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White Coat Ceremony

doodle by Steven White of masked student being donned with a white coat by a masked faculty member

When

October 14, 2022
5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Where

Jefferson Center
541 Luck Ave, Roanoke VA  24016

White Coat Ceremony

The purpose of the ceremony is to clarify for students, prior to their entrance into the medical community, that a physician’s responsibility is to both take care of patients and also to care for patients. In other words, doctors should care as well as cure. The Arnold P. Gold Foundation designed the White Coat Ceremony to welcome entering medical students and help them to establish a psychological contract for the practice of medicine. The event emphasizes the importance of compassionate care for the patient as well as scientific proficiency and includes several elements:

  • Welcome to the profession of medicine by the dean and faculty
  • Recitation or discussion of an oath (such as the Hippocratic Oath or a student-written oath), which represents the public acknowledgment by the students of the responsibilities of the profession and their willingness to assume such obligations in the presence of family, friends, and faculty
  • Cloaking of students in their first white coats
  • An address by an eminent physician role model