On Friday, May 10, the medical school hosted ceremonies for the M.D. graduating students as well as its other advanced degree graduates.
The events represent the culmination of years of hard work for students like Aida Nourbakhsh, M’19, who held the Dr. Arthur Kirschbaum Memorial Scholarship for four years. She says the partial scholarship was a tremendous help to her family, who emigrated from Iran when she was 16.
Both she and her mother went to work immediately after moving to the U.S., and her mother even worked three jobs to help Aida save the money needed to apply to medical schools.
“Imagine our relief,” Aida says, “when I learned I’d been awarded the Kirschbaum Scholarship! My mother has only had to work one job while I’ve been in medical school. The scholarship has also given me the opportunity to keep my debt low.” That, she says, gives her the freedom to pursue a career in academic medicine. “I don’t have to worry about paying off a high debt load.” She will begin an otolaryngology residency this summer at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Florida.
"My ambitions and my mother's sacrifices may have paved the initial way but with the financial support of my scholarship and the mentorship that I received from the faculty during my education I was able to pursue my dream of becoming a physician scientist."
At the M.D. Convocation and Hooding Ceremony, this year's keynote speaker was world-renowned patient safety champion Peter Pronovost, M.D., Ph.D. Chief clinical transformation officer at University Hospitals health system in northeast Ohio, his work on leveraging checklists to reduce catheter-related bloodstream infections has saved thousands of lives, reducing by 80 percent infections that used to kill as many people as breast or prostate cancer.
The graduating class also heard from Class President Kathryn Gouthro, M'19, who encouraged her classmates to remember the challenges and successes of medical school. She will begin a family medicine residency this summer at Madigan Army Medical Center. Along with three fellow classmates, she participated in a military commissioning ceremony that was part of convocation this year.
Advanced Degree Recognition Ceremony
Graduation weekend also marked the conclusion of training for students with advanced degrees, including 46 who earned doctoral degrees, 77 who earned master's and 85 certificate graduates.
During their doctoral studies, the Ph.D. graduates have published a total of 160 articles. (And counting!)
Meet some of this year's graduates