FAU Confers M.D. Degrees to Class of 2017

It’s official. The 61 members of the class of 2017 of FAU's Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine are now the nation’s newest physicians.

By gisele galoustian | 4/28/2017

It’s official. The 61 members of the class of 2017 of the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine at Florida Atlantic University are now the nation’s newest physicians. This long-awaited day was celebrated by students, family, friends, faculty and dignitaries at a graduation ceremony today in the Carole and Barry Kaye Performing Arts Auditorium. Following four years of rigorous training, the class members received their Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) degrees. They will be headed to various institutions throughout Florida and the nation for their medical residency training, which is required to become board-certified physicians.   

“It is a privilege and a pleasure for me to celebrate this momentous occasion at my first graduation ceremony as dean,” said Phillip Boiselle, M.D., dean of FAU’s Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine. “Our students are among the nation’s best and brightest graduates and they have made us all very proud today. We wish them continued success as physicians and anticipate that they will make many important contributions toward advancing health of their patients and communities throughout their careers. Congratulations class of 2017.”  

Following the presentation of The Ticho Prize, The Greenwald Award for Academic Excellence, The Caroline McConnell McGill, M.D. Award, and The Luther W. Holloway Award, FAU’s College of Medicine recognized two graduates who will serve as physicians in the United States Navy: Kasey Conklin and Sherrie Moore.

Lewis First, M.D., professor and chair, Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine at the University of Vermont, delivered the keynote address.

FAU President John Kelly, Gary W. Perry, Ph.D., FAU provost and vice president for academic affairs, and Boiselle conferred the M.D. degrees following the keynote address. Sarah K. Wood, M.D., senior associate dean for medical education in FAU’s College of Medicine, announced the candidates as they came  forward to receive their M.D. degrees.

Stuart L. Markowitz, M.D., senior associate dean for student affairs and admissions, and Jennifer W. Caceres, M.D., assistant dean for student affairs, both in FAU’s College of Medicine, concluded the event with a special hooding ceremony, which is “rite of passage” that formally acknowledges the achievements of the class members. The graduating class later recited the Hippocratic Oath in unison to instill the importance of maintaining the highest standards of performance, behavior and compassion as physicians.

“The hooding ceremony and the recital of the Hippocratic Oath are the most powerful moments during graduation because these long-standing traditions impress upon the graduates the magnitude of the responsibility they are undertaking as physicians,” said Markowitz. “To share this special moment with their family, friends, colleagues and mentors is an experience that they will never forget.”

Following graduation, FAU’s medical school graduates will spend between three to five years of their medical careers for the next phase of their training — the specialized program known as residency.  

The class of 2017 placed in top institutions such Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, in Boston; Mount Sinai, Icahn School College of Medicine, in New York City; Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta; Cleveland Medical Center, Case Western Reserve University Hospitals, in Cleveland; Duke University School of Medicine in Durham; Naval Medical Center in San Diego; Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis; and New York University School of Medicine in New York City.  

More than one-third of the class (22 of the 61 medical students) will remain in Florida to do their residencies, which is a record number since the medical school’s inception in 2011. The graduates will be working at various institutions in Florida including: Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami; Shands Hospital, University of Florida College of Medicine, in Gainesville; University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine in Tampa; Nicklaus Children's Hospital in Miami; Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital in St. Petersburg; and Palm Beach County consortium hospitals affiliated with FAU’s Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine in Boca Raton.

FAU’s College of Medicine is one of 147 accredited medical schools in the U.S., and admitted its inaugural class of 64 students in 2011. In July 2014, FAU welcomed its charter class of 36 residents in its first residency program in internal medicine. The College of Medicine, in partnership with its consortium of five Palm Beach County hospitals, sponsors graduate medical education programs in internal medicine, general surgery and emergency medicine. These programs successfully filled all of their available positions through the 2017 match process.