A host of opportunities

Fourth-year medical student Marielle Gross stayed with alumna Andreea Nemes through the H.O.S.T. Program. Photo courtesy of Marielle Gross

Fourth-year medical student Marielle Gross stayed with alumna Andreea Nemes, M.D. ’09, through the HOST program. Photo courtesy of Marielle Gross

When Marielle Gross entered the guest bedroom of a New York duplex, her home away from home during two days of residency interviews, she found cupcakes and a comfortable space to “de-stress.”

Gross, MS4, stayed with Andreea Nemes, M.D. ’09, in October through the UF College of Medicine’s HOST program.

HOST (Help Our Students Travel) matches fourth-year students with alumni who provide accommodations — along with residency advice and information about the community and the medical institution — to students on interview trips.

“It’s a really great program,” Gross said. “The students from other schools I met on the interview trail wished they had something like it.”

The two bonded over stories about medical school, UF faculty and life in Gainesville; Nemes even lent Gross a book written by her mentor at Mount Sinai Hospital, where she is an assistant professor and emergency medicine specialist.

Nemes, who stayed with locals during interviews herself, enjoys meeting students through the HOST program who are in the same position she was just a few years earlier.

“It makes me feel like I can give something back to the University of Florida — it’s my way of saying thank you for everything they’ve done for me,” she said. “It allows me to stay connected … and reminds me where I came from.”