Mayo Clinic celebrated the graduation of the next generation of physicians and scientists. In a combined ceremony in Rochester, Minnesota, on Friday, May 19, students received degrees conferred by Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine and Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. Fifty-five new physicians joined the prestigious Mayo Clinic alumni, with 11 receiving both medical and doctoral degrees and 38 new biomedical scientists receiving doctoral degrees. In addition, 22 students received master's degrees.
They join the more than 45 other Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine students in Jacksonville, Florida, and Phoenix graduating on those campuses in May. These students persevered through the pandemic, learning health care in a rapidly changing environment. They persevered through the pandemic, learning health care in a rapidly changing environment. The students will move on to residencies at Mayo Clinic and across the country, helping ease the physician shortage and becoming future health care leaders.
"Today we celebrate the future of health care — those who have dedicated their careers to the practice of medicine, research and education," says Fredric Meyer, M.D., Waugh Executive Dean of Education and dean of the medical school, Mayo Clinic. "As you graduate and go out into the world, you have the responsibility to care for patients and carry forth Mayo Clinic values to advance the betterment of society, instilled throughout your training. My advice is to do good, make the world a little better."
"Students, today we celebrate you," says Stephen Ekker, Ph.D., dean of Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. "I am confident of two key points: First, that you have completed and developed an amazing core of scientific training that will be foundational for your future. And second, that you will inspire all of us with what you will achieve next."
Graduates have worked side by side with world-renowned experts at Mayo Clinic to create new ways to address patients' future needs and lead positive change in medicine. They will lead innovative and transformative efforts in health care, and apply knowledge to develop creative solutions for some of the most complex problems facing patients and health systems today.
The commencement ceremony featured a student speaker from each school. Connor Walsh, M.D., was the student speaker from Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine, and as a soon-to-be physician, he emphasized the guiding values they were taught. "I hope we all carry with us the principles we learned," he says. "Teamwork and humility are the keys to providing excellent patient care while ensuring our personal success and longevity in medicine. And that above all other things, the needs of the patient must come first."
The student speaker from Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, Bradley Bowles, Ph.D., conducted research to develop new ways to diagnose rare disease patients through bioinformatics. "Today isn’t about finishing grants or working on papers, or that endless struggle to research the unknown," he says. "Today is instead a chance to look back and recognize how much we've truly accomplished — to take one of those rare moments to pause and catch our breath and celebrate just how far we've really come."
Dawn Mussallem, D.O., was the keynote speaker. Three months into medical school, Dr. Mussallem was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. In 2021, she was a heart transplant recipient. At commencement, she shared her journey to become a physician, her health care experiences, finding purpose in caring for others and how changing your mindset can be powerful. "The human experience is going to include struggles, defeats, hardship and adversity, but we must not succumb to this," she says. "In fact, it may be necessary to encounter defeat so we can get to know who we are, what we can overcome and somehow miraculously rise. Let it guide you to discover personal strength, new possibilities and a deep focus on purpose."
Dr. Mussallem is a consultant in the Division of Hematology Oncology at Mayo Clinic and an assistant professor of medicine. Dr. Mussallem is internationally known in the fields of breast medicine and lifestyle medicine.
Journalist: Broadcast-quality video can be found in the downloads at the end of the post. Please courtesy: "Mayo Clinic News Network."
About Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine
Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine is a national medical school with four-year medical degree programs in Rochester and Arizona. The school also offers a Florida program, enabling students to complete their first two years of medical studies in Arizona or Minnesota, and their final two years of learning in Florida. For more information, visit Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine.
About Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences offers world-class graduate education leading to Ph.D. and M.D.-Ph.D. degrees, as well as master's degree programs. The school offers research opportunities on campuses in Arizona, Florida and Minnesota, with training by leading investigators and clinicians in cutting-edge biomedical fields. For more information, visit Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.
About Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit organization committed to innovation in clinical practice, education and research, and providing compassion, expertise and answers to everyone who needs healing. Visit the Mayo Clinic News Network for additional Mayo Clinic news.