Meet the FMIG Network National Coordinator
The FMIG Network National Coordinator supports and facilitates the work of the five Regional Coordinators to develop and strengthen FMIGs on medical school campuses across the country. He or she is also a member of the AAFP Commission on Education, as well as its subcommittee on National Conference Planning. The National Coordinator is elected at the AAFP National Conference of Family Medicine Residents and Medical Students, and serves a one-year term.
Read how National Coordinator Chase Mussard plans to use his passion for family medicine to strengthen the FMIG Network and inspire students to choose family medicine.
2019-2020 National Coordinator
School: East Tennessee State University Quillen College of Medicine
What do you most look forward to in your future career as a family physician?
The list of things I look forward to as a future family physician is infinitely long, but I am most looking forward to two things: practicing with the widest scope possible and becoming a teacher in family medicine. Family medicine is amazing as it addresses each and every concern our patients have, and we know that so much more is at play than illness or disease. Health care is so much more than what occurs in the walls of a clinic or wards of a hospital. I have had some great mentors along the way and desire to impact those that will follow me in even greater ways. My role as National Coordinator is the best in that I get to basically start doing this now by encouraging and supporting fellow students!
Why do you think the FMIG Network is important?
The FMIG Network is, in my opinion, the most important part of the AAFP! Evidence continues to show that the earlier someone is exposed to family medicine, the more likely they are to choose a career in family medicine, and I am proud to be a part of that statistic! I was raised going to a family doctor, and my first experience as a pre-med student was with a family doctor, too. The FMIG Network is important in that we get the exciting job of being part of the front-line efforts to increase medical student choice for family medicine, and show them all that family medicine has to offer.
"The FMIG Network is, in my opinion, the most important part of the AAFP! Evidence continues to show that the earlier someone is exposed to family medicine, the more likely they are to choose a career in family medicine, and I am proud to be a part of that statistic!"
— Chase Mussard
What are some of the most inspiring projects you’ve seen FMIGs taking on recently?
We always set some pretty hefty goals with the FMIG Network because we know we have some equally fantastic FMIGs that can reach them. Lately, we have been really pushing efforts that are centered around increasing exposure and mentorship for future family physicians. FMIGs across the nation have implemented some superb programs that are pairing medical and pre-medical students with family physicians and it is making a huge difference.
What are you most proud of from your time serving as a Regional Coordinator?
As a Regional Coordinator, I was really proud of the chapters in my region (Mid-Atlantic) for how well they were mentoring students and for being so involved in their colleges. My region had three Program of Excellence Award winners. Recognizing these winners at the National Conference was an awesome moment to experience as a Regional Coordinator. I also loved getting to meet students from new FMIG chapters and sharing in their excitement and vision as they built a brand new and vibrant FMIG!
What do you hope to accomplish in the upcoming year as National Coordinator?
This next year, I really want to build off the momentum from last year. We had an awesome team with an awesome leader (shout out to Erin Clark!) who set ambitious goals, and we were able to really go after them. I know we can continue to chase after them this next year with a unified effort! I would love to see us also become more active on social media and really challenge our FMIGs in specific ways to help us accomplish our goals with mentorship and exposure!
How has being involved with FMIGs changed you the most?
I have been involved with FMIGs since my first year of medical school, and it changed the trajectory of my career. Being involved with FMIGs has helped connect me to some awesome folks within my school, my community, and across the entire nation. The confidence I have as a future family doc comes in large part from knowing the family medicine community is thriving and vibrant nationally, and this is no more evident than when getting to know our FMIGs and their leaders. I know my future is bright because of the FMIG Network!