The class of 2016 from Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Dental Medicine don their white coats for the first time.
ALL PHOTOS BY STEVE LIPOFSKY
Members of the Harvard Medical School community devote their careers to teaching, research, patient care and advocacy.
The HMS class comprises 87 women and 78 men, from 29 states, nine foreign countries and 71 different undergraduate institutions.
Jules Dienstag, dean for medical education and the Carl W. Walter Professor of Medicine, welcomed the class of 2016.
Two hundred new medical and dental students were challenged by Dean Jeffery S. Flier Tuesday to use their years at Harvard Medical School to find new ways to improve how care reaches the suffering.
R. Bruce Donoff, dean of the School of Dental Medicine and the Walter C. Guralnick Distinguished Professor of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, addresses the incoming class.
“The donning of the coat,” said Dean for Medical Education Jules Dienstag, “signifies a remarkably important transition in your lives. By accepting these coats, you officially step into the world of doctoring and medicine: The beginning of your career in medicine.”
Alvin Poussaint, faculty associate dean for student affairs, told students, “Don’t be afraid to talk and be a team with your fellow classmates … Get help if you need it.”
At the Peabody Society ceremony, Society Master Ron Arky, the Daniel D. Federman, M.D. Professor of Medicine and Medical Education, welcomed new students.
New students in the Peabody Society hailed from Los Angeles to Oklahoma City and New York, from West Africa to Shanghai and Toronto.
A student in the London Society gets his coat.
Castle Society students listen attentively before receiving their coats.
Students are presented with a white coat purchased by the Aesculapian Club, founded in 1902 to benefit life at Harvard Medical School.
Students were told the most exiting things happening in medicine now are where boundaries are being breached.
"You will lead the waves of change," students were told.
A new jacket for a student in the Holmes Society.
"We want you to create your own paths," students were told before receiving jackets.
Some advice to the new students on White Coat Day: "Whatever you do in medicine, the patient should always come first."
"Your white coat should not rob you of your compassion and empathy," students were told.
"When all is said and done, the best thing about this place is the person sitting next to you," Arky told students.
Big smiles for a big day.
"It's an awesome time to be here," Dean Oriol told the students.
"You will lead the waves of change," Oriol said.
Students gathered outside Gordon Hall for photos.
The excitement was palpable.
Students were encouraged to be critical thinkers and problem solvers.
"The white coat does not put you on pedestal," Pouissant told new class members.
The coat makes you a partner with your patient and other care givers, the students were told.
The coat gives access to your patients' private lives, which carries a significant responsibility, students were told.
“You’re diverse in every imaginable dimension except one: the promise that you represent to the field of medicine,” said HMS Dean Jeffrey Flier said in his address to students.
The students were told they represented 3.9 percent of 5,804 HMS applicants.
Click ahead to see more photos of the Class of 2016 on White Coat Day.
Nancy Oriol, dean of students, leads new students to Brigham and Women’s Hospital to meet with their first patients.