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All about the Asian Pacific American Medical Student Association at IU School of Medicine

Founded in 2019 by medical students Seungyup Sun, Class of 2022, and Lily Suh, Class of 2023, the Indiana University School of Medicine chapter of the Asian Pacific American Medical Student Association (APAMSA) recently held elections for the 2021-2022 academic year. 

Co-Presidents

Manda Yihui Wang,
Class of 2023

Lily Suh, Class of 2023

Vice President

Hayley Chan, Class of 2023

Learn more about APAMSA and their work from newly elected co-president, Manda Yihui Wang, Class of 2023.

What are the benefits of being a member of this organization?

As a chapter of the national APAMSA organization, we are committed to addressing the unique health challenges of Asian and Pacific Islander communities in Indiana and beyond. This organization serves as a forum for medical student leaders to engage in Asian and Pacific Islander-specific health issues and to develop initiatives and projects addressing those issues. Additionally, it strives to further educate health care professionals in how to deliver culturally sensitive care for APA patients. Finally, IU School of Medicine APAMSA provides an important venue for medical students to meet, exchange experiences and develop both personally and professionally through leadership, mentorship and service.

What have you learned from being involved with APAMSA?

Being a part of APAMSA these past two years has given me the opportunity to reflect on my own experience as an Asian American and understand the specific needs that different groups within the Asian and Pacific Islander community have. I hope that with these experiences, I will be able to provide better care to marginalized communities in the future.

What motivated you to participate and lead?

With all the racism and injustice that has been happening in our country as of late, it is especially important to be a part of an organization like APAMSA. I hope that being a part of APAMSA and putting together educational events will give us the voice we need to illuminate critical issues that the Asian-American and Pacific Islander community faces to enact societal change.

What types of events do you host?

Our latest event was on May 7, “Asian Americans: the overrepresented minority? Dispelling the ‘model minority’ myth.” During this webinar, Corinna Yu, MD, assistant professor of clinical anesthesia, discussed systemic issues which have led to Asian Americans becoming overrepresented in medicine, yet underrepresented in leadership. It was followed by a panelist session featuring two other prominent Asian American physician leaders from the Midwest who shared their perspectives on these issues.

On March 29, we celebrated Holi, India's festival of colors by making tie-dye face masks.

In October of 2020, we hosted an event called, “Cultural barriers to mental health.” As physicians, we will run into patients from diverse cultural backgrounds who struggle with mental health challenges. In this speaker series, we explored this topic with various providers who have experience treating patients with cultural barriers to accessing mental health care.

What would you like the rest of the school community to know about APAMSA?

You don't have to identify as Asian American or Pacific Islander to come to our events. We are very welcoming of everyone! All we ask is that you come interested and ready to learn about different communities and cultures.

How does someone join the organization?

Joining our organization is easy! Membership is open to all students enrolled at IU School of Medicine. You can join our list-serv by emailing apamsa@iupui.edu. If you provide us with your phone number, we can also add you to our APAMSA members GroupMe.

The views expressed in this content represent the perspective and opinions of the author and may or may not represent the position of Indiana University School of Medicine.
Author

Jordan Lapsley

Jordan Lapsley is a Communications Assistant for Indiana University School of Medicine’s Faculty Affairs, Professional Development, and Diversity.