Diamanta Panford, a first-year College of Medicine student, and Phoebe Otchere, a second-year College of Medicine student, are teaming up to engage, educate and challenge the NEOMED community to become more culturally competent through the University’s Student National Medical Association chapter.
Tell us about SNMA.
DP and PO: SNMA is a professional organization 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. It is the oldest and largest student run organization. The founding chapters began at two Historically Black Universities: Meharry Medical College and Howard University College of Medicine.
Who can become involved with SNMA?
DP and PO: We welcome ANYONE to our events and meetings – students, faculty and staff – who shares our mission to address cultural humility, racial equality/equity, health disparities and the diversification of the health care field.
We would love to see more students, faculty, and staff of all cultures and backgrounds at our events this upcoming year! Follow us on Instagram @neomed_snma for more updates!
Why do you encourage students to join SNMA?
DP and PO: Locally, our NEOMED SNMA chapter strives to provide events and community service projects that will support medical students in their journey to become better informed and culturally sensitive physicians. As a national organization, we are connected to 170 other medical school chapters around the country. Students who are interested can register for the national SNMA chapter and gain access to an abundance of resources and networks.
In your opinion, why is it important for a student org like SNMA to be present at NEOMED?
DP and PO: Primarily, URM organizations seek to provide resources and support for minority students. On the other hand, minority organizations can also be an important resource for collaboration with other student organizations. The NEOMED chapter of SNMA is dedicated to programming that will engage, educate and challenge the student body in efforts to create physicians that are well-rounded and culturally competent.
Who serves on SNMA’s board?
- Phoebe Otchere, president
- Diamanta Panford, vice president
- Sahar Rehman, treasurer
- Anish Mandala, secretary
- Saimanthra Ganesh, social media chair
- Timilehin Ogunjana, community service chair
- An incoming M1 to be named as the mentorship chair