The white coats are coming
LAU’s School of Pharmacy holds fifth annual white coat ceremony celebrating students’ graduation to their first professional year.
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The School of Pharmacy honored its 76 freshly admitted first-professional-year pharmacy students with its fifth annual white coat ceremony, held on October 13, 2011, at the Selina Korban Auditorium on the Byblos campus in the presence of LAU President Dr. Joseph G. Jabbra and LAU academic officers.
The ceremony marks the students’ transition from preclinical studies to clinical health sciences.
“The ceremony marks a new beginning for the students,” says Dr. Aline Milane, an assistant professor at the school, adding that it celebrates both their successful completion of the first two pre-pharmacy years and their “promotion into their first professional year.”
The white coat ceremony is a relatively new ritual in various medical and paramedical practices — including osteopathic, dental, pharmacy and veterinary schools. LAU’s School of Pharmacy held its first in 2007.
“The white coat is a symbol of your transition from students to student pharmacists,” said the Interim Dean of the School of Pharmacy Dr. Pierre A. Zalloua at the ceremony, adding that it reminds the students of the ethical mantle that will fall on their shoulders as pharmacists.
Encouraging students to don the coat with “pride, dignity, joy, humbleness and competence,” Zalloua urged them to build bridges of friendship and trust in their professional practice, with their colleagues and others in the healthcare field.
The student honorees received their white coats from various faculty members at the ceremony.
The ceremony concluded with the students reciting the Pledge of Professionalism, which emphasizes the importance of integrity and ethical behavior in clinical practice, as well as of lifelong learning.
“These first two pre-pharmacy years are very tough and competitive for all students,” says Dr. Jad Abdallah, Acting Assistant Dean for Student Affairs at the School of Pharmacy. “Which is why it’s very important to hold this kind of ceremony. It really gives them the push they need to start their first professional year,” he adds.
“It’s an honor to be taking part in this ceremony and wearing the white coat,” says Mirna Simhairi, adding that the truly hard work is about to begin. “We’re very excited about it.”
LAU’s School of Pharmacy was accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) in 2002. It was the first — and remains the only — ACPE-accredited school of its kind outside of the United States.