MD White Coat Ceremony & Plunge
White Coat Ceremony 2019
August 16, 2019
The White Coat Ceremony is the culmination of an intensive orientation program, welcoming incoming MD students to both Washington University and the medical profession. First-year students arrive on campus two weeks prior to the ceremony for orientation and the Medical Plunge – four days of site visits, visiting speakers and community engagements that lay a foundation for understanding health disparities and social determinants of health.
The entire incoming class contributes to the process of writing their White Coat Ceremony oath. Above, hear what the oath-writing process meant to students in the entering class of 2018.
The symbol of a profession
At the White Coat Ceremony, incoming students receive their white coats from School of Medicine faculty members, then take an oath — one they have written as a class — pledging honesty and integrity in their practice of medicine. Family and friends are invited to witness as students take their first symbolic step into the medical profession.
The White Coat Ceremony at Washington University is supported in part by the Arnold P. Gold Foundation, which works with students and professionals to instill a culture of humanism in medicine. Humanism in medicine is characterized by respect, dignity and compassion for patients, with sensitivity to the diverse values and backgrounds of others.
Photos and stories
Select a year below to see photos, videos and more stories from past White Coat Ceremonies.