Cardiovascular Disease

Welcome to the Cardiovascular Disease Program

From the Program Director

Dear Applicant,

Few people enjoy change, but often good things come of it.  Last year, the pandemic forced us to do things differently when it came to interviews.  We had a successful virtual interview season last year, and plan for the same success this year!

It is our goal to make this interview season as seamless as possible for you. While we know you cannot come to us, know that we want to learn as much about you as you want to learn about us. A letter, website, or video just doesn’t do justice to helping you understand why you want to choose us, USD Sanford School of Medicine as your cardiovascular disease fellowship program.

Our cardiovascular disease fellowship program, accredited since 2012, is the only fellowship of its kind in the Dakotas and one of only a few in the upper Midwest. The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education has commended our program for demonstrating substantial compliance with no citations, ever. Since inception, we have graduated 14 cardiovascular disease fellows, Over 80% of which chose to go on to additional fellowships (interventional, advanced cardiac imagining) while the other 20% started practice right after fellowship. Currently, all of our graduates are in fellowship programs or practicing interventional cardiology, advanced cardiac imaging or general cardiology. To date, we have a 100% board pass rate and plan to maintain it indefinitely.

It is our mission to provide you a very comprehensive, intense, yet balanced exposure to all aspects of cardiovascular disease. We graduate cardiologists capable of succeeding in any type of setting (academic, private practice, research, etc.), giving our fellows opportunity to be able to choose freely any type of cardiology career.

To achieve this mission we aim to expose you to a large volume of clinical cases, procedures, research, and educational conferences to produce independent and efficient practitioners. You will obtain at least level 2 training in all required areas of cardiology, including full spectrum of noninvasive cardiology and diagnostic invasive procedures. We allow you to complete multiple “partial boards” during the training (i.e. echo, nuclear, cardiac CT) for the purposes of comprehensive training. Upon graduation, you will succeed in the broad scope of cardiology with independence and efficiency in any type of clinical setting.

When we are not in the midst of a pandemic, our fellows travel to conferences enhancing their knowledge as well as presenting research at a national and international level. You will join a team of highly motived clinical research fellows and faculty. You will write peer-review publications and present abstracts at most esteemed cardiology meetings.

We are excited to share that this year we will be expanding our Match from two fellows to three! Our small but mighty team of six will become a team of nine by 2024 (plus one interventional fellow). Our small group allows faculty to inspire and educate you as a fellow in training to develop your own distinctive individual skills as a future cardiologist. It also allows you to exceed the requirements set by the ACGME by vast numbers.

We are very proud of our graduates and current fellows. We would love you to join our fellowship and add to our list of successful alumni.



Adam Stys, MD

Fellowship Program Director