events of importance to you as junior officers and medical students. The Commandant
is charged with overseeing your development as your service's junior officers and leaders.
Topics vary in nature, but generally expand on generic officership issues first raised in service-
specific indoctrinations. The Commandant designs the presentations to reflect current thinking
in each of the services.
First and second-year medical students have the opportunity to plan several formal military
functions each year. These serve as an excellent way to learn the history and traditions of each
of the services while planning enjoyable evenings for members of the University community.
All planning and decision making is done by students in concert with the service-specific
Commanders. Frequent informal social functions, though no less important, are entirely
Officers at USUHS comply with all applicable policies of their respective services. These
include uniform and personal appearance standards. The service-specific Commanders will
perform uniform inspections during formations several times each year for students of all
services. Officers also participate in the University's physical training programs and
evaluations, under regulations of their parent services. While a student at USUHS and a
member of the military, you will also be subjected to random, unannounced drug screenings
each year. USUHS policies and mechanisms mirror what occurs in other military
USUHS has its own Military Personnel Office (MILPO) under the Brigade Commander. This
office is staffed by professionals of each service to assist you on matters pertaining to your
USUHS assignment, pay issues, and other administrative support. Discuss your problems or
ask your questions in these areas with the MILPO staff before seeking assistance from outside
the University, since the office serves as a direct link to related offices at major parent-service
installations in the Washington, DC, area.
Because of the rigors of the academic schedule, University policy prohibits off-duty
employment for medical officer candidates except in highly unusual circumstances.
During your service orientation, you will hear of the benefits which members of the military
services receive. These include use of exchanges and commissaries (also discussed briefly in
Chapter 7), excellent insurance coverage, and a non-contributory retirement system. Several
benefits in which you will be immediately interested are your pay, leave, and health/dental
benefits, so we briefly highlight these areas below.
PAY AND EARNINGS
Military Officers have the choice of being paid either monthly or on the first and fifteenth of the
month. Military Officers can start allotments (e.g., for savings, loans, insurance, or charitable)
anytime for any amount by completing the necessary forms at MILPO.
Each month you will receive a computerized leave and earnings statement (LES) which breaks
down your pay into its various components, shows your deductions and allotments, and tells
you how much leave you have earned and used. Although the format and content of LESs
vary somewhat from service to service, all will show at least the following four breakdowns.
Basic pay. Basic pay is the only portion of your salary that is taxable. Generally, USUHS
students receive a base pay at the O-1 paygrade with less than two years service time. There
are two exceptions:
a) Students with prior military service will receive a base pay at the O-1 paygrade
according to years of creditable service, up to three years.
Officer w/less than 2 yrs $2469.30
Prior service officer w/2 yrs $2569.80
Prior service officer w/3 yrs $3106.50
b) Students entering USUHS with prior enlisted service totaling four years or less
will receive a base pay at the O-1 pay grade according to years of creditable
service. Those who have at least one day over four years creditable service
time will be paid at the O-1E paygrade at the appropriate year level.
Prior service enlisted w/less than 2 yrs $2,469.30
Prior service enlisted w/2 but less than 3 yrs $2,569.80
Prior service enlisted w/3 but less than 4 yrs $3,106.50
Prior service enlisted w/4 but less than 6 yrs $3,106.50
Prior service enlisted w/6 but less than 8 yrs $4,602.00
Check with MILPO to determine how creditable service in either of these cases is computed.
While at USUHS, your base pay will not change except for any raises authorized by Congress.
Essentially, TIME STANDS STILL DURING YOUR TENURE AT USUHS, so the majority will
enter the military work force upon graduation at the O-3 paygrade with under two years of
service. Those with prior service time essentially pick up where they left off upon entering
USUHS. Graduates who serve 20 years active duty will be credited with the 4 years spent in
medical school for a total of 24 years credited when determining retirement pay.
Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH). This non-taxable housing allowance is determined by
your rank, whether or not you have dependents, and the area of the country you are stationed.
Example rates are detailed in Chapter 1 under HOUSING COSTS AND ALLOWANCES. If
you live in military housing, you will not receive this allowance because the government
essentially pays for those quarters.
Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS). BAS is generally regarded as "grocery money" and is a
fixed rate for all officers regardless of rank. BAS is not taxable and as of January 2007is $192.74.
If the gross pay figures in your monthly leave and earnings statement do not match those
depicted in the above paragraphs, go to MILPO as soon as possible. Your net pay may vary
somewhat from your classmates' depending on factors such as years of prior service,
allotments, taxes withheld, dependents, etc. If you feel you are getting more money than you
are entitled to, do not ignore it. Notify MILPO of your concern and put the excess amount in a
savings account until the matter is resolved. Remember: if the government is overpaying you,
it will eventually discover the error and recover the excess payment from the paycheck(s)
following the discovery of the error without necessarily informing you.
If you have a pay problem or if you have any questions regarding your LES, contact MILPO
immediately. Bring with you all relevant documentation.
MEDICAL AND DENTAL CARE
You and your family are eligible for health care under the DOD health care program,
TRICARE. TRICARE is designed to meet the department’s medical mission and includes
provisions for supplementing military treatment facilities with resources and health care
professionals from civilian medical organizations. For more information about TRICARE,
contact the TRICARE office at the medical treatment facility nearest you, or any of the
following web sites:
National Naval Medical Center: www.bethesda.med.navy.mil
Tricare #Region 1: 1-877-TRICARE (Health Net Federal Services)
Health care services are discussed briefly in Chapter 7 under HEALTH SERVICES and will be
discussed more fully during academic orientation at USUHS.
Dental insurance, through United Concordia, is available to families of active duty service
members. There is a nominal monthly charge for the dental insurance.
LEAVE AND PASSES
Like all members of the services, you accrue leave at the rate of 30 days per year; the academic
calendar delineates when you may take that leave. There are other times when you are
permitted to be "on pass" out of the local area, provided you return in time for the resumption
of classes. Your company commander will provide details of these when they occur.
Enforcement of traffic regulations with regard to parking, operation and registration of motor
vehicles within the confines of the USUHS complex is the responsibility of the USUHS and/or
NNMC Security offices.
