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Year of Transformation

Welcome to the first blog of ACMA Cardiff's new website! To start off our content, I wanted to provide a short insight into our new journey of change. This is just the beginning and it is my greatest hope that this year we can set a new platform for the future, so that we can continue to thrive year on year.

As an official society, ACMA has only been running for two years. I am so grateful for the foundations that have been put into place by the previous committees and founders. It has allowed me to sit back and visualise where we need to go next. What jumped out to me was the need for a greater presence.

We have always had a voice but without the platforms to use it, we lose the power and this will not be the case moving forward. Little did I know that our initial planning and preparation stages would come about in the Black Lives Matter movement, arising from the tragic death of George Floyd. I have to admit I immediately felt a lot of pressure entering a role leading a black society during this time, but actually I found so much strength and willpower not only from within myself but from the committee of 2020/21. They have done an endless amount of hard work to ensure everything we do is at the highest standard that we can be - and without this grind, change would not arise otherwise.

It was very apparent that the new platform I had envisioned would come through the power of social media - making a Twitter account and LinkedIn page has already given us more status and has allowed us to reach further than we could ever imagine. This was proven to us when we released our advisory document across all our platforms - the response was overwhelming of support. I wanted us to be at the forefront of the changes needed to address race & diversity effectively and it has been so encouraging to see the genuine efforts of the medical school striving to improve always and working with us, listening to our voice.

Another reflection that I felt strongly about was having a greater presence in the community in Wales. As students, it is so easy to get caught up in an university bubble and be unaware of the issues that people face around us. I am so grateful that we have already been able to get involved through participating in forums and networking. This has allowed us to begin to set up specific and unique services serving to inspire and equip aspiring African Caribbean students living in Wales, which I am incredibly excited about. This also has given us new opportunities to be involved in speaking out and I am writing this today following on from our live Q&A webinar earlier that we hosted in collaboration with Cardiff University itself.

In a year's time, I cannot wait to write an end of term blog to share what else we will achieve this upcoming year. Change can present with areas of unpredictability, particularly during what I pray is the exit of a pandemic, but we will take it in our stride and walk one step at a time on our journey of transformation.

I hope you choose to follow us in this new direction and stay connected with us!

- Ellen Nelson-Rowe, President

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