Future doctors of pharmacy put on their white coats, the first step of their professional careers

‘I believe you will make us proud’ says dean of the faculty, addressing students

Fifty-two future doctors of pharmacy took part in the sixth Faculty of Pharmacy, Nursing and Health Professions white coat ceremony, held in Kamal Nasir Hall on Saturday, April 28, 2018. 

The ceremony is a form of matriculation that marks a new stage in the academic and professional careers of doctor of pharmacy students, who will start their practical training in the pharmacies and hospitals of Palestine. 

The ceremony was attended by Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Faisal Awadallah, Dean of the Faculty of Pharmacy, Nursing and Health Professions Dr. Rania Abu Hamdah, and Chair of the Department of Pharmacy Dr. Lina Adwan. 

The students, proudly holding their coats, were greeted with the cheers and smiles of their parents, professors, and fellow colleagues. 

Awadallah, warmly greeting the students, briefly introduced attendees to the Faculty of Pharmacy, Nursing, and Health Professions, saying the nascent faculty is “rapidly evolving and taking on more responsibilities and offering more bachelor’s and master’s programs, such as the Nursing Program, the Nutrition and Dietetics Program, and the Clinical Laboratory Science Program.” 

“Today, we’re putting you on the track to become knowledgeable, expert medical professionals, capable of providing assistance wherever and whenever it’s needed,” added Awadallah, directing his speech to the students. 

Abu Hamdah outlined the students’ training, which will take place in pharmacies, both standalone and within hospitals, and private and public hospitals across the West Bank. 

“In the next weeks, you will come in contact with colleagues, doctors, and patients. It’s not going to be an easy undertaking, but I believe that you’ve acquired the necessary skills and knowledge to excel in your training and your future careers,” remarked Abu Hamdah to the future doctors of pharmacy. 

“Your coats,” she added, “come with a great deal of responsibility, but we know that you will make us, and yourselves, proud.” 

Nasim Ali Khawaja, the ceremony valedictorian, delivered a moving speech, in which she thanked her professors and fellow students, and noted that the road ahead is difficult, but the students “have got what it takes to heal and nurse the open wounds of Palestine.” 

Then, in a surprise move, students presented Adwan, chair of the department of pharmacy, with gifts, roses, and a plaque in appreciation of her efforts throughout the years. 

Finally, before the official coating ceremony began, Birzeit University’s Sanabel band played two songs, related to pharmacy, to the amusement of students and audience members. 

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