Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar (WCM-Q) celebrated the graduation of the Class of 2021 with 41 new doctors, bringing the total number of physicians from the institution to 463, since its inception in 2001.

The WCM-Q Class of 2021 comprises 30 women and 11 men, hailing from 13 countries. During the virtual ceremony held this Wednesday, 5 May, the students recited the Hippocratic Oath and were presented with their MD degrees by WCM-Q Dean Dr Javaid Sheikh.

SEE ALSO: WCM-Q Class of 2021 Virtual Graduation Ceremony

The Class of 2021 is the 14th graduating class in WCM-Q’s history and the second to have completed the college’s innovative six-year medical programme, which comprises both pre-medical and medical curriculums.

Dr Sheikh praised the graduates’ dedication to their studies and their commitment to the measures put in place to limit the spread of coronavirus.

I am grateful to each and every one of you for stepping up to this challenge, to my colleagues in the faculty and to the staff of the WCM-Q, and to the wider Education City community, for providing essential support in these very trying conditions.

He wished all the graduates the very best as they go forward to embrace more challenges.

Keynote address by Dr Anthony Fauci

Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health and US President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser for COVID-19 Dr Anthony Fauci was the keynote speaker. He congratulated the graduates of the Class of 2021.

As we navigate year two of the global pandemic of COVID-19, I am keenly aware that celebrating this important milestone of your lives under the constraints of this pandemic is, at best, disappointing.

However, he said that we all must adapt to this extraordinary situation and unite to meet its challenges. He also said that when this pandemic began its sweep around the globe more than a year ago, it quickly hobbled hospitals and imposed crushing levels of stress and strain on medical staffs.

As you move into the next stage of your medical careers, regardless of your medical speciality, now more than ever we will need your talent, your energy, your resolve, and your character to restore and preserve the health of our world.

Student speakers Raihan El-Naas and Lolwa Al-Theyab

Raihan El-Naas
Raihan El-Naas
Lolwa Al-Theyab
Lolwa Al-Theyab

Student speaker Raihan El-Naas said that the dream of becoming a doctor had sustained the students during the lockdown.

Each of us has dreams and our ultimate dream is to become experienced doctors, doctors of great knowledge who treat their patients with kindness and mercy. I hope with all my heart that our dreams come true, that we treat our patients by day and by night, and that we become a source of consolation in their grief, strength in their weakness, and hope in their despair.

Her fellow graduate and student speaker Lolwa Al-Theyab spoke of the moral obligation of physicians to always maintain empathy with patients.

If there’s one piece of advice I can give our future selves, it’s to keep holding our patients’ hands, to keep listening to their stories – to maintain that empathy.

The role of university marshal was performed by Dr James Roach, Associate Dean for Pre-medical Education and Professor of Chemistry.

Making a difference

Alongside Dr Sheikh for the presentation of candidates and conferment of the MD degree was Dr Thurayya Arayssi, professor of Clinical Medicine and senior associate dean for Medical Education and Continuing Professional Development.

The graduation ceremony also heard from Dr Augustine Choi, Dean of Weill Cornell Medicine in New York, who said that there are so many opportunities to make an impact – in Qatar, in your countries of origin and around the world.

This past year has shown us that health is precious, and as graduates of Weill Cornell Medicine-Qatar, you have the tools to make a difference wherever you choose to focus your energies.

For updates and more information about WCM-Q, visit qatar-weill.cornell.edu

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