124 Incoming Stony Brook Med Students Start Journey Into Medicine and Get “White Coat” at Traditional Ceremony
Class of 2015 is a Diverse Group from 64 Undergraduate Colleges and Universities
STONY BROOK, N.Y.
, August 23, 2011 – Stony Brook University School of Medicine welcomed the 124 men and women who make up the Class of 2015 at the School’s annual “White Coat Ceremony.” The Class, which matches Stony Brook’s largest incoming class, is a diverse group from 64 different undergraduate colleges and universities in New York and 20 other states and provinces in North America. The ceremony was held at the Stony Brook University Student Activities Center on August 21.
Tradition at many established medical schools around the nation, white coat ceremonies are an initiation rite and are symbolic to Medicine as a profession that combines professionalism with scientific excellence and compassionate care. The School has held its White Coat Ceremony since 1998. Students officially launch their Medicine journey by putting on the white coats and reciting the Hippocratic Oath for the first time.
Your white coat today is just the beginning, your road ahead in Medicine is lined with many, very important firsts, such as your first patient history and physical examination, your first suturing of a laceration, your first diagnosis of cancer,” said Kenneth Kaushansky, M.D., M.A.C.P., Senior Vice President for the Health Sciences, and Dean, School of Medicine, encouraging the incoming class. “The range of emotions you will experience during your career as a physician is unmatched in the human experience, and I hope during the journey on which you are embarking today, you embrace these words that epitomize the profession of Medicine: privilege, hard work, and responsibility.”
“Inspired by the ceremony, the Dean’s words, and starting medical school, Cassidy Alexandre, of Brooklyn, N.Y., and originally from Haiti, said he is looking forward to taking his passion for science and caring for people in need by entering Medicine. A graduate of City College in New York with a BS degree in Chemistry, Alexandre said despite recently shadowing a surgeon, he will keep his mind open to all specialties as he goes through medical school. His new classmate, Amy Rumack, of White Plains, N.Y., however, is centered on one aspect of Medicine – Pediatrics. Rumack, who received a BA in Biology at Hamilton College, thinks her love for children will drive her to become a pediatrician.
For the incoming class, the School received its most applications ever – nearly 4,600. Among the 124 students matriculating, their cumulative grade point average is in excess of 3.6 on a scale of 4.0. Their undergraduate degrees varied widely, from Biology, Mathematics, Engineering, and Economics, to Anthropology and English. Although the incoming class attended a variety of undergraduate schools, Stony Brook University (20) and Cornell University (12) were the two most common schools attended.
During the ceremony, Kamron Pourmand, Class of 2012, and a Stony Brook native, was presented with the School’s first Dean’s Choice Award. He was selected because of his commitment to the school and fellow classmates, as well exemplifying excellence academically and as a student leader. President of his class since his first year, Poumand also delivered the Student Address to the incoming class.
“Today marks your transition to a lifetime of service to patients,” said Pourmand. “Making mistakes will be part of your learning experiences, but persevere and learn from patients, as they will make your experience real and worthwhile.”
Also recognized were two SBU School of Medicine alumni.
Breena R. Taira, M.D., a Resident in Emergency Medicine at Stony Brook, and an affiliate faculty member of Stony Brook’s Graduate Program in Public Health, received the 2011 Outstanding Recent Graduate Award. Dr. Taira received both her M.D. (’05) and M.P.H. (’09) from Stony Brook University. She has over 30 peer-reviewed publications in Burn, Trauma and Public Health and has presented at many national and international meetings. Dr. Taira has worked with the World Health Organization and other organizations on efforts to assess the availability of emergency care and surgical services in the developing world.
Lee A. Fleisher, M.D., the Robert D. Dripps Professor and Chair of Anesthesiology and Critical Care, and Professor of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, received the 2011 Distinguished Alumnus Award. A graduate of Stony Brook in 1986, Dr. Fleisher is considered a worldwide expert on periopoerative quality of care, and his research interests fall primarily in perioperative risk assessment and risk reduction strategies and health services research. He is involved in assessing risk and defining best practices for patients undergoing noncardiac surgery. Elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Sciences in 1999, Dr. Fleisher is also Chair of the American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology Task Force on Guidelines on Perioperative Cardiovascular Evaluation. He has published many peer-reviewed articles, chapters, and reviews as well as edited or co-edited 14 books.
About Stony Brook University School of Medicine
Established in 1971, the Stony Brook University School of Medicine includes 25 academic departments centered on education, training, and advancing scientific research. The primary mission of the School is to educate caring and skilled physicians well-prepared to enter graduate and specialty training programs. The school’s graduate and specialty training programs are designed to educate medical specialists and investigators in the biomedical and clinical sciences to be well-prepared to advance the frontiers of research, clinical practice and education.
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