PCOM Georgia held its annual commencement ceremony on May 23, graduating 283 physicians, pharmacists, physical therapists, physician assistants, biomedical scientists and medical laboratory scientists.
The pomp and circumstance were elevated as students processed into the auditorium to the accompaniment of a bagpipe and snare drum. The grand ballroom at the Gas South Convention Center was filled with loved ones who witnessed their students crossing the stage to receive their diplomas and hoods.
Julie Ginn Moretz, the chief experience officer and the assistant vice president of patient- and family- centered health care at the Augusta University Health System, delivered the keynote address. Moretz asked the graduates “What would health care look like if patients designed it?”
Once the self-described scared young mother of a newborn diagnosed with three major life-threatening heart defects, Moretz has worked tirelessly to transform the culture of health care so that the hospital experience is more patient-and family-centered.
As the first volunteer chair of the Patient/Family Advisory Council at AU Health, Moretz partnered with hospital leaders to develop a nationally recognized patient- and family- centered program which led to a position as a hospital director.
“It’s about keeping patients and families together and including them in the care plan and decision-making process,” she said.
Moretz reminded the students that “words matter. Your patients will memorize the words you say.”
A final lesson Moretz conveyed to the graduates is that “you can’t save everyone but you can always share your passion and compassion.”
Jay S. Feldstein, DO ’81, president and CEO of Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, addressed the graduates. He said, “I encourage you to harness the power of change. Commit to leaving things better than you found them. There is no limit to your capacity for greatness.”
The Class of 2023 is made up of 109 DOs, 76 pharmacists, 39 physical therapists, 30 physician assistants, 27 biomedical scientists and two medical laboratory scientists.
To watch a live stream of the ceremony, click here.
About PCOM Georgia
Established in 2005, PCOM Georgia is a private, not-for-profit, accredited institute of higher education dedicated to the healthcare professions. The Suwanee, Georgia, campus is affiliated with Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, a premier osteopathic medical school with a storied history. Emphasizing “a whole person approach to care,” PCOM Georgia focuses on educational excellence, interprofessional education and service to the community. pcom.edu/georgia
SOURCE Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine