Topaz Sampson, a second-year medical student at the Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine, has been selected the 2013-2014 president-elect of the Student National Medical Association (SNMA), the oldest and largest student-run organization focused on the needs and concerns of medical students of color.
The nonprofit organization, which includes more than 6,000 medical students, premedical students, residents and physicians, 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.
“The mission of the SNMA is one that resonates within me,” said Sampson, who served as president of her first-year medical school class. “As we enter into the 50th anniversary of the founding of the SNMA, the SNMA should reflect on this mission and ensure that we stay true to our purpose. My hope is that over the next 50 years, the SNMA continues to be firmly grounded in our principles and made more efficient through the utilization of technology.”
Sampson served as the webmaster and social chairperson of the Wright State chapter of the SNMA and as the SNMA Region V webmaster. In that role, she implemented creative ways of using technology to maintain the regional website and introduce the executive board to the membership. She also was selected as one of 20 SNMA Future Leadership Project Fellows.
In addition to her work with SNMA, Sampson volunteers monthly at Reach Out of Montgomery County, a free medical clinic in Dayton that serves the uninsured and underserved. She also served on the student committee for the selection of the dean of the medical school and a student committee for the selection of the medical school’s academic advisor. She has led the coordination of class events and community service. In addition, she coordinates weekly student tour guides for interviewing students.
“Topaz is a talented student leader at the Boonshoft School of Medicine,” said Gary LeRoy, M.D., associate dean for student affairs and admissions. “She is passionate about the SNMA and will work to make positive changes as she leads the SNMA into its next 50 years.”