122 students in the Renaissance School of Medicine (RSOM) at Stony Brook University received their diplomas today, two months early; 63 in total will be deployed next week to the frontlines of the fight against COVID-19.
The graduates shared their achievement via a Facebook Live ceremony so that families, friends and loved ones — physically separated to accommodate social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19 — were able to see the students receive their MDs and take the Hippocratic Oath.
An executive order by Governor Andrew Cuomo allowed for early graduation among senior medical students who met all academic requirements. The leadership team at RSOM immediately implemented the requirements needed to ensure the students could step into the physician workforce.
Of the 122 graduates, 49 will join Stony Brook University Hospital as assisting physicians on Monday, April 13; 14 will join the ranks at Winthrop University Hospital, where they completed their third- and fourth-year clerkships and/or matched there for their residency. The new doctors will be under the supervision of attending physicians to help address the growing number and complexity of patients being admitted to the hospital, precipitated by the COVID-19 pandemic. All graduates have taken a COVID-19 preparedness course; the 49 students who will be working are hired for six to eight weeks within the hospital system to work within the hospitalist teams.
“We celebrate the accomplishments of 122 outstanding Renaissance School of Medicine students — women and men who will be advancing their careers as inquisitive, compassionate and caring physicians,” said Dr. Kenneth Kaushansky, Dean of the Renaissance School of Medicine at Stony Brook University. “Their humanity and devotion to the principles of medicine have been truly inspiring.”
Dr. Kaushansky co-presided over the virtual graduation ceremony with Dr. Latha Chandran, Vice Dean for Academic and Faculty Affairs. Visit Facebook.com/StonyBrookMedicine to see the replay. The presentation of candidates was conducted and students were awarded their degrees during the virtual ceremony.
“More than 50 percent of our graduates will immediately be working to help handle the COVID-19 crisis affecting all of us. A special thanks to all of you who opted to work right after graduation,” said Dr. Chandran.