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NBC News Honors Christen Johnson During Black History Month

Posted By Cynthia Bell, Monday, February 13, 2017
 SNMA President Christen Johnson is being honored during Black History Month as a part of NBCBLK28 a series of article developed by NBC News to recognize the accomplishments of 28 African American innovators, vanguards, trendsetters and pioneers under 28 years old. According to NBC, "This year's crop is redefining what it means to be young, gifted and unapologetically Black. Make sure you check out Christen’s story on February 24th.

Christen described the being honored by NBC as "humbling and speechless,” and that the "honor is not only for me, but for SNMA.” Being President not only gives Christen a chance to change the way minorities look at medicine, but also as "[a] opportunity to inspire people.”

When asked what prompted her to go into the medical field, Christen recalls a story when she was younger and had an ear infection. She was treated by a black physician who let her play with the instruments. From that experience, Christen discovered that she didn’t chose medicine but "medicine chose her.”

To be a minority pursuing the medical field has always been intimidating for many people, and it often discourages them from pursuing the field. However, Christen described African American history as going "beyond the USA.” The "first doctors came from Africa” as slaves and were brought to treat various ailments. Therefore, the field of medicine is "in our blood.”

Remember to friend SNMA on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

Tags:  #IheartSNMA  #SNMA 

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Register Today for AMEC 2017!!!

Posted By Cynthia Bell, Tuesday, November 15, 2016
 The holidays are just around the corner, but so is SNMA’s Annual Medical Education Conference (AMEC). Each year, more than 1200 medical and pre-medical students gather for one of the nation's premiere and most diverse medical education conferences. SNMA’s AMEC 2017 will be held in Atlanta, Georgia from April 12-16, 2017.

This year’s theme, Lighting the Way: Creating Health Equity through Education, Advocacy and Service, will highlight the importance of community engagement and clinical excellence in solving the health disparities of today. The focus will be on opportunities for students to grow as future physicians while directly interfacing with the community in Atlanta and elsewhere. AMEC will also feature plenary sessions tackling the complexities of implicit bias and microaggressions in medical education, the impact of violence on public health, and the importance of physician advocacy in health care. Students will be provided with the opportunity to expand their knowledge through a host of innovative professional development workshops, yielding hands-on clinical skills and the tools to plan for their continued success.

For Attendee Registration, Click here.

· Hotel reservation at the Hyatt Regency, Click here.

For Exhibitor Registration, Click here.

More information about AMEC 2017 can be found at

  • Check out the latest AMEC updates under the Events tab at the top of the home page for details, such as Fees and Registration, Travel Accommodations, Conference at a Glance. 
  • Click the AMEC banner ad at the top of the home page to register.
  • See pertinent AMEC registration info under the Events section at the bottom of the home page.
  • View the AMEC 2017 Promotional Video in the upper right corner of the home page.
  • Browse the photo galleries from AMEC 2016.

Look for more information in the upcoming months on AMEC 2017 speakers, workshops, and all that AMEC and Atlanta has to offer. But, keep these dates in mind as you plan for the best AMEC ever!

  • Regular Registration: November 1, 2016 – March 10, 2017 (last date for cancellations)
  • Late Registration: March 11, 2017 – April 10, 2017
  • Online Registration Ends: March 24, 2017
  • Hotel Registration Rate Ends: March 28, 2017

Remember to friend SNMA onFacebook, and follow us onTwitterandInstagram.

Tags:  #SNMA 

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Thoughts with Orlando

Posted By Cynthia Bell, Wednesday, June 15, 2016

 The news of the events at the Orlando Pulse Night Club is a reminder of our mission.  In what President Obama has described as an act of terror and hate, we are reminded that these acts of senseless violence continue to impact minority communities.  Gun violence is more than an issue that can be left to legislators, it is truly a public health issue, cutting years off of precious lives.

