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Advocacy

Students Share Unique Perspectives at COM Day on Capitol Hill

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Harika with UP-KYCOM team

Get a fresh perspective on student advocacy from our latest Osteopathic Health Policy Intern (OHPI) Harika Kantamneni, OMS-IV, University of Pikeville–Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine (UP-KYCOM).

In her latest OHPI Blog post, Harika shares her experience at AACOM’s recent COM Day on Capitol Hill, the only advocacy day that focuses exclusively on issues pertaining to osteopathic medical schools and students, held on March 8. Harika discusses strategies for effectively communicating with policymakers, explaining:

One thing to focus on during congressional meetings is letting students share their personal stories. Most congressional offices are familiar with the issues that are important to osteopathic medical students, thanks to AACOM’s Government Relations team. And even if policymakers and their staff are not familiar with the issues, it’s easy for them to acquire information.

Students’ stories were a unique contribution. Personal experiences are a direct testimony about the effects of the policies being contemplated and/or enacted on Capitol Hill. Congressional staff holds personal student stories in high regard and genuinely want to hear from you.

“Overall, the day was a huge success,” Harika says. “And while COM Day might be over for this year, that does not mean my advocacy efforts stop. I will continue to advocate for osteopathic medical students throughout my career, and I hope you’ll do the same.”

Read more about the success of COM Day on Capitol Hill and the impact DO students are making to protect the future physician workforce on the OHPI Blog.