Thirty-one medical students enrolled at the All Saint’s University School of Medicine in Dominica have received white coats at a special ceremony held on Saturday.
The White Coat Ceremony formally marks an educational milestone for the students who have completed four semesters of basic sciences and now continue to pre-clinical studies.
Dean of the school, Dr. Terrence Marcelle, encouraged students to wear the coats with respect and dignity.
He also advised students to remain human as they go through their career, “as humanism is something that is pervasive but lacking in a number of people.”
“Humility will carry you through this world,” he said. “I trust that you will remember as you wear these white coats that facilities you will be working at, the members of staff where the Doctors will treat you with respect. Do not believe that you are bigger than you are. Some of the professionals believe that they are better than other people…you are not better, you are different. As Doctors we are different, we learn the act of healing.”
Meanwhile, Education Minister Petter Saint Jean noted that he is cognisance of the fact that the students who are putting on the white coat are doing so, “with an understanding that it symbolizes the vow that you make to provide comprehensive and compassionate patient care, to define each patient as a person first and then to consider the illness and to keep the patient’s best interest at heart.”
“In effect, I believe that you are committing yourselves to providing the best possible care to another human being and in so doing maintaining the professional integrity and adhering to ethical principles,” he noted.
He urged the medical students to take the responsibility seriously as the career they have chosen places them in a position to impact on so many lives, “so many livelihoods and so many economies.”
Acting Prime Minister, Dr. Kenneth Darroux has revealed that in Dominica All Saints University has not only survived, but has grown from strength-to-strength; from an enrollment of less than 100 students to over 500.
He told the students that they have taken a decision to have chosen a noble profession.
“Such a noble and humane profession requires noble men and noble women with noble hearts and noble intentions and whilst one has to aspire to be in a comfortable place financially, that is it should never be about the economic gains, and the love for humanity is what should drive you to be the best physician that ever was,” Dr Darroux remarked.