White Coat Ceremony

The White Coat Ceremony was initiated in 1993 at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons (VP&S), in collaboration with The Arnold P. Gold Foundation, and has since become a tradition at 99% of AAMC-accredited U.S. medical schools as well as schools in 19 other countries. It is an annual rite of passage for doctors-to-be to pledge a commitment to the compassionate practice of medicine.

The event marks the beginning of each medical student's career. Our ceremony creates a psychological, intellectual, and ethical contract for the profession and promotes empathy in the practice of medicine from the very start of medical training. Students are “cloaked” in their first white coat during the ceremony by one of six specially selected faculty members. Together, as a class, students recite the Class Oath for the first time, emphasizing the primacy of the doctor-patient relationship and the importance of compassion in medicine. 

  • Date: August 11, 2023
  • Time: 2:00 pm 
  • Location: Armory Track and Field Center 
  • Live Stream option: TBA