Clad in their white coats and stethoscopes, reciting the Hippocratic Oath, 50 medical students were formally enrolled with the International American University College of Medicine (IAUCOM) at its 24th White Coat ceremony, held at Kimatrai Hotel in Vieux-Fort, last Friday.
The prime minister’s press secretary, Jadia Jn. Pierre Emmanuel, in her keynote address to the students, said the prime minister has placed emphases on medical schools in St. Lucia which is reflected in the 2013 budget.
“Your field is an important one and it is reflected in the 2013 budget… The prime minister has announced that Vieux-Fort will be declared a university town,” Emmanuel said.
She added that the government of St Lucia will continue to assist IAU in its operation.
“When you choose IAU, you did not simply choose a school, you choose a home,” she said.
Emmanuel said that she hopes the students will not only be excellent students, but also excellent doctors. She told the students that they can expect excellent hospitality from residents in the south.
“You are in safe hands…” she said.
Dean of Basic Sciences, Dr. Ezzeldin Nasser, described the student’s choice to enter the field of medicine as an extraordinary challenge.
“Commit yourself to a lifelong journey of leaning-how to cure, relieve and comfort with humbleness and kindness, “Dr. Nasser said.
He also called upon the students to seek the counsel of others when necessary, so as to fulfill the obligation to those who are entrusted to their care.
Dr. Aleric Soans, a lecturer at the school, in his remarks, said: “ Today you are wearing a symbol of purity, truth and frankness. Wear the white coat proudly and never forget the respect and responsibility that comes with it.”
He also called upon the students to always remember the white coat during the execution of their duties.
“Never forget the hard work that is expected of you, not just as students, but also as members of the medical fraternity,” he said.
Remarks were also given by students of the school who promised to do their best in their exams and make the school proud.
Students of the school were also awarded for their excellent performances in the National Board of Medical Examinations (NBME), last semester.
After the ceremony, Sibi Gopalakrishnan, public relations officer of the school, said over the years the number of students enrolled with the school has increased.
He also added that the excellent performances of students of the school in their final exams are testimony of the quality of education that is provided at the school.