Students in the Tulane University School of Medicine's class of 2017 received their first doctor’s white coats in a tradition-filled ceremony at McAlister Auditorium on Sunday (August 4).
Trevor Cabrera, left, and Cameron Callaghan enjoy their new stethoscopes at the annual white coat ceremony. Celebration would be replaced quickly with a focus on study and work, as medical school classes began on Monday (Aug. 5). (Photo by Guillermo Cabrera-Rojo)
“White coat day is when we welcome our new medical students to the medical profession,” said Dr. Marc Kahn, senior associate dean of admissions and student affairs. “They learn what it’s like to be part of a profession, and they get a symbol of our trade, a white coat.”
One hundred ninety-seven new students, plus 15 HEAL-X students
admitted in January 2013, crossed the stage to receive their coats. Each also received pins from the Arnold P. Gold Foundation for Humanism in Medicine and a Tulane University coat badge. All the students received their first stethoscopes, a gift from the Tulane Medical Alumni Association.
“This is one of the best occasions of the School of Medicine every year,” said Dr. Lee Hamm, senior vice president and dean, addressing the new students who filled the auditorium together with their families and friends. “You are entering a profession with a long history. Becoming a doctor is not just a privilege, it is not just a honor, it’s a great responsibility.”
The students come from 89 schools and colleges, with 24 continuing from Tulane. Four are from Louisiana State University. Eight students each are from University of California–Berkeley, Cornell and Notre Dame; five each attended University of California–San Diego, the University of Virginia and Washington University; and four each hail from Georgetown, Stanford, the University of Florida and Vanderbilt. Thirty-six states and one other country — Canada — are represented.
The students have initial plans to specialize in such areas as pediatrics, family medicine, surgery, orthopedics, emergency medicine and neurology.