Leadership development

Education beyond the traditional curriculum

  • Assessment. The AMSA self-awareness assessment is rooted in scientific research on personality psychology, and customized to the medical student population. Respondents receive a personalized report allowing them to understand their personality, strengths, and challenges in an objective way.  
  • Institutional membership. AMSA National, the foundational organization, works with schools across the country to enhance medical education and the lives of medical students.  Numerous medical schools partner with AMSA to provide student body-wide membership.  These partnerships allow med students everywhere to take advantage of AMSA membership, and are of particular importance for those students who want to be members but face personal financial hardships.  
  • Fellow position. Every year, a new physician-in-training augments their formal medical education by delving deeply into critical issues affecting access to affordable, quality health care, global health equity, diversity in the health care workforce, and medical professionalism. This is done at the AMSA office, where the fellow works closely with staff and national leaders. As the result of a partnership with Kaiser Permanente, the Education & Advocacy Fellow also participates in a 3-4 week community-focused rotation in Northern California.  
  • Sim Challenge. Every year,  teams from medical schools throughout the country compete in a series of simulated clinical scenarios requiring medical knowledge, clinical skills, teamwork, and communication. After being presented with a clinical case, each team has ~15 minutes to evaluate, discuss, and present their findings. A panel of judges determine the winner for each round.


  • Scorecard. Relationships between pharma and medical schools have led to an erosion of trust that is the foundation of the doctor-patient relationship. Medical schools and academic medical centers have played a powerful leadership role in setting new standards for the profession. Since 2007, the American Medical Student Association (AMSA) has released the Scorecard, grading medical schools on the presence or absence of a policy regulating the interactions between their students and faculty and the pharmaceutical and device industries. The rigorous and transparent methodology used to assess medical school policies has been made possible through the cooperation of numerous entities including AMSA national staff, paid interns, and medical student volunteers.
  • Advocacy Day. AMSA continues the tradition of bringing medical students and legislators together every year to discuss critical issues in health policy. Working toward a more equitable, safe, and healthy future is every medical student’s responsibility, and Advocacy Day participants use their influence as a physician-in-training and constituent to make real change while honing lifelong advocacy skills.