Student Events, Celebrations, and Milestones

Four years of medical school requires dedication and numerous sacrifices to achieve your ultimate goal.  We feel it is important to acknowledge individual accomplishments, observe certain rites of passage and achievement of major milestones.  The Office of Student Affairs sponsors a numerous special events throughout the year to provide both guidance for the next step in your journey and to celebrate successes along the way.

Two students at AOA event
students with white coats

First Year

Congratulations, you got into medical school!  There are number of events before classes start that are organized for you to get to know your classmates, learn more about the school, explore out great city and learn what to expect over the next four year.  The events culminate with White Coat ceremony where you are officially welcomed into the medical profession.

  • Welcome Weekend (May)
    An initial opportunity to meet your classmates and enjoy a day full of activities and information on housing, roommates, the curriculum, financial aid, student life, student organizations, and socializing.
  • Family Chat (July)
    A session for parents, significant others and other family members on what to expect while their loved one is going through medical school.
  • White Coat Ceremony (July)
    School of Medicine faculty will greet you as you enter the medical profession. Each student receives a white coat as a concrete symbol of your new professional role. The White Coat Ceremony was initially conceived by Dr. Arnold P. Gold, a faculty member at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and today many medical schools have such a ceremony.
  • The Launch Retreat (July)
    An overnight experience filled with activities with classmates and faculty to get to know one another and get a true sense of what to expect over the next four years.
  • Orientation (July)
    Several more days of taking care of administrative tasks and requirements, i.e. textbooks, laptop check, ID badge, health insurance, passwords, etc. before classes officially start.
Three students at clinician ceremony

Second Year

  • Way to go, you survived your first year of medical school!  Keep up the hard work, this year you will be ready to take your first step exam.
  • Clinician Ceremony (February)
    The ceremony marks the transition from the traditional classroom-learning environment for the first two years of medical school into the clinical setting
Students visiting with a faculty member

Third Year

  • Finally, you get to see patients and put all that hard work to use.
  • Residency Roundup (August)
    An evening event that allows medical students an opportunity to visit 1×1 with Health Science Center alumni about the specialty fields they are interested in pursuing.
  • Career Day (February)
    Faculty from a variety of specialties attend this event and are available to meet with students individually to answer questions about applying to residency programs, career satisfaction, etc.
Student posing for picture with faculty.
Student with match results
Graduating Students

Fourth Year

  • Believe it or not, it is now time to apply to residency programs.  The later half of this year is filled with many wonderful events to prepare you for the next step and celebrations to mark the end of your four year journey.
  • Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA), National Medical Honor Society induction ceremony (March)
    Alpha Omega Alpha — dedicated to the belief that in the profession of medicine we will improve care for all by:  recognizing high educational achievement; honoring gifted teaching; encouraging the development of leaders in academia and the community; supporting the ideals of humanism; and promoting service to others.  http://alphaomegaalpha.org/index.html
  •  Gold Humanism Honor Society (GHHS) induction ceremony  (March)
    The Gold Humanism Honor Society (GHHS) recognizes students, residents and faculty who are exemplars of compassionate patient care and who serve as role models, mentors, and leaders in medicine. GHHS members are peer nominated and are the ones that others say they want taking care of their own family.  http://www.gold-foundation.org/programs/ghhs/
  •  Match Day  (March)
    A dramatic and festive rite of passage where medical students stand on stage in front of their classmates, family, friends and faculty members to open an envelope revealing where they will spend the next few years of their life for residency.  Match day is held in conjunction with the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP).
  • Senior Award Dinner  (March)
    Graduating students are honored for exceptional performance and/or service to the school of medicine during a dinner attended by Long School of Medicine faculty and leadership. 
  • Graduation (May)
    The day you have been working toward arrives!  A wonderful event to celebrate an incredible achievement.  Family, friends and loved ones attend a formal ceremony where your Doctor of Medicine degree is awarded.