It's Not Just a Job: It's a Commitment

May 17, 2012



The New Balance Track & Field Center hosted the commencement ceremony for the College of Physicians and Surgeons on May 16, 2012. Lee Goldman, MD, dean and executive vice president of health and biomedical sciences, began by congratulating the Class of 2012 and asking them to please stand and applaud the people who were there to support them – not just on graduation day, but in their lives leading up to this moment. 

Discussing the evolution of medical practice and how quickly the art and science of medicine can change through research advances, Dr. Goldman told the students, "Not only have you learned the medical truths of today, but you are also well prepared for a lifelong learning process."

Elizabeth Nabel, MD, president of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School, gave the commencement address, focusing on the importance of pursuing excellence in both research and patient care. "Remember that health is a basic human right,” she said. "Doing so will remind you that being a doctor is a commitment to putting patients and families first in everything you do."

She also discussed the current national, and international, dialogue on health care and how it might affect the lives and careers of the graduates, describing the move toward multidisiplinary teams and noting that success will mean having "persistence, compassion, good communication skills and cultural awareness." 

Health care professionals are always "eager to serve," Nabel said. "Our voices must be heard as we advocate for better health. … We should use this current healthcare discussion and focus on medical research and discovery as laying the foundation for better health. … Speak out. What you know, what you see, what you experience can’t be ignored as the nation and the world debate the direction that health care will take."

Some interesting facts about the P&S Class of 2012:

35% took an extra year for research 

24% went abroad during their time at P&S

22% matched in a residency program at Columbia

42% are staying in New York State for their residency program

17 babies were born

19 students were married

35 triathlons/marathons completed




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