August 2014

Vickers-Bookcase2The hot, hazy days of August are among the most uneventful of the year in some parts of the world. Not so at the School of Medicine, where August is a time of high excitement and new beginnings, as a new crop of medical students begins one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of their young lives.

The 2014 White Coat Ceremony took place Sunday, August 17 at the Alys Stephens Performing Arts Center on the UAB campus. The annual ceremony marks the students’ transition from preclinical to clinical medicine. This was my first White Coat Ceremony as Senior Vice President for Medicine and Dean of the School of Medicine, and I was honored to welcome the students to our program.

   Total Number of Applications 3,107
Alabama: 438
Out-of-State: 2,669
   Undergraduate Colleges Represented 47
   Degrees of Study 37
   Applicants Accepted 258
Alabama: 193
Out-of-State: 65
   Entering Class 186
Alabama Residents: 169 
Out-of-State: 17
   Age Range 21-33
   Women 83
   American Indian or Alaska Native 2
   Asian 29
   Black or African American 10
   Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin 5
   Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander 1
   White 135
   Other 5
   No response 9
   Medical Scientist Training Program
Applied: 268
Offered: 24
Accepted: 7
At the ceremony, each of the 186 members of the Class of 2018 was presented with the traditional white coat, courtesy of our Medical Alumni Association, in the presence of family, friends, faculty, and staff. Highlights of the afternoon included a moving and inspiring keynote address by Hussein Abdullatif, M.D., professor of pediatrics and faculty winner of the 2013 Leonard Tow Award for Humanism in Medicine.

The students also recited the class mission statement that they had composed during their first course, “Patient, Doctor, and Society,” which focuses on the role physicians play in society, with emphasis on professionalism, compassion, responsibility, ethics, and the doctor/patient relationship.
The class mission statement reads: "As students of medicine, we dedicate ourselves to a life of selfless service. Upholding a belief in human dignity, we vow to embrace diversity, work collaboratively, learn diligently, and serve compassionately. With humility and devotion, we will never forget our motivation for pursuing a career in medicine." A video of the 2014 White Coat Ceremony is available on our website.

The Class of 2018 is a diverse and exemplary one. The chart included here provides interesting statistics about these young people, but their stories run much deeper than mere numbers can convey. We are privileged to play a role in one of the most important chapters of their lives.

Selwyn M. Vickers, M.D., F.A.C.S.
James C. Lee Endowed Chair

Senior Vice President for Medicine and Dean

*Editor's note: Because students may enter more than one race/ethnicity on their application, the total in the table by race/ethnicity is greater than the entering class size.