On July 6, 168 medical students gathered in Davidge Hall to celebrate the next chapter in their medical education. The Annual Student Clinician’s Ceremony is held early summer, before the beginning of the third year of medical school to acknowledge the successful completion of their first two years of classroom training, as well as the significance of their upcoming clinical years.
The ceremony provides an opportunity to address some of the anxiety students may feel upon entering their clinical rotations by discussing fears and expectations, and revisiting the oath taken during the White Coat Ceremony.
Rana Malek, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, was chosen by the University of Maryland School of Medicine Gold Humanism Society to be this year’s keynote speaker. "You’re at the start of a special two-year journey—a time to truly experience what is best in medicine," she said. "While there will be times in the next two years that will be hard and make you want to give up, remember that your patients need your voice to fight for them."
Dr. Malek challenged students to consider the causes and consequences of social and economic inequities while taking care of patients. "What you see in the hospital is the direct result of social policies that prevent individuals from living healthy lives," she said. "When we see patients we focus on the medicine or the surgery we can do, but what would really impact your patient’s health is where and how they live."
Bennie Jeng, MD, Professor and Chair of Ophthalmology & Visual Sciences, also addressed the students. "As you begin the next phase of your medical education, remember the oath taken during your White Coat Ceremony. Recommit to those promises that you made then, it will serve as a constant reminder of your commitment to your patients and the profession," he told the students. "Recognize that serving in the medical profession is a privilege and if you practice medicine with responsibility, compassion, and humility, you will succeed."
This ceremony followed two days of practical skills sessions, small group discussions, and panel presentations pertaining to professional and ethical issues in patient care.