Commencement day at OUWB
103 students became doctors during an inspirational ceremony
Class of 2018 members of O U W B’s DocAppella choir singing on stage in front of colored flags at their commencement
The Class of 2018 OUWB DocAppella choir members sang the national anthem at their Commencement. These members included: Cassandra Hastings, Truc-Vi Duong, Katherine Williams, Melody Lin, Miriam Bukhsh, Timothy Pow, Yujin Oh, Jatin Sharma, Craig Profant, Johnathon Recknagel, Kevin Serdahely, Scott Myers and David Vinh-Nguyen.

The Class of 2018 received their M.D. degrees during a commencement ceremony held before family, friends and their fellow OUWB classmates. Graduates approached the stage to be hooded by their PRISM mentors and, for some, by their family members who share the title “doctor.”

The keynote speaker Stephen Ray Mitchell, M.D., MBA, MACP, Joseph Butenas Professor and Dean of Medical Education at the Georgetown University School of Medicine, delivered an inspirational address drawing from the significance of the word “Namaste,” meaning: the light within me recognizes the light within you.

“It is crucial to find a way to ask the right questions and find the light in the heart of each patient,” Dr. Mitchell said. “Seek out the light within each patient and within yourself.”

The ceremony also included an address from student speaker Jeff Cross, M.D., who reminded students that, while pursuing their passion for medicine, not to forget their roots as “teachers, sculptors, competition bodybuilders, mothers and fathers.”

“When we leave here, we continue pursuing our ideals, but always strive to retain the unique facets of our personality that make us truly amazing,” Cross said. “I hope you never forget who you are under the white coat, nor why you put it on each morning.”

Robert Folberg, M.D., OUWB Founding Dean, led the new physicians in a recitation of an oath they wrote that mirrors their values as a class. Before the recitation, he listed the many promises about to be made by the Class of 2018, including the promise to treat all patients with empathy and compassion and to assume responsibility for outcomes that fall below expectations.

“Yours is the first class to mention the word “humility” in a class oath,” Dr. Folberg said. “I want to be certain that you understand what it means to be humble. A humble person enters the room, and she is charismatic.”

He then proposed ways in which a doctor can be confident while maintaining his or her sense of humility, such as saying “thank you” frequently and realizing that, despite their new degrees, they have many things yet to learn and master.

The new OUWB alumni then marched a full circle around the O’rena, waving to their proud friends and family members as they exited the room as doctors.

For photos, visit OUWB’s Commencement Facebook album.