More About Chapters
So, you’re thinking about running a BRI chapter at your university or medical school. We’re glad you found us!
We are here to support you in the important work of educating others about preserving the precious patient-doctor relationship—fundamental to a healthcare system that provides optimum results for both patients and doctors.
What does it take to be a BRI student leader?
To be a successful BRI leader it’s important to be aligned with BRI’s Purpose, Vision and Mission. [link] We believe the patient-doctor relationship is the most important element in managing health. Keeping this relationship safe from burdensome and overreaching regulation is paramount for the greatest benefit to doctors and patients.
The patient-doctor relationship thrives optimally in a free enterprise system, where doctors and healthcare businesses are at liberty to innovate, create and compete. A truly free system fosters the highest quality healthcare options for the most people at the lowest possible costs.
If you believe in these basics enough to do the work of defending and protecting them, you have what it takes to be a Benjamin Rush Institute student leader. Beyond that, a successful leader is self-motivated, communicates well and delegates tasks to fellow BRI student volunteers. These are valuable skills that will also serve you throughout your professional career.
What Do BRI Student Leaders Do?
BRI student leaders are ambassadors, advocates and educators. With support from BRI’s national office, students organize a variety of events that promote principles of liberty and free markets, which will ultimately preserve the medical profession’s integrity and improve our great American healthcare system.
Student leaders work with their chapter members to determine the events they’ll host throughout the academic year. Debates, lunch lectures, social events, journal clubs and movie screenings are just a few examples of events BRI Student leaders typically produce. (See “Calendar” for ideas and Post-Event Summaries.)
Details on how to hold events are detailed in the Student Leader Handbook. [link] It is basically a matter of finding speakers or debaters, a date and time that works, and following through with simple logistics like promoting the event, securing the campus venue, and ordering food. The type of event you hold will determine the amount of effort and logistics required.
Whatever events you will hold, know that the BRI national office will support you 100%.
How Does BRI Support Its Student Leaders?
Being part of BRI is a great way to get trained in leadership, communication, event production and expressing ideas. Not only does BRI stay in close contact with students to help them produce events, we introduce and expose students to supportive physicians, healthcare policy experts and other members of the medical profession and healthcare community.
The education medical students receive from BRI about free market healthcare economics, direct primary care and other innovations in the healthcare sector are invaluable to understanding how developments in these areas will directly affect their own future careers.
BRI also provides a yearly training session at its annual Leadership Conference that is held in cities like Philadelphia, Denver, Washington DC and Saint Louis. We also give the most deserving leaders access to scholarships to attend other free market oriented conferences, like the Free Market Medicine Association (FMMA) conference in Oklahoma every summer.
What Does BRI Expect of Its Student Leaders?
The time and resources that BRI invests in student leaders is valuable and well spent. Students become well grounded in many facets of the healthcare policy challenges we face today; hence, they are the perfect ambassadors for commonsense, workable and sustainable healthcare reform.
Some universities require clubs to produce a minimum number of events per semester. While BRI doesn’t have that stipulation, one event per month—or two to four per semester—are worthy goals, and we will enthusiastically support more! Not every chapter holds a 2-on-2 debate, although this format draws the largest audiences and garners the most attention and reviews. Some of our most successful chapters hold monthly Journal Clubs with many hundreds of students in attendance over the course of the academic year.
Writing policy papers, pamphlets and blog posts not only looks great on your med school resumé, it is great for BRI as well! BRI students have access to BRI’s website and blog platforms to showcase insights and research, medical innovations and personal experiences.
BRI students have created BRI Facebook pages that we encourage you to participate in. There are also opportunities to author email newsletters and offer suggestions on any area where we can improve.
Always, we require that BRI student representatives conduct themselves professionally and courteously with everyone, whether fellow students, speakers, faculty or those with opposing views.
What Have BRI Chapters and Leaders Achieved?
As a BRI student leader, you will be in good company. We are proud of the great results our chapters and student leaders have achieved.
BRI chapters hold scores of events every year, ranging in attendance from 12 to 500. Thousands of medical students have thus been exposed to free market healthcare policy solutions. Every year at the Student Leadership Conferences, the host chapter produces a 2-on-2 panel discussion or debate as part of the conference.
BRI is instrumental in helping individuals obtain highly coveted internships. Danny McCorry, BRI-Georgetown chapter founder and past president was instrumental in getting legislation passed in Massachusetts, based on a white paper he wrote while an intern at The Heritage Foundation. Also while interning at Heritage, John Grimsley (BRI-Georgetown), wrote an impactful white paper that helped propel the “price transparency movement” to the forefront of today’s healthcare discussion. Kathryn Nix, founder and past president of BRI-Medical College of Wisconsin, was another active intern at Heritage, having published several white papers, participated in podcasts, and appeared on local TV with analysis about the detriments of the ACA. Jared Rhoads, BRI-Geisel School of Medicine/Dartmouth founder and past president had already created healthpolicy.tv, a compendium of the most important healthcare discussions when he joined BRI. John Flo, another BRI-assisted Heritage intern, took on creating the BRI podcast, gaining invaluable experience and fulfilling a long-standing BRI need.