All USUHS personnel operating a vehicle in the USUHS complex must possess a valid
operator's license. All vehicles are required to display appropriate state inspection and
registration requirements, as well as a valid DOD decal or temporary parking pass (available at
USUHS Security). Personnel are required to produce proof of operator's license and
registration (or ownership) upon request of security officials. All personnel assigned to
USUHS must register vehicles with Security.
PARKING AND VEHICLE OPERATION:
All parking is on a first-come, first-served basis. Reserved parking spaces for physically
disabled, special awards, carpools, and government vehicles have been designated. Vehicles
parked in spaces designated for the physically disabled must display either clearly marked tags
or have a pass displayed in the front window of the vehicle (passes available in the Security
Office). All motorcycles will park in designated spaces in the upper parking level near the
Building "B" elevators. Vehicles without proper ID will be ticketed after 24 hours and
considered abandoned after 72 hours. The maximum speed on roadways within the NNMC
complex is 20 mph; within the garages is 5 mph. Any and all accidents involving motor
vehicles within the USUHS complex must be reported immediately to Security.
All vehicles parked overnight must have authorization and an overnight parking permit issued
by the USU Security Office, Room UP001. The only allowance for parking overnight is as
follows: weekends, holidays, Thanksgiving break, Christmas break, Spring break, and family
emergencies. Although vehicles are permitted overnight parking during these periods,
authorization and overnight parking permits are required.
Overnight parking is not permitted during rotation assignments or during periods of official
travel. The only exception is for special two-part training at Ft Indiantown Gap, PA.
(KERKESHNER) and (BUSHMASTER). The Department of Military and Emergency Medicine
will provide special overnight parking permits for these training exercises.
Projected Services Basic Training: (Subject to change)
Army OBC - 10 June – 21 July 2007
Navy OIS - 25 June – 27 July 2007
Air Force COT - 2 July – 3 August 2007
MOST- 23 July – 3 August 2007
13 - 18 Aug 07 Military Inprocessing Week
20 - 24 Aug 07 University Orientation Week
27 August 07 Instruction Begins
22 - 25 Nov 07 Thanksgiving Recess
21 Dec 07 - 6 Jan 08 Winter Recess
22 - 30 Mar 08 Spring Recess
16 June 08 Academic Year End
23 – 27 June 08 Train-Up
28 Jun – 13 July 08 Leave
14 July - 25 July 08 FTX – Kerkesner /Bushmaster
28 July – 20Aug 08 Summer Experience
We cannot come close to telling you all there is to know about medical school in a few brief
paragraphs; it is truly an experience you have to live to appreciate. We can, however, provide
you with an informal overview of the medical school curriculum you will enter. You will find
further information on the academic program in the Student Handbook, and staff and faculty
members will explain all phases at the appropriate time. For now, we provide a snapshot of
the medical education and training you will experience at USUHS.
The first year of medical school is highly structured and the curriculum focuses on the basic
sciences. Courses include Anatomy (Micro, Gross, and Neuro), Biochemistry, Epidemiology
and Biometrics, Human Context in Healthcare, Introduction to Clinical Medicine-I, Medical
History, Medical Psychology, Military Studies, Parasitology and Medical Zoology, and
Physiology. Courses vary greatly in length, some lasting only several weeks to others lasting
most of the academic year. At the end of the first year, the class participates in a two-part
Military Medical Field Studies. The first part is FTX Kerkesner, a field exercise at Ft
Indiantown Gap, in nearby Pennsylvania. The exercise is followed by an individual Summer
Experience of your choice at an installation of your parent service. Several weeks of leave are
scheduled before the exercises begin.
The second year of medical school begins with an abbreviated orientation following your leave.
During the second year, you will continue to learn about the basic sciences, but there is a more
clinical approach. Second year courses include Introduction to Clinical Reasoning, Ethical-
Legal-Social Aspects of Medical Care, Human Behavior, Introduction to Clinical Medicine-II
and III, Microbiology, Military Studies, Pathology, Pharmacology, Preventive Medicine, and
Radiographic Interpretation; most of these have substantial clinical correlations. Once these
courses conclude, you will have approximately 3 to 5 weeks of independent study time prior to
taking Step 1 of the licensing exam (see LICENSING on the following page) in June. Students
typically take leave after completing Step 1.
Your third year is spent almost entirely in hospital settings and consists of a series of
clerkships, funded by the University, in the following areas: Internal Medicine (12 weeks),
Surgery (12 weeks), Obstetrics and Gynecology (6 weeks), Pediatrics (6 weeks), Psychiatry (6
weeks), Family Medicine (6 weeks). Third year students are given grades and written
evaluations for each rotation, based in part on written/oral examinations and preceptors'
subjective evaluations. Half way through the third year, approximately mid-December,
students come together as a class for the third year “Intersession” week.
To determine when and where these rotations will occur, students use a computer "lottery" to
make the selections as fair as possible; the system will be explained in detail during January of
your second year. Third-year rotations are finalized by spring. Selections of several fourth year
electives are also by lottery during this time.
During the third year, you will consult individually with school staff to finalize your fourth
year program; it is also during this time that you will be interviewing with hospital programs
for your internship year following graduation. The fourth year consists of sub-internships in
medicine and surgery (4 weeks) and several elective clerkships, including neurology (4 weeks),
military contingency medicine (4 weeks), military emergency medicine (4 weeks), and various
other electives. Military Contingency Medicine occurs in the first four weeks of the senior year
and includes Bushmaster, a one-week field exercise at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania. In
the fourth year students have two “Intersession” periods, one week in late June and two weeks
in early December.
As the four years of medical school come to an end, students are given time for house hunting
in late April, prior to their relocation after graduation. The entire class comes together again in
early May for a "Transition to Residency" week and a week to prepare for graduation and
Throughout your third year you will also be working with staff and faculty who will assist you
in the process of securing internships and residencies. For the selection of internships
following graduation, students request the hospital programs they prefer; those programs
provide their input to the service-specific boards which meet during late Fall of the fourth year
to make the selections. The Associate Dean for Student Affairs and the Assistant Dean for
Clinical Science write the official letter from the school to support your preference. Known as
"Dean's letters", these will take into account your entire academic record. The selections are
announced following their release by the respective Surgeon's General Office.
