The 26th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Banquet hosted by the Duke University Chapter of the Student National Medical Association (SNMA) serves to celebrate the life and enduring legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. each year as the Duke University School of Medicine community gathers to commemorate and reflect on his transformative impact in defining the role of service, leadership, and community in social justice.

Thanks to previous sponsors, SNMA was able to increase the Delano Meriwether Scholarship award for exemplary high school students by over 50% from previous years – these students compete for top spots during our Health Professions Recruitment and Exposure Program (HPREP); organize and execute over 40 events aimed at addressing the needs of underserved communities and supporting underrepresented medical students such as partnering with various community organizations to help provide backpacks and school supplies to over 100 children in need this school year.

In addition to serving as SNMA’s largest fundraiser, this banquet provides our institution with an opportunity to commemorate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy. Organizational goals for this year including maintaining and strengthening our community service and advocacy initiatives and increasing our exposure within the Duke University Health System.

Keynote Speaker: 

Dr. L.D. Britt, MD, MPH, D.Sc (Hon), FACS, FCCM, FRCSEng (Hon), FRCSEd (Hon), FWACS (Hon), FRCSI (Hon), FCS(SA) (Hon), Henry Ford Professor and Edward J. Brickhouse Chairman of the Department of Surgery at Eastern Virginia

“The Ongoing Challenges of Healthcare Disparities in America”

About Duke University School of Medicine Student National Medical Association (SNMA)

The Student National Medical Association is an entirely student-run organization. Our mission is to support current and future underrepresented minority medical students, address the needs of underserved communities, and increase the number of clinically excellent, culturally competent, and socially conscious physicians. Duke SNMA is a chapter within the larger organization of SNMA that engages a large number of minority medical students at Duke and individuals within the community of Durham, NC.

Health Professions Recruitment and Exposure Program (HPREP)

The aim of this program is to provide additional foundation and experience for those students interested in pursuing a career in the health professions. Our program features medical students and members of the Student National Medical Association (SNMA), as well as minority professional faculty who give lectures and interact with participants, providing them with influential role models and opportunities rarely experienced by underrepresented high school students. The counseling and interaction with successful medical students helps participants avoid academic pitfalls suffered by many of their peers in their first year of college.  During the course of the program, a wide range of topics from cardiovascular disease to stereotypes and health care redesign are taught. Participants are provided with necessary guidance and opportunities to strengthen their oral presentation, teamwork, and interview skills. Eventually, all students receive a final grade based on their formal presentation skills, class participation, and interview skills and the top 3 candidates are awarded scholarship funds.

Banquet Co-chairs:

Austin Maduka

Nathaniel Neptune