Annual Events

White Coat Ceremony

Congratulations and Welcome Class of 2022!

What: Class of 2022 White Coat Ceremony

When: Friday, July 27, 2018 from 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.

Where: Centennial Hall

The White Coat Ceremony calls on students to incorporate the humanistic ideals of medicine in their future care of patients. Each year, approximately 115 outstanding scholars have the honor of joining one of the most prestigious and leading medical institutions in the country when they are formally welcomed as the University of Arizona’s newest class of medical students at the annual White Coat Ceremony. These students will become a part of the legacy of thousands of alumni whose contributions to medical science have resulted in advances that have expanded the boundaries of knowledge, alleviated untold suffering, and saved the lives of countless individuals.

Our new medical students gather in the presence of their families, guests, faculty members and college leaders to formally receive the cloak of their future profession: the white coat.  This event marks each student's entry into clinical medicine — a milestone in the education of a medical student.

The Arnold P. Gold Foundation, a public foundation dedicated to fostering humanism in medicine, furnishes each White Coat participant with a pin that symbolizes a shared commitment to providing compassionate and competent patient care. These pins are placed on the coats prior to the ceremony.

History of the White Coat Ceremony

The Arnold P. Gold Foundation designed the White Coat Ceremony to welcome entering medical students and help them to establish a psychological contract for the practice of medicine.

The White Coat Ceremony was initiated on August 20, 1993 at the Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons. In 1994, New Jersey Medical School held its first annual White Coat Ceremony, becoming the nation’s second medical school to do so. Grants from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation in 1996 and 1997 made widespread advocacy of this celebratory and solemn event possible. Currently, a White Coat Ceremony or similar rite of passage takes place at 96% of AAMC-accredited schools of medicine in the United States, as well as at osteopathic schools of medicine and at schools abroad in Antigua, Australia, Canada, The Dominican Republic, Grenada, Haiti, Israel, Japan, Lebanon, The Netherlands, Pakistan, Qatar, and South Korea.

At the ceremony, students are welcomed by respected leaders who represent the value system of the school and the new profession the students are about to enter. The cloaking with the white coat—the mantle of the medical profession—is a hands-on experience that underscores the bonding process. It is personally placed on each student's shoulders by individuals who believe in the students' ability to carry on the noble tradition of doctoring. It is a personally delivered gift of confidence and compassion.

Many of us have been working together to help make this a memorable occasion, and we hope that you’ll join us as a community to celebrate our humanistic commitment to the study and practice of medicine.

General information and assistance

Please call the Office of Student Affairs at (520) 626-6216 if you have questions about the White Coat Ceremony or Reception.

Staff and student volunteers will be available the day of the event to answer questions and offer assistance.  These volunteers will be wearing either red shirts with the College of Medicine logo or black shirts with "College of Medicine Events Staff' in white on the back.  Please feel free to stop any of them for information or to introduce yourselves.

Please be aware that there is a bag check policy at Centennial Hall upon entry, so please plan your arrival accordingly.

Please note: The White Coat Ceremony is Webcast live, videotaped, photographed, and recorded. Your attendance at White Coat confirms your willingness to appear in Webcasts, videotapes, photographs, and recordings and releases The University of Arizona from all liability in connection therewith.