State licensing is a requirement to practice medicine in the military. To be licensed, physicians
must pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE), a series of four
standardized exams. You will take Step 1 (which covers most of the material covered during
the first two years) at the end of your second year and Step 2 CK and Step 2 CS (which cover
knowledge and skills learned during the clinical clerkships) during your fourth year. After
receiving the M.D. degree and upon completion of at least six months of internship, you will
take Step 3. Once you have passed all three parts of the exam, you will receive certificates from
the National Board of Medical Examiners so that you may pursue registration in the state of
USUHS utilizes four major teaching hospitals:
Malcolm Grow USAF Medical Center (USAFMC), Andrews AFB MD
National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda MD
Walter Reed Army Medical Center (AMC), Washington DC
Wilford Hall USAFMC, San Antonio TX
USUHS also has many affiliations throughout the U.S., thus allowing a wide variety of clinical
experiences. These hospitals offer programs in the rotating clerkship of the third and fourth
years, as well as internships following graduation. The major affiliates of the program are:
Brooke AMC, San Antonio TX
DeWitt Army Community Hospital (ACH), Ft Belvoir VA
Madigan AMC, Tacoma WA
Darnall Army Community Hospital (ACH), Ft Hood TX
Eisenhower AMC, Ft Gordon GA
Martin ACH, Ft Benning GA
Tripler AMC, Honolulu HI
William Beaumont AMC, El Paso TX
Womack AMC, Ft Bragg NC
Bergquist Strategic Hospital, Offutt AFB NE
David Grant USAFMC, Travis AFB CA
Scott USAFMC, Scott AFB IL
Keesler USAFMC, Keesler AFB MS
USAF School of Aerospace Medicine, San Antonio TX
Wright-Patterson USAFMC, Dayton OH
646 Medical Group, Eglin AFB FL
Naval Aerospace Medical Institute, Pensacola FL
Naval Hospital, Portsmouth VA
Naval Hospital, Jacksonville FL
Naval Hospital, Pensacola FL
Naval Hospital, San Diego CA
Naval Hospital, Camp Pendleton CA
Naval Hospital, Bremerton WA
Naval Hospital, Camp Lejeune NC
Medical school is challenging, but not impossible, and significant academic support is built into
the system from the beginning of the program. The Office for Student Affairs works closely
with the various academic departments to support your needs during this important phase of
your professional development. Further, Student Affairs will work closely with you on an
individual basis, offering counseling and practical advice to prepare you to better meet the
demands of the curriculum. Finally, students themselves offer excellent support for their
fellow students through small group and individual tutoring, note exchanges, and study skills
tips. While the school seeks to be aware of your needs as quickly as possible, you should be
comfortable in asking for help as soon as you perceive a need.
Spouses and Families
Welcome to all spouses, fiancées, and significant others of the Class of 2011! Whether you are a seasoned
veteran of military life or are brand new to the uniformed services, you may be wondering what USU has
in store for you, the other half of the medical student. The next four years will be filled with many
changes and adjustments. The Student Spouses Club (SSC) is here to provide support, friendship, and
advice as you make the transitions from year to year.
The SSC is open to both male and female spouses, fiancées, significant others and family members of all
USU students. Its membership currently consists of men and women who work both inside and outside
the home, each bringing with them unique experiences and backgrounds that enrich the character of the
The Student Spouses Club (SSC) is an organization for the spouses and significant others of the students
at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. The goal of the SSC is to provide support,
friendship, and community for student families through a variety of social and service activities throughout
the year. SSC is a private, non-profit organization.
The SSC was founded in 1980 with a handful of members who felt the need to provide support for one
another. Organization was minimal, and the SSC’s only responsibilities were a “Get Acquainted Brunch”
and the annual Holiday Party. Since then, the SSC has grown considerably. It has a board of officers and
chairs, monthly meetings, planned activities, and various annual events. The Club has many dedicated
members and has become an integral part of USU.i
The SSC sponsors a variety of activities throughout the year, including multiple social events and a
monthly meeting, all of which are open to members and prospective members. In addition to these club-
wide events, there are six committees to which members may belong: Adult Social Committee, Parent-Tot
Group, Sunshine Committee, Fundraising Committee, Info Session Committee, and SSC Parties
There are also a number of annual events that the SSC sponsors. During the students’ orientation week,
the SSC hosts a special orientation exclusively for spouses (see the following page for details on the
tentative schedule) and a welcome picnic a few weeks later. The SSC also hosts annual events such as a
Halloween party, a Winter holiday party, a Spring party and egg hunt, and numerous fundraising events.
Website and Newsletter
The SSC keeps an updated website at www.usuhs.mil/ssc and publishes a quarterly newsletter to inform
all spouses about club activities, local events, and other tidbits of useful information. The newsletters are
sent to both SSC members and non-members. If you have a change in address or are not receiving the
SSC newsletter, please contact the SSC at firstname.lastname@example.org. The SSC also sends bi-
monthly emails to it members to update them with the latest club news and announcements.
Welcome to DC and USU
The SSC has members throughout the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. These members are
comprised to geographical areas for support and fellowship to provide information and support to
newcomers in their area as well as beyond. If you are interested in requesting a sponsor for your specific
area, please email email@example.com.
As the start of the academic year approaches, you will receive additional information regarding dates and
times of special events being planned for the Class of 2011. We encourage you to attend the SSC
Spouses Orientation in August. It will familiarize you with the campus, help prepare you for what to
expect in the upcoming years, give you information about the general area, provide an opportunity to meet
other spouses, and help you learn more about what the SSC has to offer. On the next page is a tentative
SSC Orientation Schedule.
New Member Info
Dues for membership in the SSC are currently $25.00 per school year. Individuals interested in joining the
SSC can make checks payable to “Student Spouses Club” and mail them to: Student Spouses Club, c/o
Dana Davila, 13012 Estelle Road, Silver Spring, MD, 20906. Feel free to contact the SSC at
firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information regarding the SSC, its activities, or any
questions as you plan your move.
