Incoming medical students receive white coats at annual ceremony

Students wearing white coats in Severance Hall

The White Coat ceremony is a defining moment for medical students—marking the beginning of their healthcare careers. 216 new Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine students and their families celebrated the occasion on July 16.

Dean Stan Gerson presided over the ceremony with Lia Logio, MD, vice dean for medical education, welcoming new students and their families to the School of Medicine. 

Stephanie Teal, MD, the Arthur H. Bill Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at CWRU School of Medicine and chair of the obstetrics and gynecology department at University Hospitals reflected on the power and privilege of the white coat as the keynote speaker.

Students recited their own oath of professionalism at the ceremony's conclusion, which they crafted collectively as a class during orientation week. This pledge focused on confidentiality, respect, empathy, accountability, leadership and innovation—sentiments echoed by Dean Gerson in his remarks.

“Like you, we—and the many pioneers in the field of medicine before you—realize that the status quo is unacceptable,” Gerson said. “We strive for a healthier planet and a healthier population here in Cleveland and across the globe. And you will help us attain that goal.”