Diversifying the Face of Medicine Since 1964
The Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, School of Medicine (TTUHSC SOM) is proud to spotlight the Student National Medical Association (SNMA) this week in honor of Black History Month.
SNMA is nationally 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.”
The TTUHSC SOM SNMA Chapter was founded in January 2001 and continues to support this mission through many endeavors.
SNMA advises undergraduate students through Texas Tech University’s Multicultural Association of Premedical Students (MAPS), focusing on the needs and concerns of minority students. SNMA hosts annual free public health fairs, and events offering health screenings and educational activities for the community.
Briget Hyde, the 2019-2020 SNMA President, believes the TTUHSC SOM SNMA chapter helps to empower not just other minority medical students but also younger students from elementary to college.
“To be able to be that role model for a child or aspiring medical student is a blessing and one of the best gifts I can give to others, and to myself.”
Briget Hyde, 2019-2020 SNMA President
SNMA annually hosts elementary students for “Doctors for a Day,” allowing fifth grade students a unique, fun, and educational experience to “cultivate the students’ interest in medicine as a potential career path."
In 2020 and 2021 members of the SNMA chapter assisted with various community outreach initiatives regarding COVID-19 and vaccine information.
In December 2021, the SNMA hosted their 12th annual gala to raise funds for scholarships. To date, this annual event has raised over $350,000! These scholarships lessen the financial burdens of tuition and educational materials for medical students. Many scholarship recipients have paid forward their gifts through volunteering, passing down resources, and donating funds for future scholarships.
In 2020, the SNMA officers continued the tradition of the gala (despite the pandemic) hosting the event virtually. They successfully raised $30,000 donated to various Lubbock charities who support minority initiatives in the community.
SNMA is a voice for diversity, for abolishing health care disparities for everyone, and for exposing unconscious bias on our wards, clinics, and classrooms.
Dean Berk has served as an SNMA Councilor at TTUHSC SOM, and previously in East Tennessee, for over 30 years. Dr. Berk said “I appreciate SNMA’s contributions to improve the teaching and learning environment and looks forward to Dr. Kenneth Iwuji joining him as the SNMA Co-Councilor this July”.
For more information on the SNMA, visit www.snma.org.
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