White Coat Ceremony

White Coat Ceremony, Class of 2013

White Coat Ceremony, Class of 2013

Washington State University, College of Veterinary Medicine welcomed the Class of 2013 to the Veterinary Medical Profession at the 11th Annual Convocation, also known as the White Coat Ceremony on Friday, August 21, 2009.

History of the White Coat Ceremony

The White Coat Ceremony, established by Dr. Arnold Gold at Columbia University Medical School in 1993, was designed to impress upon students, physicians and the public the important symbolic role of the white coat in patient-doctor interactions. Gold argued that students were reciting the Hippocratic Oath four years too late-upon their graduation from medical school. He felt the oath and the conferring of white coats would be better done at the start of medical school, when students receive their first exposure to clinical medicine. The White Coat Ceremony provides a mechanism by which values that are key to our profession can be openly articulated and carefully considered in the company of peers, parents, partners and faculty.

The College of Veterinary Medicine has embraced the spirit of this exercise. You will find that our ceremony has been appropriately modified for veterinary medical students. It includes an induction into the Veterinary Medical College, whereupon each student will receive a coat, generously donated by the Idaho and Washington State Veterinary Medical Associations. As a group, the students recite a "Veterinary Student Oath."

Program Dignitaries

Dr. Bryan Slinker, Dean, College of Veterinary Medicine
Dr. Dave Rustebakke, Representative for Idaho Veterinary Medical Association
Dr. Barry Watson, Hill’s Pet Nutrition
Dr. Peter Anderson, Keynote Speaker
Dr. Patricia Talcott, Director of Admissions
Dr. Doug Jasmer, Associate Dean
Dr. Steve Simasko, Chair, IPN
Dr. David Prieur, Chair, VMP
Dr. William Dernell, Chair, VCS
Dr. Rick DeBowes, Associate Dean, Development and External Relations

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Peter Anderson
Presentation of the DVM Class: Dr. Patricia Talcott: Director of Admissions
Presentation of White Coats: Dr. Doug Jasmer: Associate Dean & Dr. William Dernell: Chair, Veterinary Clinical Sciences
Veterinary Student Oath: Dr. William Dernell: Chair, Veterinary Clinical Sciences

Keynote Address by Dr. Peter G. Anderson

Dr. Peter G. AndersonDr. Peter Anderson is a Professor of Pathology, Director of Pathology Undergraduate Education, and Pre-Clerkship Curriculum Coordinator of the medical curriculum at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Medicine in Birmingham, Alabama. Dr. Anderson and his three older brothers grew up about 120 miles south of Pullman in Wallowa, Oregon where his father served as the Episcopal minister for the county. He received his Bachelors degree from University of Washington and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine. After veterinary school Peter was selected to participate in a Human and Comparative Pathology Residency Training Program at the University Of Alabama School Of Medicine, where he studied human pathology and learned about using animal models to study human diseases. He went on to obtain his PhD in Experimental Cardiovascular Pathology at the UAB. Dr. Anderson has been on the faculty at UAB since 1986 and has been actively involved in research related to cardiac hypertrophy, atherosclerosis and intravascular stents.

Dr. Anderson has been actively involved in teaching medical, dental, optometry and graduate students. He has received numerous teaching awards from these various student groups throughout his career. He also holds leadership positions with the National Board of Medical Examiners, the International Association of Medical Science Educators, the Undergraduate Medical Educators, and the Group for Research in Pathology Education. Dr. Anderson and his colleagues developed the Pathology Education Instructional Resource Website that has over 40,000 digital pathology, histology and radiology images, as well as other medical education digital resources. He was recently selected as the best basic science educator out of all the medical schools in the US and Canada. He received the 2008 Alpha Omega Alpha Robert J. Glaser Distinguished Teacher Award which honors faculty members who have distinguished themselves in medical student education. He was also selected as the 2009 recipient of the Ellen Gregg Ingalls/UAB National Alumni Society Award for Lifetime Achievement in Teaching.

Dr. Anderson, his wife and two teen aged sons live in Birmingham where his sons play football and lacrosse. They relax during visits to the white sands and emerald waters of the Gulf Coast and occasional trips back out West for snow skiing and visiting relatives.

Veterinary Student Oath (adapted from the AVMA Veterinarian's Oath)

As a veterinary student in the Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine, I promise to work conscientiously to develop my scientific and medical knowledge and skills for the benefit of society through the protection of animal health, the relief of animal suffering, the conservation of animal resources, the promotion of public health, and the advancement of medical knowledge. 

Throughout my time here as a student, I will conduct myself with dignity and professionalism, and in keeping with the principles of veterinary medical ethics. I accept as a lifelong obligation the continual improvement of my professional knowledge and competence.

Washington State University