2021 White Coat Ceremony
October 15, 2021
Dean Learman: It is my pleasure to welcome you to the White Coat Ceremony of the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine for the class of 2025.
Aubrey Knight: As you have your freshly ironed pristine white coats placed on your backs, may this not only serve to remind you of this next step in your journey to becoming an M.D., but also as a reminder of our responsibility to the health of our patients.
Alexander Inn, class of 2025 president: We come together as one at Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine from our individual paths of life. Bringing our own experiences, values, and cultures to form a diverse community. We strive to not only recognize our differences and those in the communities we serve, but also understand that we are all human. Humans with imperfections, struggles, and emotions. Therefore we champion diversity, equity, and inclusion, and aim to treat all patients in their entirety. We vow to a life of learning from both our patients and peers, as we lead with integrity to improve the way we treat others and build trusting relationships. We promise to wear our white coats with humility. We admit we are not perfect, and have so much to learn from the world around us. Therefore we dedicate our lives to achieving excellence in our classrooms, clerkships, and practices. We always put our patients first, listening to their stories responding to their concerns and simply being present in their time of need. Together as a family we will celebrate each other's successes, while supporting each other in times of hardship. We will be kind to one another with unconditional love. We will remind each other of how hard we have worked to get this far and of the shared vision we hold for improving the health and well-being of others we are the class of 2025.
Dean Learman: On behalf of all of the physicians here today, it is with great pride and abundant expectations that I formally welcome the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine's class of 2025 to our profession.
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