In 2001, the Student National Medical Association adopted a position against gun violence in hopes of encouraging our participation, as an organization, in initiatives to begin to solve this issue. This concern remains today, even now as we continue to lose innocent people to gun violence. Doing our part to fight this health disparity, we have signed a petition in collaboration with over 100 other organizations to end the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ban on gun violence research. Further, we are dedicating October, our Month of Service, to efforts of preventing violence in the communities that we serve.

As we mourn the loss of 49 innocent people and support the 53 wounded, the Student National Medical Association extends our deepest condolences to the all of those affected by this tragedy. Our hearts and thoughts are with you.

Yours in SNMA,

Christen D. Johnson

National President

Student National Medical Association

Tags:  #SNMA 

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Up Close: Meet the SNMA Headquarters Staff

Posted By Cynthia Bell, Thursday, March 17, 2016
  The Student National Medical Association's (SNMA) National Headquarters (HQ) building is centrally located on Georgia Avenue, in the heart of Northwest Washington, DC, equidistant to the White House and the National Institutes of Health. The HQ staff members play pivotal roles in the execution of the daily operations of the SNMA. Although the HQ staff work tirelessly and consistently throughout the year, much of the work they do occurs behind the scenes. Furthermore, as a result of their many years spent working for the SNMA, they have a wealth of institutional knowledge, having seen the SNMA change and grow over the years. In the coming month the Internal Affairs Committee will be highlighting members of the HQ staff, providing their background and perspective. We hope these snippets will offer more insight into the inner workings of SNMA and the people who help to make it all possible.

Annette McLane

Annette McLane is the Associate Director of Programs and Conference Services. The current breath and scope of the Annual Medical Education Conference (AMEC), as well as its growing popularity and attendance, keep Ms. McLane very busy. Her full-time responsibilities include staging and directing the onsite management of the annual conference and working with the rest of the staff to organize the quality programming that many of us enjoy each year. She also helps to organize and manage quarterly National Leadership Institutes and Board of Directors meetings.

Mrs. McLane has been part of the SNMA for 25 years, initially working as a consultant, managing the AMEC in 1991 before becoming employed first as Executive Director. She subsequently took on several other roles, before accepting her current position. During that time, she has seen the SNMA go through many transitions, including the monumental effort to purchase and move into the National Headquarters building in 2000. One of the challenges for all the staff each year, she says, has been, and continues to be, the annual change in Board leadership. Another challenge, is maintaining a consistent and sound financial base. However, despite these challenges she remains motivated by all that the SNMA has to offer. She states:

"As a non-profit, we have no commodity to sell, no tangible product … no books or widgets, no toasters to give to new members. We have to entice members and supporters with an idea, with our mission. What we have to sell is LOVE. We sell love through the administration of our community service protocols and the learning and camaraderie enjoyed at AMEC each year. Progressively, we promote a vision that quality healthcare can be made a reality available to everyone and that students of color can and will become the best healthcare professionals in the world.”

This is a dedication, a drive and a goal that all SNMA members can emulate and share. Her commitment to the SNMA is rooted in an ideal that we should all strive for: Pay it forward.

Tags:  #SNMA  AMEC 

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Congratulations Graduating Seniors on Your Matches

Posted By Cynthia Bell, Friday, March 27, 2015


Match Day, the third Friday of March, has come and gone. Many SNMA members and other graduating medical students nationwide have been match to residency programs. Below are graduating seniors who have updated the YM profile to notify us of their recent match. Congratulations and we’ll see you at AMEC 2015 in New Orleans.

SNMA Member                                 Facility

Osasumwen Asemota                       Nassau University Medical Center

Ashley S. Balentine                           USC Anesthesiology 

Bralin J. Bean                                    Belle Glade, Florida - Family Medicine 

Damian Campbell                              University of Texas at Austin Dell Children's Medical

 Child Neurology

Nejlah M. Clark                                  Newark Beth Israel (Emergency Medicine) 

Lauren Cooper                                  University of Chicago Medical Center 

Omotore F. Eruvwetere                     Anesthesiology- Ochsner Health System

Shanté Hill                                         University of South Alabama Medical Centers 

Armetria Humphrey                            Loyola Cook County- Family Medicine 

Osato I. Iyamu                                    Yale Internal Medicine Primary Care 

Nicole M. Jackson                              Boston University Medical Center - Family Medicine 

Stephanie E. Kuntz                            Orange Regional Medical Center-Middletown, NY 

Ebony M. McKinnies                          LSU SOM New Orleans- Neurology 

Alicia Morehead-Gee                         University of California San Francisco 

Rose A. Parks                                     Crozer-Keystone Health System 

Marc Parris                                        Anesthesia & Pediatrics, University of California, Irvine 

H. Westley Phillips                             Neurosurgery-New York University 

Tricia Prince M.S.                               PM&R 

Jjais Richards                                    Loyola Pediatrics Residency Program 

Topaz Sampson                                 Baylor Hospital (Houston)

Rodrick L. Stewart                             University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

 Shadyside Hospital Family Medicine   

Tulani K. Washington-Plaskett           Morehouse School of Medicine 

George S. Yankey                              Duke University Medical Center                            


If you have NOT let us about your match, simply go into Your Membership (YM) and update your profile. The match option is near the bottom of your profile. An updated match list will be circulated following AMEC 2015.

Look for upcoming “Grand Rounds” containing more information about member benefits, SNMA programs, alumni activities and much more. If you have an idea for “Grand Rounds,” email

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Tags:  #AMEC2015  #SNMA 

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What does SNMA mean to me?

Posted By Cynthia Bell, Thursday, March 5, 2015

One of my most poignant memories during medical school came one evening as I was studying for a neurology exam. By far one of the most challenging courses for me that semester, I had scored poorly on the midterm. In fact, I flat out failed. At that devastating moment in my academic career, I questioned my intelligence. Was I even smart enough to be in medical school?  Did I belong here? Had I made the wrong decision? What was I doing wrong? 

I had made a few mediocre grades in the past, but usually anything less than a solid B required reinforcements—study groups, tutors, whatever it took. As I sat at my table looking down at piles of notes, highlighters, diagrams and slides, I had no idea where to start and wanted to give up. 

Then I thought, if I quit what will I do about SNMA? I was the chapter president. I had to go to the annual conference, right? Yes, and no. As I sat there wallowing in self-pity, I gave myself a severe reality check. This journey was not about me. It was about all the giants on whose shoulders I was standing, about the sacrifices that my parents and grandparents made for me to be there. It was about all the people who were definitely smarter than me, but weren’t afforded the opportunity to attend medical school. It was about making a commitment to the students behind me, to be able to share my story of how to persevere when times get rough. It was about finishing the course so I could be the voice of the silenced and the ignored. 

I was SNMA. I am SNMA. So I, made a cup of coffee, picked up my highlighters and decided to pass the next test, and the next one, and the one after that. For me, SNMA reminded me of my purpose

I have wanted to be a doctor since I was little, seven to be exact. I dreamt of being the kind of doctor that took care of babies, which at the time I thought meant I would be a pediatrician. Who knew, instead I would find the road to obstetrics and gynecology. I am currently practicing with a hospital-based group near Norristown, PA and I have served as a Professional Board Member for SNMA for the past four years. I knew SNMA would be a significant part of my life as soon as I stepped into my first meeting. The leaders modeled the medical student and rising physician that I wanted to be. 

SNMA proved to be pivotal in all aspects of my training and I attempted to participate on all levels, local, regional and national. I served as chapter president, assistant regional director and on the national membership committee. We were greatly honored to host the regional conference at my home institution during my fourth year and I knew then it would only be a matter of time before I returned to serve the organization in a professional capacity. 

AMEC is just around the corner, April 1-5 in New Orleans. Don’t miss your opportunity to attend 2015 AMEC and stay active with SNMA. Sunday, March 8th is the deadline for online registration, so register today!!! To get the AMEC group discount rate at The Hyatt Regency Hotel in New Orleans, make your hotel reservation by March 6th. 


