Australian Medical Students’ Association
AMSA is the Australian Medical Students’ Association, and it acts as the peak representative body for each and every one of you, just as the AMA does for doctors in Australia. From advocating for your interests at a national level, directly to the Federal Government, to organising mind-blowing events with an incredible sense of community, the range of opportunities, activities and support that AMSA provides is extraordinary.
Understanding AMSA in three easy steps:
1. AMSA connects.
For those who’ve heard whisperings of AMSA already, it can sometimes have a reputation as nothing but a massive party. While that’s definitely NOT the case, the rumours aren’t without some truth. AMSA hosts some massive events throughout the year, each with its own flavour, but all designed to bring medical students together from across the country, to be challenged, to learn, and to make lasting friendships.
Some highlights include:
National Leadership Development Seminar (NLDS)
NLDS is first on the calendar, and a huge opportunity to learn practical skills in leadership at a student level and far beyond. Hosted over a weekend in Canberra, NLDS applications open early in the year!
Global Health Conference (GHC)
GHC brings together over 600 students to witness inspiring talks on global health from speakers like Julian Assange, Brian Owler (former AMA president), and renowned MSF doctors. With past social nights held in incredible locations like Maitland Jail, you’ll definitely want to experience GHC at some point in your degree.
Something that almost needs no introduction, Convention is AMSA’s flagship event for 1500 delegates from across the country (and some Kiwis). Unforgettable social nights and life-changing speakers make up one of the most memorable weeks of your life, and it cannot be recommend highly enough.
2. AMSA informs.
If you’re not able to make it to an event, never fear, as AMSA runs a huge range of projects accessible to all. AMSA Global Health and AMSA Rural Health are two major committees within the organisation that do amazing work throughout the year, and will be there to support you in any interest you might have. Campaigns such as Vampire Cup (a blood-drive-turned-inter-uni-competition), Code Green (a week of climate change awareness) and Red Party (in support of HIV/AIDS work) make sure the year is never dull. AMSA Mental Health is a favourite of many, and something that, as medical students, hits close to home.
If that wasn’t enough, publications such as Vector (Global Health), Panacea (AMSA), Intern and Residents’ Guide, Keeping Your Grass Greener (Mental Health) are amazing resources and open to your contributions.
3. AMSA represents.
Policy and politics. Love it or hate it, it’s a large part of what goes on behind the scenes in AMSA. With a seat at the table at the State and Federal levels, AMSA stands up for your interests. Worried about internship places? Disgusted by the sexist culture in medicine? Support open-access publishing? Against uni fee deregulation? All this and more is informed by AMSA’s policy, debated and ratified at three Councils throughout the year. Prior to each, a think tank is held at uni, where anyone is welcome to attend and make their thoughts heard – and all are welcomed to attend council and even write policy.