On Saturday, June 11, 2011 it was with a sense of pride and accomplishment that nearly 800 medical students, drawn from 30 different countries, graduated as part of St. George’s University School of Medicine Commencement Ceremony at Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center in New York City, NY. This year’s commencement ceremony was particularly special as it marked the Keith B. Taylor Global Scholars Program (KBTGSP) charter class graduation. The 54 charter class students started the program in January 2007 and completed the first year of basic sciences at Northumbria University in Newcastle, UK.
Distinguished guest and Assistant Dean of the Keith B. Taylor Global Scholars Program, Dr. David Holmes, BSc (Hons), PhD, CSci, FIBMS, was honored with St. George’s University Medal of Merit by the Chancellor Modica during the ceremony. The medal was presented in recognition of Dr. Holmes’ contribution and tireless efforts towards the collaboration between St. George’s and Northumbria University and the development of the KBTGSP.
In his introductory remarks, Provost Dr. Allen Pensick, PhD provided wise and encouraging words, “You will be stretched in many different directions through your career and you must rely on your core values to guide you.” Chancellor Charles R. Modica, JD followed Dr. Pensick by asking the graduates to stand up and applaud their families and friends in order to demonstrate their appreciation for all the support offered by the guests in attending the day’s event as well as supporting their dream to become a physician. He also reminded the graduating class of the importance of the commencement ceremony. “This moment celebrates the commitment you have made to medicine. Your dedication is commendable, and we are confident you can make a positive impact in your local communities and in a global context.”
Her Excellency Dr. Dessima Williams, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Permanent Representative of Grenada to the United Nations, also extended her congratulations to the School of Medicine Class of 2011, which included seven Grenadian graduates. She challenged them to make health care strong with their entry into the professional world. Additionally, she highlighted efforts by the United Nations to eradicate AIDS by 2020 through “zero new infections, zero stigma and zero Aids-related deaths”—a goal revealed at the United Nations Aids Summit held the same week.
The 44th School of Medicine Commencement Ceremony concluded upon closing remarks from the Dean of the School of Medicine Dean Stephen Weitzman, MD. Graduates, along with their families and friends, took the opportunity to mingle with peers, faculty, and administration during an hour-long reception that followed.
St. George’s University is extremely proud of its newest alumni who will now join the ranks of the University’s more than 9,000 medical graduates licensed in all 50 states and practicing in more than 45 countries around the world. With a 98 percent residency placement rate, the graduates will continue their professional development in highly competitive residencies in surgery, radiology, orthopedics, emergency medicine, etc.