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124 Incoming Medical Students Receive Symbolic “White Coat”


124 Incoming Medical Students Receive Symbolic “White Coat”

Former SBU quarterback, a theater artist from Long Island, among the 124 new students

All 124 incoming Stony Brook medical students took the Hippocratic Oath for the first time.

STONY BROOK, N.Y., August 28, 2012 – The Stony Brook University School of Medicine Class of 2016 officially entered the world of medical training on August 19 at the School’s traditional “White Coat” ceremony. All 124 students with varied educational and professional backgrounds and from 61 colleges and university nationwide put on their new physician-in-training white coat and took the Hippocratic Oath for the first time.
Held at Stony Brook since 1998, the White Coat ceremony is an initiation rite for incoming medical students at established medical schools around the country. The white coat is symbolic to medicine as a profession based on professionalism, scientific excellence, responsibility, and compassionate care. To accommodate the growing medical needs and specialized care for the U.S. population, the Association of American Medical Colleges recognizes the need to train more physicians in coming years.

Dr. Kenneth Kaushansky, Senior Vice President for the Health Sciences, and Dean, School of Medicine, presents Michael Coulter, the 2011 Stony Brook Seawolves’ quarterback who graduated with a BS in Biochemistry, with a Stony Brook Medicine white coat.

“Wearing the white coat brings with it much responsibility, as a caregiver, problem-solver, scientist and communicator,” said Kenneth Kaushansky, MD, MACP., Senior Vice President for the Health Sciences, and Dean, School of Medicine. “I promise you, your path in medicine will never be dull, filled with opportunities to help transform the lives of countless patients. The Class of 2016 comes to Stony Brook equipped with a myriad of talents, interests, humanity and academic success, all of which will serve you well in your medical journey that starts with your Stony Brook Medicine white coat.”
During the ceremony, Stony Brook University School of Medicine also recognized its 2012 Distinguished Alumnus – Dr. Douglas S. Katz, ’90, Director of Body Imaging and Vice Chair for Clinical Research and Education at Winthrop-University Hospital, and Professor of Clinical Radiology at Stony Brook University School of Medicine.
Eager to begin their medical training, the new students recognized that they will have many challenges in medical school and felt excited about entering a career devoted to helping people.

Marshall Leonard, a former Major League Soccer player, is fitted with his first white coat at Stony Brook’s traditional ceremony for incoming medical students by Dr. Latha Chandran, Vice Dean for Undergraduate Medical Education. Dr. Kenneth Kaushansky, Senior Vice President for the Health Sciences, and Dean, School of Medicine, looks on.

“As a child, I had two dreams, to become a professional soccer player and a doctor,” said Marshall Leonard, a Columbus, Ga., native who played Major League Soccer for six years after graduating from the University of Virginia with a BA in African & Afro-American Studies. “My focus and energy is now on medicine, and I am honored to be a member of the Stony Brook Class of 2016.”
Another athlete who expects to bring his passion for excellence from the playing field to medical clinics is Michael Coulter from Yorba Linda, Calif., who played quarterback for the Stony Brook Seawolves in 2011 graduated with a BS in Biochemistry.
“I came to Stony Brook as an undergraduate because of its strong scientific reputation, the opportunity to play college football, and to study in a unique place away from home,” said Coulter. “I have observed the momentum of Stony Brook Medicine in recent years and am excited about the opportunities to study and contribute to the institution as a medical student. I know I will be challenged and stretched to my capacity, thus making me the best physician possible.”
Following a traditional route based on scientific research and education, Michelle Mo, from Berkeley Heights, N.J., who has a BA in Biology from Washington University, and a MS and PhD in Pharmacology from Yale University, will expand her scientific expertise to include patient care as a physician-scientist when she completes medical school.
“The idea of becoming a physician-scientist so I can continue to conduct research in areas related to biomarkers of disease, plus combine that with new skills as a clinician, is an exciting prospect for making an immediate impact on patients’ lives,” said Mo.
Eve Feinberg, a native Long Islander who grew up in Rockville Center, took a circuitous route to pursuing medicine. Most recently, Feinberg was a theatre artist and set designer with a BA and MFA in Theatre from Barnard College and the University of Maryland, respectively. Feinberg said that the great attention to detail, organization, and human ingenuity involved in the theatre arts is not unlike that developed in successful hospital settings.
“I took a non-linear path to medicine, and that process taught me to understand myself and prepared me to begin a life-long commitment to medicine,” said Feinberg, who also overcame visual impairment as a child and young adult before deciding to become a doctor.
In 2012 the School of Medicine received an all-time high of 4,918 applicants. Among the 124 incoming students, their cumulative grade point average is 3.7 on a scale of 4.0. Two of the most common undergraduate schools attended by the incoming class were Stony Brook University (22) and Cornell University (8).


About Stony Brook University School of Medicine:

Established in 1971, the Stony Brook University School of Medicine includes 25 academic departments. The three missions of the School are to advance the understanding of the origins of human health and disease, train the next generation of committed, curious and highly capable physicians, and deliver word-class compassionate healthcare. As a member of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) and a Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) accredited medical school, Stony Brook is one of the foremost institutes of higher medical education in the country. Each year the School trains nearly 500 medical students and over 480 medical residents and fellows. Faculty research includes National Institutes of Health-sponsored programs in neurological diseases, cancer, cardiovascular disorders, biomedical imaging, regenerative medicine, infectious diseases, and many other topics. Physicians on the School of Medicine faculty deliver world class medical care through more than 30,000 inpatient, 80,000 emergency room, and approximately 350,000 outpatient visits annually at Stony Brook University Hospital and affiliated clinical programs, making its clinical services one of the largest and highest quality on Long Island, New York. To learn more, visit

© Stony Brook University 2012

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