Founding Dean and former Chief Academic Officer Paul Evans, DO ’79, delivered the
keynote address to 136 osteopathic medical students and their family members and friends
during the 13th annual DO White Coat Ceremony held at the Infinite Energy Theater
in Duluth on Oct. 20, 2017. “I had the privilege to preside at the first White Coat
Ceremony in 2005,” he said, “when Georgia Campus – Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (GA-PCOM) was the first osteopathic college in the deep South.”
At the morning ceremony, Dr. Evans explained that the white coat “has been a symbol
of the healthcare professions for many generations” and that “wearing it is a privilege
bestowed upon all those who earn a place in the healing arts.”
He said, “As the DO class of 2021 stands before us, we celebrate their brightly shining
promise, recognizing the journey they will undergo is long, full of individual and
family sacrifices, and a path that will sometimes require great courage and perseverance
to reach the goal of becoming a fully-trained physician.”
At the afternoon White Coat Ceremony held for 87 first-year pharmacy students, Dr.
Chika Onyegam, a pharmacist who precepts PCOM School of Pharmacy students at the Veterans Administration, addressed the PharmD class of 2021.
She said that “pharmacists are often cited as professionals that Americans trust the
most,” noting that patients want pharmacists to be humble, empathetic, kind, knowledgeable,
detail-oriented and front-line educators. She called on the students to “pay attention
to the patients we encounter” and to become patient advocates.
Class chairs Morgan Fuller (DO ’21) and Lilytte Tagala (PharmD ’21) delivered their
respective class addresses, while soloist Obianuju Nwamah (DO ’21) sang “I Believe”
to an appreciative audience.
Recalling that she spent her summers working at her father’s practice, DO student
doctor Fuller said, “I’ve ended up at the right place at the right time.” She reminded
her class that their white coat pockets “will carry our commitment to learning and
advocating for our patients.”
Tagala noted that, to her, the white coat will be “a visual reminder we will persevere
and not give up ... we are all on this journey together.”
Established in 2005, PCOM Georgia is a private, not-for-profit, accredited institute of higher education dedicated
to the healthcare professions. The Suwanee, Georgia, campus is affiliated with Philadelphia
College of Osteopathic Medicine, a premier osteopathic medical school with a storied
history. PCOM Georgia offers doctoral degrees in osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, and
physical therapy and graduate degrees in biomedical sciences, medical laboratory science,
and physician assistant studies. Emphasizing "a whole person approach to care," PCOM
Georgia focuses on educational excellence, interprofessional education and service
to the wider community. The campus is also home to the Georgia Osteopathic Care Center,
an osteopathic manipulative medicine clinic, which is open to the public by appointment.
For more information, visit pcom.edu/georgia or call 678-225-7500.
For more information, contact: Barbara Myers Senior Public Relations Manager Email: BarbaraMy@pcom.edu Office: 678-225-7532 | Cell: