On Sunday, January 6, thirty-three members of the school’s dental hygiene Class of 2014 participated in their white coat ceremony. The ceremony is considered a significant step forward in their professional education, as receiving their white lab coats are indicative of their transition into providing patient care in the school clinics.
The ceremony is held for each dental hygiene class at the beginning of the second semester of their first year in the dental hygiene program. At the end of the two-year program, students enrolled in the undergraduate dental hygiene program receive a Bachelor of Science in dental hygiene.
The ceremony program featured remarks by a number of faculty members, including Dean Jane Weintraub, Director of Dental Hygiene Programs Vickie Overman and Chair of the Department of Dental Ecology Dr. Lauren Patton. Dr. Janet Guthmiller, associate dean of academic affairs at the school, issued the keynote address.
During the ceremony, the honorees donned their new coats for the first time before reciting the dental hygienist pledge from the American Dental Hygienists Association Code of Ethics preamble. They also recited the class commitment to “promote and implement the best oral care to the public.”
“I believe that the white coat ceremony is an important part of any dental hygienists professional journey,” said Overman. “It’s a way to recognize the students for “graduating” from the classroom into caring for real patients in our clinic alongside faculty members, D.D.S. students and residents. We always enjoy being the first to bestow white coats upon our students in recognition of their professional growth.”