CUPECOY–American University of the Caribbean (AUC) School of Medicine graduates gathered in St. Maarten on Saturday morning to attend the school’s 2017
commencement ceremony. The event honoured attendees’ academic accomplishments and signalled the start of graduates’ professional careers as MD-credentialed physicians.
AUC Assistant Dean for Service Learning and Community Affairs Golden Jackson, PhD, presided over the ceremony, which included a performances by Generation New Status Drum Corps and gospel singer Angie Pantophlet, invocations and benedictions by Father Yohanes Bally, and addresses by AUC Executive Dean and Chief Academic Officer Heidi Chumley, MD, and Director of Hospital Medicine at Emory Saint Joseph’s Hospital in Atlanta and 2008 graduate of AUC Dhaval Desai, MD.
Attendees gave a warm welcome Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports Silveria Jacobs, who attended the ceremony. After acknowledging Minister Jacob’s presence, Jackson described St. Maarten’s significant contributions and recognised the island’s role in shaping graduates’ understanding of global and community health issues.
“We would like to give an applause in thanks to the Government of St. Maarten,” said Jackson. “Country St. Maarten has supported AUC for many years. We deeply value the strong bond between AUC and Country St. Maarten and look forward to many years of engaged partnership.”
Nearly 200 graduates from the United States and Canada brought family and friends to St. Maarten for the commencement ceremony. Newly-minted physicians walked the auditorium stage at Sonesta Ocean Point Resort to receive their academic hoods and diplomas.
Among this year’s graduates was St. Maarten native Neha Dayalani, who had a large group of friends and family in the audience. Dr. Dayalani, who lived in St. Maarten prior to attending AUC, will soon begin a paediatrics residency at Hurley Medical Center in Michigan. At the conclusion of the ceremony, Minister Jacobs was able to meet and congratulate Dr. Dayalani on her achievement of becoming a physician.
Like Dr. Dayalani, AUC graduates will soon begin residency training in various medical specialties, including family medicine, internal medicine, paediatrics, surgery, neurology, radiology and anaesthesiology. By training globally-minded physicians – many of whom enter primary care – AUC and its graduates are helping to fill critical physician shortages.
In her remarks, Dr. Chumley urged graduates to turn to their new profession in times of adversity and recognise the power they have as healers. “No matter who walks through that door, you took an oath to treat your patients equally, to help them in their time of need,” she said. “While the world will always have barriers, physicians remove them every minute of every day.”
This year’s graduates join a network of more than 6,000 AUC alumni around the world. Physicians trained at AUC go on to become competent, compassionate leaders in their field and their communities.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/66417-200-students-graduate-from-medical-school