Look for upcoming “Grand Rounds” containing more information about member benefits, SNMA programs, alumni activities and much more. If you have an idea for “Grand Rounds,” email


Friend us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.



Tags:  #AMEC2015  #IheartSNMA  #SNMA  #UnsilencingtheUnheard 

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Why AMEC 2015 is Where You Need To Be

Posted By Cynthia Bell, Thursday, February 26, 2015

 If you have registered for SNMA’s 2015 Annual Medical Education Conference (AMEC), then I look forward to seeing you there. If you are still waiting and deciding if you should register or not, let me give you several reasons why you should waste no more time and register.  SNMA is the nation’s oldest and largest student organization dedicated to addressing the needs of underrepresented communities, supporting the nations current and future physicians, and increasing the number of clinically excellent, culturally competent, and socially conscious physicians.  Here are a few reasons why you should attend AMEC 2015.

Reason 1–AMEC is the largest gathering of minority premeds, medical students, residents, and physicians in the United States. This is an opportunity to meet many of your colleagues that are working to become the next generation of great physicians. Both medical schools and residency programs are coming to AMEC to recruit the talented students of SNMA.

Reason 2–Although AMEC is the largest gathering of minority premeds, medical students and physicians, what is even more impressive is what happens at the conference. As its name states, AMEC is about education. Inspirational speakers from across the nation come to impart their knowledge of medicine, leadership, advocacy and research to name a few topics.  Notable speakers have included Dr. David Satcher and Dr. Levi Watkins and students have always been inspired to learn from them. Keep an eye on the  for the preliminary conference program to be posted with highlights of this year’s conference.

Reason 3–Students will have an opportunity to make decisions about the future of the organization through the House of Delegates (HOD).  While HOD only meets once a year, it is the highest governing body of the organization and the Board of Directors (BOD) answers directly to the HOD. It is in this arena that students can ask questions of the SNMA officers and learn more about what it means to be an officer.  Additionally, the HOD will elect members of the next SNMA administration including the president, vice president and professional board members.  These members will continue to work during the year on your behalf to bring SNMA members extraordinary programing.

Reason  4–The last reason why you should register for the conference is that the people you meet will not only become colleagues, but they will become your family. I have great friends across the country that I can contact to discuss medical school, residency, and beyond; I owe that to SNMA. 

I look forward to seeing them again at this year’s AMEC.  If you see me at conference, stop and say hello, I would love to meet you or take a moment to chat with a friend.

Don't forget that the deadline to register for the 2015 AMEC in New Orleans is Saturday February 28th. So register today at: Late fees will begin on March 1 and the the last day for online registration is March 8th. To ensure the AMEC group discount rate at The Hyatt Regency Hotel, make your reservation by March 6th. 

Look for upcoming “Grand Rounds” containing more information about member benefits, SNMA programs, alumni activities and much more. If you have an idea for “Grand Rounds,” email 

Friend us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.



Tags:  #AMEC2015  #SNMA  #UnsilencingtheUnheard 

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Register Today for AMEC!!!

Posted By Cynthia Bell, Tuesday, January 27, 2015

SNMA’s annual conference, AMEC, is Just Around the Corner on April 1-5 in New Orleans. This year’s conference has something for everyone – renowned speakers, medical education, exhibits, community service, mentoring, networking and lot of fun. Click here to view the 2015 AMEC video.

“Unsilencing the Unheard and the Underserved” is the AMEC 2015 theme that will explore the health disparities of LBGT, immigrant/refugee health, and the lack of minority men entering the field of medicine that has reached a crisis level.

Members are encouraged to register early to get the regular AMEC registration rates that are in effect through February 14. Otherwise, late fees begin on February 15th. The Hyatt Regency Hotel will honor the AMEC group discount rate through March 6. Remember, the last day for online AMEC registration is March 8.