Please join in the SSC activities. The Student Spouses Club looks forward to including you in the USU
Student Spouses Club
(Tentative Schedule of dates, locations and times)
SSC Informational Table
Wednesday, August 23, 2007 10 am to 11:30 am
Building C-Auditorium Lobby – covered breezeway
Come by and visit the SSC informational table where SSC representatives are available to
answer general questions regarding the club as well as sign you up for the SSC Spouses
SSC Spouses Orientation
Thursday, August 24, 2007 8 am to 11:30 am
The SSC Spouses Orientation is an opportunity for spouses to learn about USU, the
military, and the community, as well as meeting other spouses. Welcome information
packets are provided for attendees. A tour of USU and a continental breakfast will be
available. The SSC Spouses Orientation strives to help spouses understand what to
expect at USU and to provide opportunities for spouses to get involved with the SSC.
Many professionals from USU and the surrounding areas will speak on topics relating to
family and your time at USU. A child area will be provided in the back of the meeting
room for those with children.
Spouses Welcome Picnic
Saturday, September 8, 2007 1130-1500
Pavilions behind USU
Celebrate the new school year with the Student Spouses Club! We are welcoming back
current members and meeting the incoming spouses. Enjoy good food and good company!
The above schedule is tentative, please check the SSC website at www.usuhs.mil/ssc
or contact the SSC at email@example.com for any updates to this schedule.
Please Note: There are several sessions of interest to spouses
during the Medical Student Orientation. Please refer to the
students’ orientation schedule that is distributed when the
students arrive at USU in August.
PERSONAL LIFESTYLE INFORMATION
This chapter provides an A to Z listing of general information which students and families new
to USUHS might find helpful as they settle into the area.
You may register your vehicle(s) at USUHS when you matriculate. With that registration, you
acquire a military decal that allows you to park at USUHS as well as to drive on any other
You may also have to register your vehicle in the jurisdiction in which you live, be it Maryland,
Virginia, or Washington, DC. A representative from the USUHS Office of the General Counsel
will meet with you during orientation and will address this issue.
A number of banking facilities exist in the area near USUHS and in the local communities.
Their services, fees, and interest rates vary.
The banking facility closest to the USUHS campus is Navy Federal Credit Union (NFCU). Most
Navy personnel are already familiar with this institution, since it has branches on or near most
Navy bases around the world. NFCU, the world's largest credit union, is a member-owned
institution open to USUHS students and their families. In addition to its branch office located in
Building 2 of the Naval Hospital and its automatic teller machine at the Navy Exchange, NFCU
offers a number of branch offices and automatic teller machines in various communities.
Although your medical school textbooks are issued to you, you may want to supplement your
personal library with review books or other materials. Students often use the on-campus
Alumni Bookstore, but several other bookstores in the area are noteworthy: NIH Foundation
Bookstore (located at NIH across Wisconsin Avenue from NNMC), Reiter's Scientific and
Professional Books (2021 K St., NW, Washington, DC; use Farragut North METRO stop),
George Washington University Bookstore (use Foggy Bottom METRO stop), and Georgetown
University Medical Bookstore (3900 Reservoir Rd, NW, Washington, DC).
You will be able to present checks for cash at exchanges and at officers' clubs (if you are a
member of an officers' club anywhere). This applies to either local or out-of-area checks if you
present your government identification card. You will also be allowed to pay for items or
services with a personal check at military exchanges, commissaries, and service stations.
Retailers in the civilian community prefer local checks; some will accept out-of-area checks if
you explain that you are in the military and are new to the area, but don't count on it.
Computers play a major role in the lives of students at USUHS. During orientation, staff
members will brief you on the use of the entire system and its features, as well as issue you an
account number which gives you access to the system. Two of the most important features of
the system are the electronic mail which allows you to communicate with other students,
faculty members, and staff members, and electronic bulletin boards which contain information
which members of the University community need to know. PLEASE CHECK YOUR
COMPUTER MAIL AT LEAST SEVERAL TIMES A WEEK TO INSURE YOU RECEIVE THE
IMPORTANT INFORMATION YOU NEED IN A TIMELY WAY. A large number of computer
terminals available for student use are located in the Learning Resource Center (LRC).
The Washington, DC, area boasts a great number of fine restaurants. The Office for Student
Affairs can provide you with information--including prices, atmosphere, and menus--on many
As for informal dining, USUHS operates a cafeteria on the first floor of Building B. The
cafeteria is open from 6:30 AM to 10:00 AM for breakfast and from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM for
lunch, Monday through Friday, with a salad bar, sandwich bar, and grill. Food is reasonably
priced and students and family members are welcomed.
Other informal dining on the grounds of NNMC include a cafeteria in Building 2 of the Naval
Hospital, a Baskin-Robbins and Subway sandwich shop in the same building, and a McDonalds
restaurant in the Navy Exchange complex.
The military services operate retail stores, known as exchanges, at military installations around
the world. The sizes of these stores vary, depending on the size of the installation and the
uniformed population they serve, but most will carry a wide selection of merchandise
including clothing, household goods, and small appliances, and at generally lower prices than
you can purchase the items off a military installation. The exchanges accept several major
credit cards and offer a useful cashier service, which allows you to write checks for cash. Many
exchange complexes will also offer services such as a florists, snack bars, automotive services,
and laundry and dry cleaners. While the various services refer to their exchanges differently
(an Army exchange is called a PX for Post Exchange, a Navy Exchange is NX, an Air Force
exchange is BX for Base Exchange, and a Marine Corps Exchange is MCX), students and their
families may use any of these; be sure to bring your ID card.
There is also a military clothing and sales store located on most installations. This store carries
military uniforms and accessories to accommodate the branch of service which it represents.
Like the exchanges, it to accepts several major credit cards and checks.
The exchange closest to USUHS is located on the grounds of NNMC, a short walk from the
campus; this medium-sized NX complex offers the usual retail services, plus a service station
and McDonalds restaurant. A large PX is located at the Forest Glen Annex of Walter Reed
Army Medical Center (WRAMC), a five-minute drive from USUHS. Most of the area's
exchanges are open seven days a week, but it's always smart to check their hours before you
go; their locations and phone numbers are listed below.
