More than 160 students became doctors on Sunday afternoon after graduating from the School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Lisner Auditorium.
The graduates were instructed to put an M.D. at the end of their names and value every patient. Keynote speaker Dr. William DeVries, a professor and the chief of cardiothoracic surgery at the GW Hospital, told the new doctors to put their patients before themselves and congratulated them on joining a noble profession.
DeVries said there has been a decline in the medical profession because of greater coverage of medical mistakes, malpractice lawsuits and the current healthcare system.
“I’m sorry to have left it in such a mess, but I look forward to you fixing it,” DeVries said.
Student speaker Mohammed Ali, a long-serving Student Association senator, said doctors should lead with their hearts and never abandon their emotions.
“Emotions drive us, we should not check out emotions at the door,” Ali said. “We will heal injuries, cure diseases and save lives.”
SMHS Dean Dr. James Scott joked that only in the third year of medical school do doctors begin to know more medicine than their mothers.
Scott said his only regret is that not enough students have asked for his help over the years.
“While you may be moving on, we are not and we’re here for you,” Scott said. “If you need us we are here, we will always be there for you.”