Physical and Occupational Therapy, Medical Laboratory Science students honored

MLS students display their white coats after ceremonyThe WVU School of Medicine’s Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy and Medical Laboratory Sciences programs recently celebrated the transition from classroom to clinical setting with the traditional White Coat Ceremony. All three programs held separate ceremonies honoring students and faculty members. Pictured are Medical Laboratory Science students in their white coats after the ceremony.

“For our students in professional programs, this ceremony is exciting because they have worked and studied so hard, and now they are prepared to begin their educational experiences in the field in real-life situations,” MaryBeth Mandich, P.T., Ph.D., associate dean for professional and undergraduate programs in the School of Medicine and chair of physical therapy, said. “Often the ceremonies occur at a point in the curricula where they really need that excitement and infusion of energy that comes from clinical work.”

As a traditional symbol of the healthcare professions, the white coat represents care, service and commitment to the profession. The ceremony stresses the importance of the clinician-patient relationship and the relevance of the white coat as a cloak of compassion. The White Coat Ceremonies are generously supported by alumni from each program, who are invited to become white coat sponsors.

“For faculty, these ceremonies are often very touching and serve as a reminder about why we do what we do,” Dr. Mandich said. “It is a great experience for students, families and faculty attending these ceremonies.”