AMSA Convention 2016 Logo

AMSA Foundation Board


  • James Slayton, MD, MBA


  • Britani Kessler, DO, AMSA National President
  • Joshua Weinstock, AMSA Secretary
  • Janell Johnson, AMSA International Trustee
  • Aliye Runyan, MD, AMSA Graduate Trustee
  • Deborah Vozzella Hall, AMSA President-Elect
  • Jay Bhatt, MD, AMSA Past President
  • Joshua Caulfield, AMSA Executive Director

History of the Organization

The American Medical Student Association (AMSA) Foundation is a 501(c)(3) public educational foundation that has an inter-locking directorate with the American Medical Student Association. The Foundation was established by AMSA in 1964 as a means to address issues in medical education and to provide low cost small emergency loans to medical students in need. In 1974, the Board of Trustees of the Association and the Board of Directors of the Foundation decided to reactivate the AMSA Foundation and broaden its role. As a result, all of the existing medical education and health manpower/community health projects supported by outside funders were transferred from the Association to the AMSA Foundation. Hence, the Foundation took on the role of the major programming arm of AMSA.

During its forty-five year history, the AMSA Foundation has developed a national reputation for designing and conducting quality and innovative programming to address emerging and important health care and related training issues. It has managed over $50,000,000 of grant and contract funds during this period. Much of the organization’s early work was performed under extensive contracts with US Public Health Service. From 1971 through 1980, the AMSA Foundation was the primary recruiter of physicians for the National Health Service Corps, Bureau of Medical Services and the Indian Health Service.

The AMSA Foundation has also worked extensively with private foundations and corporations on programs designed to augment physician development and innovations in medical education. The organization was one of the original innovators of interdisciplinary health team training for medical and allied health students, a program sponsored over a five-year period by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

During the mid seventies, the AMSA Foundation established the Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT) at the University of Florida, and the Center for Physician Development in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Through these centers, the organization conducted research in physician development and on the variables affecting career dispositions and outcomes of physicians in training. In 1981, the Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT) became an independent organization. CAPT has continued its work on the largest and longest longitudinal study on physician career outcomes, which was originally supported by the AMSA Foundation.

Today, following the interest of students and establishing new trends in medical education, the AMSA Foundation continues its work on health professional development through new programs on medical education on behalf of the US Department of Health and Human Services and other funders. The organization continually evaluates its goals and program priorities and tracks program participants.

Foundation History

Laurel Cappa

AMSA President, Laurel Cappa, testifies before the Senate health subcommittee in support of direct student aid.

AMSA members rally for health care reform.