FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                       Orla Moloney
August 19, 2022                                                                                                   Public Relations Manager

215-871-6334 (office)

610-858-7719 (cell)

On Thursday, August, 18, PCOM hosted the 25th Annual White Coat Ceremony for first-year students in the physician assistant studies class of 2024. Each year, the white coat ceremony establishes a contract for beginning students that stresses the importance of compassionate care for patients, as well as scientific proficiency.

“The white coat ceremony represents a transition from a student, concentrating on yourself, to a concentration on the patient. The white coat is about patient care, putting the patient first. You are in a service profession, here to take care of patients. If you put the patient first, everything else takes care of itself,” shared Jay Feldstein, DO `81, PCOM’s president and CEO, who spoke during the ceremony.

Jency Boyce, MS/PA `22, a recent alumna of the physician assistant studies program, also spoke during the white coat ceremony. Ms. Boyce reflected on her experience in PCOM’s physician assistant studies program and shared words of advice with the class. In addressing the first-year students and their families, Ms. Boyce shared, “Enjoy this moment for what it is and celebrate it. The road ahead is undoubtedly arduous, but it will be completely worth it.”

Laura Levy, DHCS, PA-C, chair of the PCOM Department of Physicians Assistant Studies, and Gregory McDonald, DO `89, dean of the PCOM School of Health Sciences, also spoke during the ceremony. The class also recited the Oath for Physician Assistant Students before their friends and loved ones, thus publicly declaring their intent to practice medicine with conscience and dignity.

When asked what the white coat ceremony meant to her, Rylee Booth (MS/PA `24) shared, “This day is so exciting because it marks the transition from being an undergraduate student, taking anatomy and physiology, to our clinical education and being a future provider.” 

Each member of the class received their white coats, which are endowed by the Sara Somers Rupert, RN ’33 White Coat Fund. The fund, started by M. Kimberly Rupert, PhD, and her mother, Sara, has supplied the white coats and books for the PA Studies program since 2002.

Students and their families gathered at the Hilton Philadelphia City Avenue to celebrate this important step in their medical careers.  This year’s ceremony was also live-streamed on YouTube.

About Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine

Founded in 1899, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) has trained thousands of highly competent, caring physicians, health practitioners and behavioral scientists who practice a “whole person” approach to care—treating people, not just symptoms. PCOM operates three campuses (PCOM, PCOM Georgia and PCOM South Georgia) and offers doctoral degrees in clinical psychology, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy and school psychology, and graduate degrees in biomedical sciences, forensic medicine, mental health counseling, organizational development and leadership, physician assistant studies, school psychology, and public health management and administration. PCOM  students learn the importance of health promotion, research, education and service to the community. Through its community-based Healthcare Centers, PCOM provides care to medically underserved populations. For more information, visit or call 215-871-6100.