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Our student FMIG meets for lunch on the first Wednesday of each month and is usually sponsored by community hospitals, local family physicians, and others who are interested in encouraging students to pursue a career in family medicine.
FMIG uses money generated by fundraising efforts to send students to various conferences and to support philanthropic efforts. By providing lunch for FMIG meetings, these kind donations make it possible for students to interact with the representatives from the various sponsors, thus exposing them to opportunities in family medicine that are different from those found in an academic institution.
Our interest group has repeatedly won the Program of Excellence Award from the AAFP and has been involved in a plethora of community service activities, including the Jackson Free Clinic and the Ronald McDonald House.
On the second Wednesday of each month, FMIG officers meet to conduct the business of the chapter. Topics often include potential speakers and sponsors for monthly lunch meetings, service project ideas, clinical skills workshops and planning for the annual recruitment fair and banquet.
Additional support for our meetings also comes from the Mississippi Academy of Family Physicians. In addition to being one of our lunch meeting sponsors, the Academy also sponsors a booth at the annual residency fair. A huge asset to our recruiting efforts, the MAFP pays the AAFP membership dues for each student who also joins FMIG. Officers also participate in the annual MAFP meeting in Destin, Fla.
Medical student Jesse Morrison presents Tar Wars to group at Cathedral School in Natchez
UMMC FMIG was recently awarded first place by the American Academy of Family Physicians as part of the 2016 Tar Wars Challenge for FMIGs. The Academy recognizes FMIGs as part of the Challenge for their outstanding community service efforts to educate children about the harmful effects of tobacco use. Other FMIGs who received awards are the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, Springfield (second place) and the University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle (third place).
The FMIG at the University of Mississippi School of Medicine encourages the promotion of the Tar Wars program to its students each academic year. In fact, all medical students at the school will participate in presenting Tar Wars at least once during their medical school career.
Tar Wars presentations by the school's medical students reached more than 3,400 fourth- and fifth-grade students during the past school year , and the program has already been presented to more than 2,000 students this year.
Andrew Brown, a fourth-year medical student and a Tar Wars presenter, told AAFP News he really enjoyed the children's enthusiasm and participation in the anti-tobacco campaign.
"They seemed to really understand how harmful these habits are, and I could feel the impact that Tar Wars is making," he said. "We are grateful for the opportunity to present this material. "Through the Tar Wars program, (our school) is able to reach thousands of Mississippi children and positively influence both their individual futures and the future of our state."
Dr. Shannon Pittman, left, associate professor and residency director of family medicine, talks with second-year medical student Kendra Robinson-Taylor about UMMC's Family Medicine Program, and family medicine residents Dr. Anna Marie Hailey-Sharp and Dr. William Davis speak to medical students about residency program options during the 2014 Family Medicine Interest Group Residency Fair Sept. 24 in the Norman C. Nelson Student Union.
Medical students and residents also visited with different health care organizations to preview potential employment opportunities.
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