Andrews AFB, Camp Springs MD (301) 568-1500
Bolling AFB, Washington DC (202) 562-3000
Fort Belvoir, Alexandria VA (703) 806-5800
Fort Meade, Odenton MD (410) 674-7170
Fort Myer, Arlington VA (703) 522-4575
Henderson Hall, Arlington VA (703) 979-8420
Naval Station, Annapolis MD (410) 757-0005
NNMC, Bethesda MD (301) 295-6362
Washington Navy Yard, Washington DC (202) 889-7534
WRAMC--Forest Glen, Silver Spring MD (301) 565-0900
A fitness room, equipped with exercise bikes, stepping machines, treadmills, rowing machines,
and assorted weights, is located in room G072. Showers and lockers are nearby. The facility is
open 24 hours a day to students, staff, and faculty.
On the grounds of NNMC (and only a short block from USUHS) there is a pool, gym, and
fitness center, all open daily. The gym and its basketball court are also free. The fitness center
is free to active-duty members, retirees, and dependents; civilians assigned to the base must
Other military installations in the area also maintain a variety of excellent recreational facilities,
which include golf courses, tennis courts, hobby and craft shops, bowling alleys, gyms and
fitness centers, theaters, and even marinas. Some offer equipment and camper rentals on a
"first-come, first-served" basis. The Office for Student Affairs can assist you with locating
specific facilities in which you might be interested.
Each of the military services offer special services designed to help families in need. The Navy
and Air Force personnel call these offices Family Services, while to Army folks they are known
as Army Community Services. These services (which often include relocation assistance,
family and financial counseling, employment assistance) are available free to students and
family members, regardless of branch of service. Contact the Office for Student Affairs for
further information on these agencies and their programs.
USUHS students as a group are better off financially than students at any medical school in the
country. In addition to the government paying for all of their education (including tuition,
fees, and books), each student is paid a salary and provided several non-taxable allowances
(housing, variable housing, and subsistence). Additionally there are the non-tangible benefits
of health care, exchange and commissary privileges, retirement benefits, and possibly tax
advantages (depending on the state of residency). (All of these benefits are discussed in
Chapter 4.) Thus, there is little need for USUHS to operate a full-time financial aid office, as you
would find at other medical schools.
This is not to say that students NEVER have financial problems. Sometimes due to
circumstances in or beyond our control, students and their families find themselves in need of
financial assistance. The Office for Student Affairs is available to help students and families in
these situations, through either counseling or referral to one of the many specialized programs
at the various military installations and in the local communities.
Several major chain grocery stores--including Safeway, Giant, and Shoppers Food Warehouse--
as well as small and large independent groceries have stores in the local communities.
Roadside produce markets are open seasonally in many suburban areas.
Additionally, most military bases operate grocery stores. These stores, known as commissaries,
are operated jointly by the services and are open to all USUHS students and their families. As
with exchanges, you can realize considerable savings by shopping at the commissaries, which
carry a full range of grocery needs. Commissaries accept cash or checks; again, be sure to bring
your ID card to get in.
The commissary closest to USUHS is located at the Forest Glen Annex of WRAMC. Two very
large and relatively new commissaries are located at Fort Meade and Andrews AFB. Most
commissaries close at least one day a week (usually Sunday and/or Monday), so call before
you go. The area's commissaries and their phones numbers are listed below.
Andrews AFB, Camp Springs MD (240) 857-7105
Bolling AFB, Washington DC (202) 767-4044
Fort Belvoir, Alexandria VA (703) 806-6371
Fort Meade, Odenton MD (301) 677-7463
Fort Myer, Arlington VA (703) 696-3685
Marine Corps Base, Quantico VA (703) 784-2476
WRAMC--Forest Glen, Silver Spring MD (301) 295-7358
There is a barber shop located in the Navy Exchange complex near USUHS, open Monday
through Saturday. The phone number is 295-6387 and haircuts are $8.00. There is another
barber shop (295-6390) located on the 1st floor of Building 2 of the Navy Hospital, haircuts are
also $8.00. In addition to these on-base facilities, there are a number of hair care establishments
in the local communities and shopping malls.
Students and their families receive free use of the services of the University Family Health
Center at USUHS, located in Room A1034. Members of the clinic staff will brief you during
orientation, and you and your family will have an opportunity to visit the clinic at that time.
The Student Handbook will also cover clinic policies and procedures in great detail. The
following brief information is provided in the event you require medical services before
The University Family Health Center is open Monday through Friday from 7:15 AM to 4:00
PM, but it is closed for appointments between 12:00 and 1:00 daily and 12:00 through 4:00 pm
on Tuesdays. The staff consists of eight family physicians, a psychiatrist, a psychologist, a
social worker, a registered nurse, one medical office assistant, one civilian nursing assistant and
three AD medical technicians. The clinic provides comprehensive and continuing health care
for patients of all ages. This includes routine prenatal care, military and general physicals,
well-baby check-ups, routine immunizations, illnesses and minor injuries, and mental health
counseling. The clinic stocks some commonly used medications, but you will receive most
medications from the main pharmacy at NNMC. The clinic staff also coordinates all referrals to
other specialists. The clinic's telephone number is (301) 295-3630; a physician is always on call
after duty hours and may be contacted through the USUHS Security Office at (301) 295-
3038/3039 or by calling the after hours answering service at 1-800-747-3661 and request to
speak to the physician that is on call for USUHS.
To be seen at the clinic, please call ahead and schedule an appointment; there are no walk-
in/sick call appointments. You will be given the next available appointment slot. Make a
separate appointment for each family member to be seen. Arrive at least 15 minutes before
your appointment to allow time for you to be screened by one of the clinic staff. Bring only
those children that are scheduled to be seen by the doctor. Always bring your government
In an emergency during non-duty hours, go directly to the emergency room at any military
medical facility. The major facilities and their phone numbers are listed below. In a life-
threatening situation, go to the nearest emergency room, civilian or military. Any time you
obtain emergency care at any other facility, military or civilian, return any paperwork you
receive regarding treatment and medications to the university health center as soon as possible
so that it may be incorporated into your official medical record.
