Medical school students share experiences from the 2022 RISE conference

Every year the American Academy of Medical Colleges (AAMC) hosts an annual conference in Washington, DC, called RISE: Developing Future Leaders in Academic Medicine & Science. The curriculum for the free, two-and-a-half-day meeting focuses on four core areas: relationships, influence, self-awareness and effectiveness.

The purpose of this conference is to serve as a leadership development seminar for those entering their second year of medical school.  Prospective participants must be nominated by their institutions to attend.

This year, UT Health San Antonio’s Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine was represented by Chioma Stephanie Owo from Sugarland, Texas, and Abigail Johnson from Phoenix, Arizona.

Chioma Owo, Class of 2025, Long School of Medicine

“There were approximately 50 medical students in attendance at RISE from all across the country who were actively pursuing prominent leadership opportunities within their medical institutions,” shared Chioma. “This provided a great opportunity to network with these students while comparing our experiences and sharing ideas that would contribute to our positions at our individual institutions. Plus, it was amazing to see the high representation of minority students! This reassured me that academic medicine’s future is bright and will continue to become increasingly diverse in the coming years.”

Abigail Johnson, Class of 2025, Long School of Medicine

RISE exceeded all my expectations! I figured they would have great programming with fascinating speakers, but the other attendees’ energy and brilliance surprised me. This group was enthusiastic, compassionate, driven, and not shockingly, amazing leaders,” Abigail added. “I thought I would only be learning from those officially on the program’s schedule. But what I learned from just interacting with my fellow classmates from across the nation was astonishing! From their different school governments to research projects in certain medical fields, I was continuously storing all the information I learned to apply here at UT Health San Antonio.”

Supporting the institution’s mission to educate the future generation of health care professionals

Both Chioma and Abigail earned travel awards — offered through the Office for Undergraduate Medical Education — to attend the conference in Washington, DC, and were grateful for the opportunity to represent the Long School of Medicine.

Travel awards allow medical students to earn scholarships to travel to local or national conferences to speak or present a poster, to represent the Long School of Medicine as an officer of a national student organization or commence an international elective to deliver healthcare worldwide.

Click here to learn more about the competitive travel awards available at UT Health San Antonio.

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