Graduate Student Oath

Graduate Student Oath Ceremony set for August 22

Graduate Student Oath Ceremony 2014

Incoming graduate students pursuing M.S., M.P.H., or Ph.D. degrees will participate in the Graduate Student Oath Ceremony, at 3:30 p.m. on Friday, August 22 in the conference center.

Penn State College of Medicine will welcome its incoming graduate students pursuing M.S., M.P.H.,  or Ph.D. degrees on Friday, August 22, 2014 with the Graduate Student Oath Ceremony, which will take place at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.  The inaugural oath ceremony took place on August 21, 2009.

In the presence of faculty, friends and peers, current graduate students will be invited to recite the Graduate Student Oath. Then incoming students will receive their first white laboratory coat or other academic remembrance appropriate to their degree, a symbol of their entrance into the biomedical research profession. Following the distribution of these symbols, the entering graduate students will recite the pledge to uphold the values of integrity, professionalism, and scholarship in biomedical research.

"Science has long been regarded as one of the most honorable professions, and scientists are highly respected for their informed and impartial opinions," said Michael F. Verderame, Ph.D., associate dean, graduate studies. "Yet even our profession has recently seen ethical failings that seriously erode the public's confidence in our results and expert advice. I am thrilled that our students have decided to publicly declare their desire to uphold the highest ethical values as they begin their careers. We are more confident than ever that our students will apply the education they receive from Penn State College of Medicine in whatever career they choose carrying these important values forward to the benefit of society."

Prompted by an article in Science magazine, a group of College of Medicine graduate students spent the better part of Academic Year 2009-2010 developing an oath that reflects Penn State values. "We wanted to highlight the integrity and professionalism to which our graduate students aspire," explained Rachel Lantry, 2009/2010 president, Graduate Student Association (PhD Physiology, 2010). "It was important for us to ensure that our graduate students maintain a certain level of ideals, regardless of their background, degree, or graduate program."

The College of Medicine Graduate Student Oath was recently featured in the Association of American Medical College's monthly magazine Reporter.