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Welcome from the President

Greetings SNMA,

It is an amazing honor and privilege to serve as your National President, and I welcome you to the 2017-2018 administrative year!

This year's executive agenda is focused on Embracing the Diversity of the SNMA, as we have such a unique membership that deserves to be both spotlighted and enriched. We will work on "Filling the Gaps" with a programmatic focus based on strengthening diversity through cultural competency and awareness, and we will "Build the Future" by inspiring our youth to become the empowered physicians of tomorrow.

Additionally, we will show the world that "We Do Exist" by highlighting and recognizing our contribution to healthcare as both underrepresented minority students and physicians. Additionally, it is important that we continue to stress the mission of the SNMA which is supporting current and future underrepresented minority students, addressing the needs of the underserved, and increasing the number of clinically excellent, culturally competent and socially conscious physicians. My goal is for every member to not only know this mission, but actively take part in upholding it. It is my hope that you all will join me in my efforts this year to succeed in furthering this extremely valuable mission. I look forward to working with you all this year, and seeing all the brilliance, positive collaborations, passion and engagement from our membership.

I am excited for the year ahead and I look forward to seeing the amazing work put forth by our wonderful members. There are many ways to get involved this year, and you can start by reaching out to your local and regional leaders for more information on upcoming programs and initiatives. We would also love to see you serve on one of our national committees, and most importantly, I look forward to seeing everyone at the next Annual Medical Education Conference set to take place in San Francisco, CA March 28 - April 1, 2018!

Thank you for your continued dedication to the SNMA, and I look forward to the amazing year ahead!

Yours in SNMA,

Danielle M. Ward, MS
2017-2018 SNMA National President


SNMA is a student-governed organization with more than 6,000 members nationwide and in the Caribbean. The ultimate governing body of SNMA is the House of Delegates (HOD), which is made up of all active SNMA members. The HOD convenes annually at the SNMA National Convention, held in conjunction with the Annual Medical Education Conference, to make important decisions about the organization's direction and declarations regarding health policy and the state of health care. The speaker of the house, assisted by the parliamentarian, presides over the HOD.


The Board of Directors (BOD) is a smaller group of individuals comprised of HOD-elected officers and appointed committee members. The BOD has an Executive Committee that includes the following national officers: chairperson of the Board of Directors, president, president-elect, vice president, pre-medical board member, treasurer, secretary, parliamentarian, speaker of the house, ten regional directors, four professional board members, committee chairs, the executive director, and emeritus members. The BOD meets quarterly to make business and policy decisions in accordance with the SNMA Constitution and Bylaws during the period that the HOD is not in session. The presiding officer is the chairperson of the BOD. The BOD reports its actions over the course of the year and puts forth mandated items for HOD approval at the National Convention.

Board of Directors


SNMA is made up of 10 regions around the country. Each region is overseen by a Regional Director, elected from their respective region. Regional Boards are mainly comprised of the following elected regional officers: Regional Director, Assistant Regional Director, Pre-medical Liaison, Secretary, Treasurer, and Committee Chairs (corresponding to national committees). Each region hosts an annual Regional Conference at which a regional meeting is held. Each region has its own Constitution and Bylaws, which must be held in accordance with and not in violation of the Constitution and Bylaws of National SNMA.

Map of the 10 SNMA Regions


Nationwide, members of the Student National Medical Association serve on various national committees that help plan SNMA’s activities and make the Annual Medical Education Conference possible. As the oldest and largest student-run organization, SNMA seeks to support current and future underrepresented minority medical students, address the needs of underserved communities, and increase the number of clinically excellent, culturally competent and socially conscious physicians. The SNMA would not be the organization that it is today if it were not for the hard work, dedication and support of its members.

National Committees


The Strategic Planning Council (SPC) is made up of elected members and ex-offico members (national president-elect, treasurer, BOD chair and executive director). The SPC meets to discuss the future direction for SNMA and is responsible for updating the SNMA Strategic Plan and other planning documents, and conducting organizational assessments.


SNMA's National Headquarters is located in Washington, DC. The Headquarters staff is comprised of the executive director, professional staff and volunteers. The executive director is responsible for the daily operations of SNMA and works closely with the Chair of the Board of Directors.