Kimbrough Army Community Hospital
Ft. Meade MD (301) 677-8392 (Information)
Malcolm Grow USAF Medical Center
Andrews AFB MD (240) 857-5911 (Information)
National Naval Medical Center
Bethesda MD (301) 295-4611 (Information)
Walter Reed Army Medical Center
Washington DC (202) 782-3501 (Information)
TRICARE (888) 999-5195 (Appointment line)
On some major roads in the Washington area you will see signs with the letters "HOV" and a
large diamond symbol. Those letters (meaning "High Occupancy Vehicle") and the symbol
indicate those lanes are restricted to vehicles with a minimum number of people during certain
times of the day. What "minimum number" and "certain times" mean vary with the area and
are subject to change. Just be aware that possible restrictions apply; police closely monitor these
The issue of integrity--for a student, a uniformed officer, and a future physician--is a most
important topic which you will be dealing with regularly in the coming years. Integrity will be
the subject of many of your Commandant's Calls, an issue in your formal medical training, and
a part of your informal discussions with other students and staff. A chapter in the Student
Handbook you will receive upon matriculation contains a detailed discussion of integrity, why
it is worth your attention, and USUHS' methods of incorporating integrity into your academic
and professional lives.
The Washington, DC, area is serviced by three large, full-service international airports.
Reagan National Airport, the oldest and smallest of the three, is located just across the Potomac
River from downtown Washington. National is accessible by car (long- and short-term parking
is available), shuttle (approximately $16.00 from the Bethesda area), and Metrorail (the area's
subway and above-ground rail system; the yellow line takes you there for roughly $2.50 - $3.90
depending on the time of day and where you board).
Dulles International Airport is located northwest of Washington. The airport is on the Dulles
Airport Road, 10 miles west of Interstate 495 (known as the Capital Beltway which encircles
Washington). Dulles is accessible by car (long- and short-term parking is available), and
shuttle (approximately $17.00 from the Bethesda area). A public bus service has recently been
initiated (Metro Bus 5A) and it runs from the Airport to the Metro Station at Rosslyn and
at L’Enfant Plaza. For more information go to: www.metroopensdoors.com
Baltimore-Washington International Airport is located northeast of Washington off of
Interstate 95. BWI is accessible by car (long-and short-term parking is available), airport bus
service (approximately $20.00 from the Bethesda area) and shuttle (approximately $23.00 from
the Bethesda area). There is also a Metro Bus Service which runs from BWI Airport (B30 Bus -
$3.00) to Greenbelt Metro Station. For information on this service please refer to
Taxis are also available at the airports. For information on the shuttle services contact:
Since a large percentage of students have children when they enter USUHS or have children
by the time they graduate, a section discussing the important topics of daycare and schools is a
Daycare. Daycare services are available in the local communities, but military bases in the
area also offer such services. Students living on or near Andrews AFB will find both child
daycare (301-981-3035) for children 6 months to 10 years of age and family daycare (301-981-
2025) for in-home certified care on the base. A child development center at the National Naval
Medical Center (301-295-0167) provides services for children aged 6 weeks to five years old.
The Child Development Services office (202-782-5025) at WRAMC's Forest Glen Annex offers a
resource and referral service, a school age latch key program during the summers, parent co-
ops, and information on private, short-term, and family child care; this is in addition to their
own Child Development Center (301-295-7570) for infants through pre-school, and for school
age and middle school (301-295-7208/7205). Information on childcare at Ft. Meade is available
by calling the Child Development Service there (301-677-1156). In most of the cases of
childcare at military installations, the charge is dependent upon the sponsor's rank (which for
students will be ensign or second lieutenant).
Schools. Public schools are organized in districts by county in Maryland and Virginia; the city
of Washington, DC, has its own district as well. Information on how to register children is
available from any school or by calling the district office for the county in which you reside.
Montgomery County (in which USUHS is located and in which most students reside) boasts a
large number of private schools emphasizing various educational philosophies; most of these
are quite expensive and very selective. As for parochial schools, there are a number of
Catholic and Jewish schools, a few mainline Protestant-denomination schools, and several
evangelical Christian schools in the area.
The Office of the General Counsel (OGC) at USUHS offers free legal services for students and
their families. Additionally, students and their families can receive assistance at the legal
services office at any of the military installations in the area; their telephone number is 301-295-
The types of legal assistance available to you include information on the following: claims for
reimbursement of losses or damages during your move, tenant/landlord relations, wills and
powers of attorney, residency and vehicle registration requirements, voting information,
federal and state tax information, notary service, survivors' benefits, and counseling on civil
and criminal matters. These services will be introduced more fully during orientation.
The Learning Resource Center (LRC) is USUHS' library and a lot more. You will have an
introductory visit to the LRC during matriculation, at which time you will receive your library
LRC personnel should be able to identify other libraries in the areas which will be helpful in
your efforts to do research or simply find a quiet place to study. Counties in Maryland and
Virginia and the city of Washington, DC, maintain numerous branch libraries in their local
communities. Major military installations also maintain libraries on base. There are a number
of specialized medical libraries in the area as well, with that of the National Institutes of Health
nearby particularly noteworthy; Georgetown University, George Washington University, and
Howard University all have both university and medical school libraries, as well.
The mailroom is located on the ground floor of the university (Room G059A). You will be
assigned a mailbox, primarily for intra-university and official mail, during orientation. Since
the mailroom functions only as a mail distribution office and therefore is not part of the
U.S. Postal Service, do NOT use this mailbox to receive mail from outside the university.
As mentioned in the "computer" subsection, you will also be communicating by computer.
The University computer center will issue you an electronic mail (E-Mail) account and
you will receive instruction regarding the use of the system during orientation.
USUHS events are advertised through notices on the many bulletin boards located
throughout the campus and the closed circuit television monitors located around the campus,
covering topics of general interest and specific interest (military information, lost and found,
buying and selling, and class news, to name a few).
