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D.P.T. Class of 2021 Marks Milestone at White Coat Ceremony

Families and friends and other supporters of the students joined to recognize the milestone transition and progression in their education as physical therapists.

April 15, 2019
D.P.T. Class of 2021 White Coat Ceremony
D.P.T. Class of 2021 White Coat Ceremony

“Our faculty thoughtfully considered and discussed the appropriate tone, format and timing of this event for a number of years before initiating this ceremony in 2016. We hold this event at the end of the first year of didactic study, just prior to our first-year students beginning their first full-time clinical experiences, to symbolize the transition from the classroom to the clinic,” explained Michael Majsak, P.T., Ed.D., associate professor and chair of the Department of Physical Therapy. “The tone is one of reflection and affirmation of the commitment of our students to use their knowledge and learned skills to their full potential in caring for their clients and patients as servant leaders.”

Edward C. Halperin, M.D., M.A., chancellor and chief executive officer, offered remarks with a poignant theme that “care” is a verb, not a noun, emphasizing the importance of sensitivity, empathy and advocacy in clinical practice. The theme was echoed by other speakers including Robert W. Amler, M.D., M.B.A., dean of the School of Health Sciences and Practice and vice president for government affairs, Ben C. Watson, Ph.D., vice dean, School of Health Sciences and Practice, Gale J. Lavinder, P.T., Ed.D., assistant professor of physical therapy and director of clinical education and recent alumna Lauren Perillo, P.T., D.P.T. ’12, senior physical therapist at NYU Langone Health.

The 41 doctoral candidates comprising the Class of 2021 were cloaked in their white coats by their physical therapy faculty professional development advisors, before reciting the American Physical Therapy Association's Pledge for Physical Therapy.

“It was a day of pride, accomplishment, and mindfulness for all in attendance,” said Dr. Majsak.

SHSP D.P.T. Class of 2021 White Coat Ceremony