Student Association for Health Management and Policy Brings Together Students for Enhanced Student Experience
The College for Public Health and Social Justice Graduate Student Association for Health Management and Policy (SAHMP) is a student-led organization that seeks to improve and impact student engagement and the student experience during students’ studies within CPHSJ.
The organization aims to optimize student experiences by hosting several social, professional development, and service events through the academic school year.
“SAHMP is vital graduate student organization because it serves as a voice for many MHA and HMP students who may not be able to speak up for themselves or be heard without an organization backing them up,” SAHMP President and Master of Health Administration second-year student Moustapha Mbaye said. “Most of us students come into this program because we want to give back to the community, we are drawn to the social justice aspect of the College, and SAHMP puts a huge focus on that aspect as well.”
Students seeking to engage in service events are able to do so in SAHMP.
Mbaye shared that some service events include blood drives, local-park restoration, and volunteering with local-emergency departments. Additionally, there is collaboration with the Doctoral Student Association for future co-hosted service events.
In previous years, SAHMP has hosted social events such as student mixers, visits to Eckert’s Farms, group ice skating around St. Louis, and most recently in the Spring of 2022 SAHMP collaborated with the graduate Student Association for Public Health (SAPH) and co-hosted a ‘Spring Soirée.’ This event consisted of nearly 200 Master and Doctoral students across studies of Public Health, Health Management, Social Work, and more.
The event served as a great opportunity to meet, socialize, and network with graduate students across the whole College. The event took place at the Clayton Plaza Hotel, and included a formal dinner, cocktails, and a live DJ. Mbaye says that planning for another Soirée this year is already in the planning.
Professional development events are also an essential part of this organization. Annual events include alumni panels, case competitions, resume reviews, mock interviews, and networking nights.
“Alumni panels and alumni engagement events are very impactful for the organization's members because it allows students to hear first hand from leaders in the industry how they are solving the problems we as students are currently trying to solve in the classroom settings,” Mbaye said.
Additionally, Mbaye shared that SAHMP is currently working to set up tours of hospitals so that students may have perspectives of how healthcare facilities are organized and operated.
As a final note, Mbaye encourages students to, “consider what impact you want to make, and then choose a career that helps you make that impact.”
“This will guide you into happiness in terms of work-life balance, and going into work you will be happy about the work that you are doing,” he said. “What we are doing now is building our careers, it is what we will be doing for the next 35 years until we pivot, or retire. This is why it is important to structure our work around what we really want out of our life.”
College for Public Health and Social Justice
The Saint Louis University College for Public Health and Social Justice is the only academic unit of its kind, studying social, environmental and physical influences that together determine the health and well-being of people and communities. It also is the only accredited school or college of public health among nearly 250 Catholic institutions of higher education in the United States. Guided by a mission of social justice and focus on finding innovative and collaborative solutions for complex health problems, the college offers nationally recognized programs in public health and health administration.