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It's An Honor To Lead The SNMA

Posted By Cynthia Bell, Monday, July 10, 2017

  I am beyond excited and honored to lead the Student National Medical Association as the 2017-2018 National President! This organization means so much to me and I wholeheartedly believe I wouldn’t be the medical student that I am today if it weren’t for the SNMA. I have been involved with the SNMA for over a decade now, and it was back in 2007 when I attended my first Annual Medical Education Conference (AMEC) in San Francisco. I look forward to not only a successful year, but the full circle moment that will take place as I end my term at the 2018 AMEC in San Francisco, which is the same AMEC location that inspired me to continue to be a part of the SNMA.

The SNMA has provided me with the support, encouragement and resources to succeed in my journey toward becoming a physician. It has also incited my passion to continue the pursuit of medicine and dedicate myself to a life of service. It is my goal to incite the same passion in both pre-medical and medical students across the country this year.

I created my executive agenda for the 2017-2018 year with the desire to give back and make a way for those who come behind me. To address healthcare disparities within our communities and to enhance and develop our membership, I hope to lead SNMA specifically in:

  • Providing membership with community service opportunities in rural and inner city areas, Indian reservations, as well as Caribbean locations where some of our students receive their medical education, through mission trips to underserved communities and building partnerships with organizations, such as the Student Osteopathic Medical Association.
  • Engaging and providing resources to our students from various ethnic backgrounds through webinars, community programming and social media outlets.
  • Expanding the Pre-Medical Minority Enrichment and Development programming to include the unique skill sets of non-traditional students.
  • Showing the world "We Do Exist" by highlighting and recognizing our contribution to healthcare as both underrepresented minority students and physicians.
  • Stressing the mission of the SNMA that is supporting current and future underrepresented minority students, addressing the needs of the underserved, and increasing the number of clinically excellent, culturally competent and socially conscious physicians.

As a non-traditional student and a single mother, I understand firsthand why the SNMA should provide support to premeds as they go through the process of making it through college, taking gap years and applying to medical school. My agenda reflects this. As an underrepresented minority and future osteopathic physician, I am thankful for the opportunity to use my platform as a voice for both groups in medicine. There remains a lack of diversity in health care professions across the nation, which makes it nearly impossible to provide the best culturally competent care to underrepresented minority patient populations. I also recognize the need to support the diversity of the SNMA on a level that goes beyond race to promote community service and enhance partnerships with other organizations committed to doing the same. This year will show the SNMA’s dedication to making sure all of its members succeed, and it is my hope that my work over the next year with the SNMA will help address some of these issues and pave the way for future generations of aspiring physicians. My agenda reflects all of this, and I am excited to see another year of excellence from our membership. 

Danielle M. Ward, MS
SNMA National President

Tags:  #SNMA 

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