ISU College of Veterinary Medicine will hold first White Coat Ceremony, Aug. 20

AMES, Iowa -- The incoming class of Iowa State University's College of Veterinary Medicine will be "coated" Friday in a White Coat Ceremony, a rite of passage common to medical professions.

The ceremony will be at 7 p.m., Aug. 20 in Benton Auditorium, Scheman Building.

Each of the 107 students of the Class of 2008 will be introduced and presented with a white coat to signify the transition from undergraduate to professional education.

This is the first year the ISU college has held the ceremony, which is a tradition in many colleges of medicine, pharmacy and veterinary medicine.

"The white coat is a universal symbol of medicine and science. Presentation of the white coat marks a first-year student's introduction to the professional curriculum of veterinary medicine," said Dr. Amanda Fales-Williams, assistant professor of veterinary pathology and chair of the event planning committee.

Each incoming student could choose a faculty member or a veterinarian mentor to present the white coat. Several students will be coated by a family member who is a veterinarian, Fales-Williams said.

In addition to the presentation of the white coats, Veterinary Medicine Dean Dr. John Thomson will give welcoming remarks. Michael Pugh, a junior in veterinary medicine and president of the Student Chapter of the American Veterinary Medicine Association will present the student address to the incoming freshmen. Dr. Rexanne Struve, president of the Iowa Veterinary Medicine Association, will introduce students to the Veterinarian's Oath. Recitation of the oath is reserved for graduate veterinarians. A reception will follow the program.