Check out the February 2012 edition of AMWA Student NewsFlash!
AMWA Student NewsFlash
February 2012
Inside this issue...


The Women in Cardiology (WIC) Section of the American College of Cardiology (ACC) invites AMWA members to attend the WIC brown-bag lunch, meeting, and reception events at the ACC's Annual Scientific Session in Chicago, IL on March 24-26, 2012. Please RSVP by Friday, March 2, 2012.

Applications for the Heller Outstanding Branch Award are open through March 15. Tell us why your local AMWA branch deserves special recognition. Applications available for download here and on our Awards page.

Attend the AMWA National Conference! April 13-15, 2012 in Miami! Click here for information.

Bed and Breakfast Program is in full swing! Click here for more information.

Please continue to send financial questions and concerns to Kam Lam so that she can forward them to our financial expert Stephen Dunbar to answer in upcoming editions of AMWA Student NewsFlash.

Calling all branch presidents - we hope that you'll forward these AMWA Student NewsFlash newsletters to your local branch members monthly. Thanks for your help with spreading the AMWA love far and wide!

Note from the Editor

Lauren Wolchok, National Secretary

Congratulations to our Spring 2012 scholarship and grant winners! I look forward to seeing your events come to life and have been very impressed with how our Fall 2011 winners have applied their funds - check out their event descriptions in this edition!

Also, 2012 is an election year, and this edition of the AMWA Student NewsFlash is full of tips and ways for you to get involved with advocating for women's rights and issues affecting women's health. I hope you'll keep us informed of what you and your local AMWA branches are up to on the political front, and I'm looking forward to seeing you at National Conference, which is just around the corner!
National Conference Around the Corner: April 13-15 in Miami, FL

AMWA's Annual Meeting is the leading strategic career and personal development conference for women physicians, medical students and residents. Session topics range from mentoring and breaking the glass ceiling to issues in global women's health such as stroke risk, cardiovascular disease, HPV, and advances in imaging.

Keynote speakers include Rachel Naomi Remen, the 
founding director of the Institute for the Study of Health and Illness and clinical professor of Family and Community Medicine at UCSF, and noted feminist, activist, and author Gloria Steinem.

Visit AMWA's Upcoming Events page for general conference information and here for information specifically relevant to students.

AMWA Branch/ Regional Grant Recipients Apply Funds to Original Events  

Congratulations to our branch and regional grant winners! The Spring 2012 grants were just awarded to Region 5 (AL, LA, MS, TN, TX, and the Caribbean) and local AMWA branches at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, the University of Illinois Chicago College of Medicine, and the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill School of Medicine.

Meanwhile, our Fall 2011 winners have been putting their funds toward excellent AMWA programming.  Read on to see what they've been up to!

University of Miami Miller School of Medicine received an event grant and hosted a successful "meet and greet" round table luncheon featuring Dr. Lt. Kristen Trinca, who spoke on her medical career in the Army.

Indiana University School of Medicine - South Bend received an event grant that enabled successful fundraiser for the Women's Task Force which supports women's health and cancer detection and prevention. AMWA students sold bead necklaces at Notre Dame fooball tailgates and organized the Stash Bash, a raffle and dinner event where patient survivors and oncologists shared their stories and men supporters fundraised by growing their 'staches . AMWA raised $3400 for the Women's Task Force.

Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University received an event grant and hosted a Charity Wine and Beer Tasting and Raffle to benefit Gardeners for Hope (the Joan Balch Breast Cancer Fund), which provides wigs, prostheses, and health products to breast cancer patients. Medical student volunteers played live music at this well attended event that raised almost $1000.

Wayne State School of Medicine received an event grant to host the Women to Women Soirree at a Detroit restaurant. There were more than 80 attendees and speakers included branch president Alicia Eby on the history and role of women in medicine and physicians involved in AMWA.

Region 1 (CT, MA, ME, NH, RI, and VT) applied their regional event grant toward the 2nd annual regional student brunch attended by more than 70 students. Speakers included National President-Elect Linda Wang on AMWA's advocacy work and the benefits of national AMWA membership, Dr. Michelle Sia on substance abuse in pregnancy, and Dr. Robert Witzburg on HIV/AIDS advocacy.

Region 2 (NY NJ) applied their regional grant to dine in style on the Upper East Side and shared resources and ideas for events, planned for national conference, and generally had a great time celebrating women in medicine.


Advocacy Update: Controversy Over Contraception

Brittany Jackson, National Student AMWA Advocacy Chair
In January, the Obama Administration announced that with the exception of churches and synagogues, nonprofit employers who currently do not cover birth control because of religious affiliations would now be required to cover contraception in their health insurance plans.  This provision is one of ten preventive health services for women proposed by the Institute of Medicine and subsequently adopted into the Affordable Care Act by the Department of Health and Human Services this past summer.  Ultimately, this development meant that a woman’s access to co-pay free contraception would not be dictated by her employer.  AMWA subsequently released a statement praising Obama for this decision.

However, following outcry and resistance from religious groups, the Obama Administration announced a compromise regarding this requirement.  Rather than religiously affiliated charities and universities having to pay for contraception, the cost would instead be shifted to the insurance companies.  This approach models the system used in Hawaii, where employees of such organizations receive a side benefit from the insurance company to cover contraception.  It remains to be seen whether a similar system could be developed on a national level, as well as whether it will perpetuate barriers to contraception for women.  With this in mind, stay tuned for new developments on this issue.  For more information, consider signing the petition developed by the Coalition to Protect Women’s Health for updates and ways that you can advocate for women’s health. Ref: NYT.

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week: Feb 26 - Mar 3

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week is February 26 - March 3, 2012. According to the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) website, "In the United States, as many as 10 million females and 1 million males are fighting a life and death battle with an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia. Millions more are struggling with binge eating disorder." Check out the NEDA website for more information, resources, and posters, and click here to get involved in a NEDA walk in your area, because everybody knows somebody.  

AAUW Launches Get Out the Vote Campaign

With the “It’s My Vote: I Will Be Heard” voter education and turnout campaign, the American Association of University Women (AAUW) Action Fund is making sure women know what’s at stake in the 2012 elections and where their candidates stand on issues critical to women and girls. Click here to learn more about the campaign and here to review your congressional representatives' voting records on key women's issues.

AMWA Accolades

Congratulations to our Spring 2012 Grant and Scholarship Awardees!
Medical Education Scholarships ($1000)
Preethi Raghu
Sophia Termini

Branch Grants ($300)
David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
University of Illinois Chicago College of Medicine
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill School of Medicine

Regional Grants ($500)
Region 5 (AL, LA, MS, TN, TX, and the Caribbean)

Also, check out what these inspiring AMWA branches have been up to:
Boston University AMWA hosted the evening seminar Daring To Ask: An Interactive Workshop on Negotiation, led by Sarah Elisabeth Curi, JD, MPH. Atty. The workshop centered on helping women advocate for themselves in the workplace and work towards shattering that glass ceiling.

Albany Medical College AMWA welcomed WWE wrestler, comedian, and New York Times best-selling author Mick Foley to speak on his work with the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) to a diverse audience of students, residents, deans, social workers, and community representatives. This event fit in nicely with AMC's recent efforts to promote awareness of intimate partner violence. AMC is working toward including topics of domestic violence in their medical school curriculum and recently organized an Interpersonal Violence Awareness Week.
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