Organized by the NEOMED affiliate of the American Medical Women’s Association (AMWA), students gathered in the atrium outside Watanakunakorn Auditorium at 10 a.m. Wednesday to participate in a national walkout focused on preventing gun violence. They joined students across the country (including at Bio-Med Science Academy on the NEOMED campus) in walking out of classes to commemorate the hour a month earlier when a shooter attacked Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.
Before Wednesday’s walkout, NEOMED administration issued a letter in support of student advocacy. Numerous members of NEOMED’s faculty and staff joined the student-led event.
Elisabeth Young, M.D., dean of the College of Medicine, greeted the group and introduced the two student co-presidents of AMWA, Sara Al-Haddad and Sindhura Vallabhaneni (pictured from left to right below)—both second-year students in the College of Medicine. The students presented AMWA’s public statement calling gun violence ‘’an urgent public health issue, requiring effective, evidence-based, and common-sense solutions.’’
Joan B. Webster, M.D., adjunct assistant professor of family and community medicine, followed the student presentation with brief comments, noting, “Courage takes all forms’’ and commending the participants for attending. With a moment of silence and the ringing of a small bell, once for each of the 17 people who died in Parkland, the commemoration closed.