New Beginnings In Medicine: The White Coat Ceremony

In all walks of life, there marks a pinnacle called the beginning. Xavier’s Pre-Pharmacy students have worked long and hard hours to maintain and even surpass the requirements placed upon them to make it to this very important moment. The White Coat Ceremony. This ceremony marks the shift from undergrad, Pre-Pharmacy, to professional Pharmacy students. This is the transitioning point for the next generation of Healthcare leaders. The White Coat Ceremony symbolizes a prominent shift in status, responsibility, and leadership, as our fellow Xavier students rise to meet the occasion. 

The ceremony kicked off with a humbling embrace by P1 Class Vice President, Maliah Mayweather, who introduced our keynote speaker, Dr. Philecia Avery. Dr.Avery graduated with the class of 1997 and is apart of the College of Pharmacy’s Advisory Board. She also is the founder of Philecia Dayle LLC. One of the most potent quotes that Dr. Avery shared was “there are people who make it happen, there are people that watch it happen then there are those who wonder what happened.” Her words resonated with the crowd. This qued the applause into the next speaker, P1 class President Andre Nguyen who had comic, but heartfelt remarks for his fellow peers as they transition into Professionals. Next was the Class Representatives, Mr. & Ms. P1, who braced the stage for the ceremony to commence. Once the P1 Class Advisor, Dr. Chyla Stanton-Robinson, took the stage, P1 students eagerly lined up prepared to make the transition. Each student brimming with excitement, stood in front of a professor until it was time to get coated. Once all of the P1’s had their coats they were led into the pledge of professionalism by the Pharmacy Student Association President, Ryan Norton. Following that Professor and Dean, Dr. Kathleen B. Kennedy acknowledged current Pharmacy students who received 4.0’s assuring the new P1’s that it is possible.  Dr. Kennedy also acknowledged prospective pharmacy students who are apart of Xavier’s Contingent Admit Program or CAP. CAP is a program for Pre-Pharmacy majors who have achieved at least a 23 on the ACT and have maintained a minimum GPA of 3.3 on the 4.0 scale. Closing remarks were led by Provost, Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Anne McCall, and Dr. Kennedy.

Following the ceremony, a few of the newly coated P1’s were interviewed. When asked about their feelings during the ceremony and how they felt about their newly acquired white coats most of them replied with a mix of relief, anxiety, Nervousness, but mostly excitement. 


“I am finally able to step into the first chapter of my career as a pharmacist. I am now able to take the classes necessary to obtain my career goals”



“I finally made it! It has been a long-enduring journey and this is the start of a new career. I can help my community, follow my dreams, and see where life takes me”

 “All I can say is finally when they put it on me I felt like I deserved it”


CAP students who went to the White Coat ceremony replied:

“I thought the ceremony was great. It gave me something to look forward to. The excitement in the room is unmatched. Graduation must be unbelievable to watch. Seeing the P1’s get their whites coats motivates me to do my best these next two years. The entire ceremony I was imagining myself getting my white coat.”



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