AMSA Reference Committee


Three committees ensure the smooth functioning of the HOD and national officer elections: the Reference, Nominations and Credentials Committees. These committees are an excellent way for AMSA members to get involved nationally. AMSA depends on committed members to serve on these committees and to help the HOD function smoothly.

Any active AMSA member may apply to serve on the Reference Committee. Interested members must submit an online application,a brief paragraph of intent (no more than 100 words), as well as a brief resume/curriculum vitae (CV) by the deadline date listed above. Please tailor your resume/curriculum vitae to highlight AMSA or other extracurricular activities in which you have participated.

Committee members will be selected by the Vice President for Internal Affairs and the National Secretary. Because of funding constraints, the national office is unable to assist committee members with travel to Convention; however, local chapters and school administrations can usually assist their delegates and committee members. All committee members will have their AMSA Convention registration fees waived in return for their service.


Members who want to gain in-depth exposure to AMSA's policy-making process can volunteer to serve on a Reference Committee (“RefCom”). Each Reference Committee is responsible for collecting the testimony of AMSA's membership on HOD resolutions and making a formal recommendation to the HOD to accept or reject each resolution. This process entails hard work but offers a unique opportunity to be involved in AMSA policy-making. Members of past Reference Committees have had the chance to examine a number of important issues of interest to medical students, including changes to medical education, international health concerns and pharmaceutical marketing to physicians.

Each Reference Committee is composed of a chairperson and at least one other member. There are usually several Committees, each of which focuses on a different type of resolution. In February, Committee members will receive a resolutions packet and are asked to read these resolutions before arriving at Convention. Committee members must participate in the training on Friday morning (time TBA) during National Convention.

During the Convention, each Committee holds an open and closed session to hear the testimony of the membership regarding the resolutions and to write a formal report with recommendations to the HOD. These recommendations are the most important part of the job as the Committees must combine the testimony of members with current AMSA policy and synthesize an appropriate recommendation to present to the HOD. This job is accomplished with the help of the Vice President for Internal Affairs and Secretary, as well as the Second Vice Chair of the HOD. The Reference Committee's final responsibility is to attend the HOD session when their assigned resolutions are being considered in order to present their reports and address any questions from the delegates. Reference Committee members may not participate in the debate for any resolution considered by their respective Reference Committee.

Members applying to serve on a Reference Committee may also apply to serve on the Credentials and Nominations committees.