To keep you current on world and local news, the LRC has subscriptions to major newspapers
There is a Post Office located on the first floor of Building 2 at NNMC (301-941-2786). There is
also a branch in Bethesda, located at 740 Wisconsin Avenue (800-275-8777), and in nearby
Kensington, located at 10325 Kensington Parkway (800-275-8777). Additionally, the UPS
maintains an office in Gaithersburg at 9401 Gaither Road, and maintains a toll-free number of
What do you do if you have a question on a topic not in the Guide? ASK! There are a number
of offices which seek to help you. Ask in the Office for Student Affairs. Chances are the staff
has heard it before and can readily assist you; if it's a question they've never heard, they will
work to get you an answer. The Office of the Commandant is also a good resource,
particularly if the question pertains to your conduct or development as officers, uniform
issues, or pay. It may be a cliché, but it's true: "the only dumb question is the one you didn't
Many religious faiths are represented in the Washington area, and the local chambers of
commerce and telephone directories are fine sources to locate houses of worship and religious
Additionally, the military branches offer complete religious programs through chaplains.
Chaplains in each military branch are commissioned officers, educated and experienced as
civilian pastors, priests or rabbis before being recommended by their particular denominations
or faith groups to serve in the military. Chaplains view themselves as pastors for the service
families who choose to become a part of any base's chapel community, and through their
chapel programs offer religious training and worship opportunities, counseling, and service to
others. A chaplain is assigned to USUHS and works closely with USUHS students, staff, and
their families, offering opportunities for worship, training, and counseling; his telephone
number is: (301) 295-3193/9658, and website: www.usuhs.mil/chaplain. Both he and the
Office for Student Affairs can provide telephone numbers for chapel programs at other bases
in the area.
There are several large, well-equipped malls located a short distance from the University. The
closest of these, White Flint Mall, is several miles north on Maryland Route 355 (called
Wisconsin Avenue when it passes NNMC but Rockville Pike when it runs past the mall).
White Flint boasts a Bloomingdales, Lord and Taylor, over 120 specialty stores, theaters,
restaurants, and an eatery; many are quite expensive.
Other malls in the local area include Montgomery Mall, west on Democracy Boulevard in
Bethesda (Hechts, Nordstroms, Sears, 160 specialty stores, theaters, several restaurants, and an
eatery); Lake Forest Mall, north on Route 355 (it's called Frederick Road at this point) at
Montgomery Village Avenue in Gaithersburg (J.C. Penney, Sears, Hechts, 160 specialty stores,
theaters, and several restaurants). In nearby Virginia (Exit 11B off the Beltway), Tyson's
Corner Center is the largest in the state (Nordstroms, Bloomingdales, Hechts, Lord and Taylor,
230 specialty stores, restaurants, theaters, and an eatery).
We welcome spouses, fiancées and significant others who may wish to attend the orientation
sessions at the beginning of the year, as this is an excellent opportunity to better understand
and share with your spouse his or her introduction to medical school.
USUHS has an active spouses' club (see their welcome in Chapter 6), which serves to bring
student spouses and significant others together for friendship, support, and service to the
University and the local area. You will meet members of the organization during orientation
week. The club offers a variety of activities throughout the year, including monthly meetings,
crafts groups, mom's and tots gatherings, bake sales, and social evenings.
Spouses of USUHS students will find many opportunities for employment outside the home,
if that is a desire. The Civilian Personnel Office at USUHS encourages spouses to seek
employment at the University. In addition to University opportunities for employment,
government or related employment is often available nearby.
Carlson Travel Network has an office at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and their service
agents will assist you with all of your travel needs. Their phone number is (202) 882-0303 or
toll free at (800) 756-6333 and (800)-383-6732 for after hours.
USO OF METROPOLITAN WASHINGTON
Most people in uniform are familiar with the USO and its active support of the military for
over fifty years. The traditional clubs to offer World War II service personnel coffee, donuts,
and conversation have evolved with the times; the Washington, DC, area chapter of the
organization now includes emergency housing for military families in crisis, job fairs, a food
assistance program, newcomer orientations, airport assistance desks, holiday programs, and
other family support programs at nine locations in the area. It's another great resource to keep
in mind. Their telephone numbers are (703) 696-2628.
USUHS has a large underground parking facility available free of charge. Students should
park there also when conducting business at the Naval Hospital during normal duty hours
(approximately between 7 AM and 5 PM), but may park in the Naval Hospital's garage during
non-duty hours. Federal police monitor parking everywhere on the installation and ticket
vehicles that are illegally parked, are parked for storage, or do not have current state and
military registrations. See pages 19-20 for more parking information.
You may maintain voter registration either here in the local area or at the address where you
maintain legal residency. Again, a representative from the USUHS General Counsel's (295-
3028) office will discuss this issue with you during orientation.
The Spring and Fall are beautiful in Washington and the surrounding area, but Summer and
Winter may not be so friendly. Obviously, such statements are relative, depending on where
you will be coming from and what you like in terms of weather. You decide for yourself; here
are the facts.
Summer is hot and humid, with average high temperatures in the upper 80s+ and lows in the
70s during July and August. Those 90+ degree days with hazy sunshine and sticky air can be
unpleasant. Strong thunderstorms occur occasionally, which relieve the heat but wreak havoc
with rush-hour commutes.
Winter can be cold and wet, with average high temperatures in the 40s and lows in the 20s
during January and February. Because people in the area have a very difficult time driving
when there is the least bit of adverse weather, plan to experience great delays (if not
frustrations) when you commute during winter rains or snows. Most government agencies,
businesses, and schools have emergency plans for coping with the weather. You will be
briefed by the Commandant's Office in the Fall on the USUHS policies. Delays and closings
due to the weather are reported on most major radio and television stations; you can also get
information on USUHS reporting by calling (301) 295-3039 and general weather information
by calling (301) 936-1212.
ZOO AND OTHER THINGS TO DO
Yes, we had to stretch for that one! Washington, as you already know, is full of interesting
sights to see and exciting things to do. It's only after you're here for a while and hear more
about these opportunities and experience them that you truly realize what a great area you are
in. Yes, there are the problems that you no doubt have heard of--crime, congestion, and cost of
living, yet few cities can boast the wealth of attractions that Washington and the surrounding
area can. With a little caution, a little common sense, and a little planning, the four years (or
more) that you're in this area can provide you with numerous opportunities to see and do
things that most tourists would never have and some residents not take advantage of. While
medical school will keep you busy, if you manage your time well, you'll have time to both
survive school AND enjoy the area. You owe it to yourself and your family.
