Student Advocacy Training Program


The MSMA Student Advocacy Training (STAT) program is designed to encourage medical students to get involved with organized medicine through advocacy, professional networking, and leadership training. Students who complete any TEN eligible activities during their medical school career are recognized as STAT Scholars at the Annual Session of the Mississippi State Medical Association House of Delegates in August.

To join the STAT program, contact Sheryl Ashley, Technology and Data Manager at [email protected] or (601) 853 - 6733, ext. 305 to receive your username. She will communicate directions on logging all STAT activities going forward if you haven’t already received the information prior. The deadline to be included in the Annual Session program each year is May 31st

The activities listed below are offered to give you a variety of ways to gain advocacy experience and get plugged in to MSMA. Plus, there will be other events throughout the year that will also be STAT eligible in addition to the ones listed below. Completion of this program is a great addition to any CV!

Importantly, if you RSVP for a STAT activity with multiple advanced attendance confirmations and cancel within 24 hours of the event without valid reason for absence, one of your completed STAT activities will be taken away. Respect and consideration needs to be given to sponsors, planners, other interested students and leaders in the coordination of each event.

STAT Activities

Visit the State Capitol during legislative session with MSMA

See how the legislative process works and meet your legislators. We’ll help! Throughout the legislative session, David Roberts, Chief of Staff and Director of Governmental Affairs, is at the Capitol to lobby on behalf of MSMA member physicians. Every year, legislation is introduced that affects the practice of medicine positively or negatively. It is only with the support and involvement of our physician members that MSMA is able to effectively advocate for the practice of medicine. Contact David Roberts at [email protected] to schedule a visit.

Shadow the Doctor of the Day with MSMA at the State Capitol

Meet the Doctor of the Day: Each day a licensed Mississippi physician volunteers his or her time to provide medical care to legislators and their staff. Be introduced on the House and Senate Floor. You will also get a chance to work in the Capitol Clinic with MSMA staff.  To sign up visit Contact Sheryl Ashley [email protected] for any questions. 

Attend a Mississippi Board of Medical Licensure meeting

The Board of Medical Licensure issues professional licenses and serves as the regulatory board for the practice of medicine in Mississippi. Every odd numbered month, the Board meets publicly to hold disciplinary hearings, discuss proposed regulatory changes and evaluate collaboration requests, among other topics. As an observer, you will be exposed to the regulatory side of practicing medicine, a highly important area. Contact David Roberts at [email protected] to find out about the next meeting.

Participate in Physician Membership Outreach Efforts.

Physician membership outreach efforts are a key part of our association. Participating in membership outreach efforts allows you to sharpen your interpersonal and communication skills, network with physicians, engage in learning the importance of advocacy and organized medicine, and affect the future of medicine in our state as your voice matters.  Contact [email protected] for more information.

Participate in MSMA calls to action through Voter Voice

MSMA often calls on members to write letters, send emails or make calls to their legislators expressing support or opposition to a bill. Your voice is highly important; participate in calls to action sent from MSMA on Legislative issues. Stay on the lookout for a MSMA email regarding calls to action!

Attend the MSMA Annual Session

Each year, MSMA members gather to elect new officers, consider proposed resolutions, and commend the recipients of various awards. Here you can be an actual voting delegate and participate in the democratic process that steers MSMA’s efforts. Attendance is free and if you’d like to attend even if you’re not a voting delegate, you will need to pre-register online. Contact Sheryl Ashley at [email protected] for additional information on registration.

Become an AMA member during our AMA recruitment events

MSMA works closely with the American Medical Association to recruit students as members and to encourage student attendance at AMA meetings. The AMA provides advocacy resources and support to state medical associations as well as many opportunities to become a physician advocate. Contact Sheryl Ashley at [email protected] to become an AMA member.

Volunteer at a MMPAC event

The Mississippi Medical Political Action Committee raises money to support Mississippi’s elected officials who are champions for the practice of medicine. Contact us about upcoming PAC events or how you can get involved with the PAC. Contact David Roberts, Chief of Staff and Director of Government Affairs at [email protected] for more information.

Volunteer at MSMA Headquarters.

Spend a half day or one day on-site at MSMA with either Marketing, Membership, Governmental Affairs, or even the Journal of MSMA. Your voice and service are highly important to our association, and we want you to experience how your leadership matters. Email Sheryl Ashley at [email protected] if you’d like to volunteer.  

Participate in a MSMA-lead community service event.
Participate in a community service event planned by MSMA staff, MSMA student Trustee, or student chapter Community Outreach Chair. If you are interested in planning and leading your own community service event in partnership with MSMA, please contact [email protected] 

COVID-19 Outreach

Medical students, we are in a unique situation during this time of a global pandemic. We know many of you have volunteered your time with outreach efforts. MSMA would like to honor you with TWO credits toward STAT Scholar. Please forward some type of documentation regarding your outreach efforts (volunteering on a student response team, hotline, delivering food to elderly, delivering PPE to clinics/hospitals, etc.) to Sheryl Ashley at [email protected]. You will still need to log your eligible activities on your own, including this one. However, submitting some form of documentation will provide us with confirmation of your outreach efforts to offer you the TWO credits.