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News and Events

College of Veterinary Medicine Dean Neil C. Olson, DVM, PhD, congratulates Jenelle Francis on earning her white coat.

Jason Razo selected his grandmother, Norma McWilliams, to present him with his coat.

Alyssa Thomas reminded her classmates that they had successfully pushed through mental walls to reach this point in their education.

Alexis Zallas is assisted into her white coat by her father, Nicholas Zallas.

The Missouri Veterinary Medical Association provided lapel pins for the ceremony. MVMA President Chuck Berry, DVM, presents a pin to Brian Jochems.

White Coat Ceremony Ushers
in Clinics for Class of 2017

The MU College of Veterinary Medicine held its 15th annual White Coat Ceremony on Oct. 18, to celebrate the success of Class of 2017 members in completing their first two years of the veterinary curriculum and advancing to their clinical training.

The event marked the midpoint in the students’ professional curriculum. The first two years of preclinical training included courses in anatomy, physiology, cell and molecular biology, pathology, pharmacology, microbiology, virology and toxicology. They also learned fundamentals in clinical disciplines, including anesthesiology, clinical pathology, radiology, public health and medicine and surgery. The students each received a white laboratory coat before starting their next two years working in the Veterinary Health Center in the Small Animal, Food Animal and Equine hospitals, as well as completing preceptorships in private practices or with public agencies.

“Instead of studying late into the night for an equine anatomy test, you may instead be relearning gastrointestinal anatomy as you assist in the surgical resection of 10 feet of small intestine from a horse … at 2 in the morning,” said John Dodam, DVM, MS, PhD, chairman of the Department of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery, as he welcomed the students to the next phase of their education.

Alyssa Thomas gave the response on behalf of her classmates, quoting author A.A. Milne, “You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”

“Don’t doubt yourself, don’t overthink and know that you are smarter than you think,” she said.“We have been equipped with an arsenal of knowledge from these past two years, and while life may not be multiple choice, never forget that you do have a phone-a-friend option.”

The 113 students who took part in the ceremony selected a family member, friend or mentor to present their white coats and assist in donning them. Following the ceremony, which was held at the Missouri Theatre in Columbia, a reception was held in the students’ honor.

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Last Update: February 29, 2012