Founded in 1964 at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tennessee, and Howard University School of Medicine in Washington, DC, the Student National Medical Association (SNMA) is the oldest and largest med student organization addressing the health concerns of minorities and underserved peoples. SNMA has grown to over 6,000 members at universities across the country.
SNMA’s mission is to address the needs of medically underserved communities and communities of color. Additionally, SNMA supports underrepresented minority medical students and encourages culturally sensitive medical education and services. SNMA enlists the ingenuity and altruism of medical students across all cultural and ethnic categories in order to enrich those communities that have historically been underserved and marginalized. A division of the National Medical Association.
The Women in Medicine Club (WIM) is dedicated to examining the role of women in the medical profession. WIM, whose meetings and membership are open to both sexes, holds seminars and discussions on topics dealing with both women’s health issues (fertility, sexual abuse, pregnancy) and the unique challenges facing women in the medical profession (child rearing, social dynamics, etc). In past years, the Club sponsored a mentoring program with women physicians in the Charlottesville area, a Red Dress Brunch in February, and community service opportunities in Charlottesville.
The Latino Medical Student Association at UVA is devoted to meeting the unique interests and needs of Latin American/Hispanic medical students. These interests include efforts to promote health outreach to Spanish-speaking patients, help students become approved for interpreting services, raise awareness about Latino health issues, and foster community among Latin American medical students and friends. LMSA collaborates with other student associations to promote the recruitment and retention of Latino medical students. Also, students can voice their concerns about issues pertinent to the Latino medical community through LMSA-UVA.
Comida y Conversación is an informal group of medical students who meet to eat lunch and chat in Spanish once a week. Anyone who wants to practice their Spanish is welcome to meet on Thursdays at noon with their lunch on the Medical School Terrace outside the Student Lounge or in the first floor lobby. All levels of Spanish – none, studied it in middle school, majored in it in college – are welcome.
Punjabi MD is a dance group formed in 2010 that performs a traditional dance called Bhangra from the Northern Indian state of Punjab. Punjab is known as the ‘bread basket’ of India because it has a history of being so rich in farmland. Bhangra evolved from this region based on old farming techniques. It is a colorful dance that traditionally brings people together to celebrate the harvest season, weddings, birthdays, and other celebrations. The group integrates modern and customary beats to provide all audiences with entertainment. Punjabi MD performs for medical school and University events as well as at local schools and charity events.
qMD is a club that serves as a resource for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) issues in medicine and for queer students and their allies. qMD is dedicated to raising awareness of topics concerning LGBT patients and medical professionals for the benefit of the community and medical education.