If you are interested in taking the mock exams provided by Kaplan, you must sign up and pay by February 15.

Look for upcoming “Grand Rounds” containing more information about member benefits, SNMA programs, alumni activities and much more. If you have an idea for “Grand Rounds,” email

Friend us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

Tags:  #AMEC2015  #SNMA  #UnsilencingtheUnheard 

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Member Rewards Program Has Advantages Through Your Membership

Posted By Administration, Monday, December 8, 2014


As the Christmas Season gets into full swing, don’t forget to check out the Member Reward Program available to you as a SNMA member through Your Membership (YM). The Member Rewards program gives members exclusive access to elite savings and discounts on thousands of products and services ranging from travel and entertainment to apparel and electronics and much more.

Discounts are available when you sign up with thousands of local and national vendors. Reap the benefits of the Member Reward Program with vendors such as AMC Theatres, Best Buy, Direct TV, Firestone, Macy’s, Men’s Warehouse, Olive Garden, T Mobile, Toyota, Walt Disney World, and many, many more.

In YM, simply click the Member Rewards link within their profile and pay a fee of $19.95 via credit card for one year of access. Then, access the rewards platform by logging into your website and clicking on Member Rewards from your profile menu. You must log into your member community to access the rewards website. Remember, you must also be in good standing with SNMA.

So, join today, browse and save during the holiday season and beyond. SNMA will receive 10 percent of the net revenue for each member that joins.

Look for upcoming “Grand Rounds” containing more information about other member benefits, SNMA programs, alumni activities and much more. If you have an idea for “Grand Rounds,” email

Friend us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.



Tags:  #SNMA 

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Founders Day Celebrated Through Community Service

Posted By Administration, Friday, October 3, 2014
Updated: Friday, October 3, 2014

Topaz Sampson - President              Brittney Phillips  - Chair  of the Board of Directors 


October 4th is Founders Day! As a tribute, many of our chapters  will celebrate that great occasion throughout the month of October with a Day of Service. Starting October 4, chapters will give back to their  communities through service activities focused on nutrition, fitness, health screenings and testing, health fairs and community restoration.

Fifty years ago, the Student National Medical Association (SNMA) was created as a division of the National Medical Association (NMA) to actively support medical students and to encourage future physicians in their pursuit of medical careers. Seven years later, SNMA incorporated into its own legal entity. Since our founding by chapters at Howard University College of Medicine and Meharry Medical College, we have grown to more than 5,500 members with 144 chapters in 10 regions nationwide and in the Caribbean.

Our founders identified a real need to support medical students of color and that need still exists today. According to the recent “Diversity in Medical Education: Facts and Figures 2012” released by the Association of American Medical Colleges, in 1982 men surpassed women in applying to medical schools by more than 2 to 1. By 2011, Black women were 65.6% of applicants, but only 34.4% of applicants were Black men. In that same year, just 38.3% of Black applicants to medical schools – both men and women – were accepted. These statistics show that challenges still persist.

Today, SNMA remains firm to its mission. Our accomplishments are many and we are proud of the work that SNMA continues on behalf of its members. We love SNMA and hear often from members and alumni who say how much they love SNMA. As we celebrate Founders Day, we invite you to join the I <3 SNMA campaign today and share why on Facebook and Twitter, #IHEARTSNMA!

Let us know about your chapter’s news and photos of the National Day of Service activities throughout October on our Facebook and Twitter accounts using #SNMA50th and #SNMAservice. Also, be sure to tag us to events that occur throughout the year or email: with your chapter spotlights. Starting October 6, you will also be able to stay connect with SNMA on Instagram @snma_official.

Look for upcoming “Grand Rounds” on the I <3 SNMA campaign, SNMA programs, AMEC 2015 in New Orleans preview and much more. If you have an idea for “Grand Rounds,” email:


Topaz Sampson
National President


Brittney Phillips 
Board Chairperson



Tags:  #AMEC2015  #FoundersDay  #SNMA 

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