Begin your stay in Washington with a book on the area, which you can purchase at most
bookstores here or wherever you might be coming from. There are even books written for
children with a special emphasis on things they will enjoy. A number of free publications
highlighting things to do are available from the local visitors bureaus in the area. These will
help orient you to the city and surrounding area, and will provide a list of specific attractions,
events, and places to visit once you arrive.
For starters, there's downtown Washington with its dozens of better known attractions (such as
the Capitol, the White House, the Smithsonian Institution museums, and the monuments) and
three times as many lesser known ones; the National Zoo and numerous parks throughout the
city free for enjoyment and recreation; day trips to nearby areas (such as Gettysburg National
Battlefield and Annapolis); overnight or weekend trips (Colonial Williamsburg, Philadelphia,
and the coast); seasonal attractions (the Blue Ridge Parkway of the Shenandoahs when the
leaves change in the Fall, Winchester and apple country during the Fall harvest, the National
Christmas tree lighting in early December, and various festivals in the Spring); the arts and
entertainment year-round (the Kennedy Center and
other theaters, as well as outdoor concerts at various locations--many free, many with student
The list is as endless as you want it to be! The local newspapers provide a weekly supplement
on what is happening locally. Also, check with the Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR)
office located at the NNMC for information on local attractions and discount tickets to many of
While we've covered the As to Zs here, we guarantee there are areas we've missed. At least
this should give you a good start as you begin life at USUHS. Remember that if there are
questions you have along the way; help is only a question away!
WHO'S WHO AND WHAT'S WHERE
This section is quick reference of the people and the offices and telephone numbers most
frequently needed by students. The USUHS telephone directory contains a complete listing of
personnel (staff, faculty, and students) and all University offices and telephone numbers. A
map of the grounds of NNMC is also included.
President, Uniformed Services University: Dr. Charles L. Rice
Acting Senior Vice President: Dr. Dale Smith
Vice President, Finance and Administration: Stephen C. Rice
Vice President, External Affairs: Carol R. Scheman
Vice President, Recruitment and Diversity Affairs: Cynthia I. Macri, CAPT, MC, USN
Brigade Commander: John Maurer, LTC, USA
Chaplain: Father Timothy J. Jannings, LCDR, CHC, USNR
General Counsel: John Baker, Ret, JAG, USA & Bradley S. Beall, J.D.
F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine Administration
Dean, School of Medicine: Larry W. Laughlin, M.D., Ph.D.
Vice Dean, School of Medicine: John E. McManigle, Col, USAF, MC
Associate Dean for Student Affairs: Richard M. MacDonald, M.D.
Office for Student Affairs -
Assistant Dean for Clinical Sciences: Lisa Moores, LTC(P)
Assistant Dean for Academic Support Services: William T. Wittman, Ph.D.
Student Affairs Specialist: Mickie McAuliffe
Secretary: Marilyn Harvell
Program Assistant: Lisa McTigue
Office Automation Assistant: April Broussard
Office of Admissions/Registrar—
Assistant Dean for Recruitment and Admission: Margaret Calloway, M.D.,
FACP, CDR, MC, USN,
Director, Office of Admissions: Joan C. Stearman, M.S.W.
Peter J. Stavish, M.B.A., University Registrar (Interim)
Associate Registrar: Linda A. Porter
Commandant: Ken Tashiro, Col, USAF, MC
Company Commander, USA: Nicholas G. Horton, 1LT, MS, USA
Company Commander, USN: Michael Kemper, LCDR, MC, USN
Squadron Commander, USAF: Sarah-Ann Beal, Maj, USAF, BSC
Executive Assistant: Tracy Martinez, MSgt, USAF
THE PLACES Room Phone
Administrative Services G056 295-3032
Anatomy, Physiology & Genetics B2100 295-3200
Anesthesiology C1092 295-3140
Biochemistry B4058 295-3550
Dermatology C1077 295-9802
Family Medicine A1038 295-3632
Medical History D3013 295-3168
Medical and Clinical Psychology B3056 295-9669
Medicine (NNMC) Bldg. 9, Rm. 1713 295-2010
Microbiology and Immunology B4152 295-3400
Military and Emergency Medicine C1039 295-3720
Neurology A1036 295-9684
Obstetrics/Gynecology (NNMC) Bldg. 1 295-3430
Pathology B3154 295-3104
Pediatrics C1069 295-0723
Pharmacology C2007 295-3227
Preventive Medicine/Biometrics A1044 295-3170
Psychiatry B3068 295-9797
Radiology & Nuclear Medicine C1071 295-3145
Surgery A3017 295-3155
Admissions (ADM) A1041 295-3101
Audio Visual G070 295-3337
Brigade Commander C1023 295-2690
Brigade Judge Advocate C1011 295-9699
Floor, Bldg. B 301-494-6554
CARDIAC ARREST 666
Chaplain C1098 295-3193
Civilian Personnel (CHR) A1022 295-3412
Commandant C1021 295-3120
Company Commanders C1019 295-3722
Dean, School of Medicine A1010 295-3017
Equal Employment Opportunity Office A1015 295-3032
Facilities G049 295-3045
Fitness/Weight Room G072
General Counsel (OGC) A1030 295-3028
Jay P. Sanford Auditorium Bldg. B
Laboratory Animal Medicine (LAM) G169 295-3753
Learning Resource Center (LRC) D1001 295-3350
A 1st Floor Bldg. A
B 1st Floor Bldg. A
C 1st Floor Bldg. A
D 1st Floor Bldg. C
E 1st Floor Bldg. C
Mail Service Center G059 295-3035
Medical Education A1005 295-9439
Military Personnel (MPO) C1016 295-3423
Multidiscipline Laboratories (MDL) A2030 295-3301
Registrar (REG) A1041 295-3197
Security UP001 295-3033
Guards Station B Bldg. 295-3038
Student Affairs (OSA) C1020 295-3185
Student Store B1026 295-3686
Travel Office (Carlson Travel) WRAMC 202-882-0303 or
Travel Office (TDY/TAD travel) A1040 295-9348
University Family Health Center (UFHC) A1034 295-3630
University Information Systems (UIS) G007 295-9800
Weather Recording (School Cancellations) 295-3039