Third-year medical student Jason Thuener is already making his mark on medicine.
Although he’s still one year away from earning his M.D., he has received national recognition from the American Medical Association (AMA) Foundation for his contributions to medicine through advocacy, community service, and education. The AMA Foundation recently awarded him its 2011 Leadership Award, making him one of only 24 medical students in the nation to receive this honor.
“As our nation continues to struggle with issues of access, disease prevention, and disparities in care, encouraging the next generation of leaders is critical,” said Barney R. Maynard, M.D., AMA Foundation president. “We need individuals like these award recipients who are taking the initiative to tackle health care’s most difficult challenges.”
Committed to leadership and service, Thuener traveled to Jamaica on a medical mission and served as the administrative director of Student-to- Student, the community education program run by medical students. He also volunteers with the Special Olympics and the medical school’s Weekend Intervention Program.
“The award ceremony was very moving,” said Thuener, who enjoyed learning from other award winners at the AMA conference in Washington, D.C. “They recognized a number of amazing physicians who have done national and international service work. Many of them were surgeons who helped in Haiti or with the homeless and underserved. I was on my surgery rotation at the time, and this was a push in that direction because I saw that I could do that too. For me, it was inspiring.” VS