Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine virtually hosted the 2020 Leadership Institute for Region VIII of the Student National Medical Association (SNMA) on Oct. 10.
SNMA is committed to supporting current and future underrepresented minority medical students, addressing the needs of underserved communities and increasing the number of clinically excellent, culturally-competent and socially-conscious physicians. Region VIII includes SNMA chapters at nine medical schools from Delaware, Pennsylvania and West Virginia.
As part of its 2020 theme, “The Resilience of a Leader: Adjusting our vision to complete the mission,” the Regional Leadership Institute focused on effective leadership development and preservation for future leadership, along with exercises in team-building and communication skills.
The keynote address was delivered by Patrice A. Harris, M.D., M.A., a Bluefield, West Virginia, native who earned her medical degree from West Virginia University. Now a practicing psychiatrist in Atlanta, Georgia, Harris served as the 174th president of the American Medical Association, making her the first African American woman to hold this position. She now serves as the organization’s immediate past president and has chaired the AMA’s Opioid Task Force since its inception in 2014.
The SNMA chapter at Marshall was founded by medical students in 2019. The members work with the school of medicine’s pathway programs and other outreach events and opportunities, and also leads the Diversity, Inclusion and Community Building Town Hall series, which was developed to facilitate awareness, education and discussion on a variety of diversity and inclusion issues that impact the medical school and its surrounding communities.