Warwick Evans Ceremony Applauds Student Achievement

Posted in GUMC Stories

MAY 17, 2014—Parents, families and friends of the 198 graduating medical students gathered for a pre-graduation ceremony to celebrate their achievements at the annual Warwick Evans Ceremony May 16.

The ceremony honors excellence in basic sciences and clinical departments, as well as exceptional achievement in academic performance, service and leadership. Professors and deans representing all academic departments presented dozens of awards.

“To all our students: when you hear your name called this evening or at commencement on Sunday, remember you are all proud sons and daughters of Georgetown,” said Howard J. Federoff, MD, PhD (new window), executive vice president for health sciences and executive dean of the School of Medicine, in his welcome remarks.

Know How to Communicate

Georgetown School of Medicine (new window) alumna Worta McCaskill-Stevens, MD, chief of the community clinical oncology program at the National Cancer Institute’s Division of Cancer Prevention, was invited to address the students and guests.

McCaskill-Stevens said that among the most valuable lessons she took from Georgetown was the importance of truly listening to patients. Despite the proliferation of technology and powerful genomic information, “at the end of the day, you need to know how to communicate with your patients,” she said.

“If you want the patient to adhere to whatever the intervention is, you need to understand his or her life, worries, culture and whatever other factors might be affecting that particular patient,” she added.

McCaskill-Stevens went on to say that the graduating students should embrace opportunities to grow in their leadership and scientific expertise.

“You awardees have already distinguished yourselves in leadership, scholarship and service. Proudly take those honors with you—these are seeds that will grow,” she said.

Savoring Accomplishment

Graduating student Jenny Van Kirk (M’14) was elected by her peers to deliver the student address. She urged her classmates to focus on their excitement and pride in their achievement, and not to dwell on any sadness.

“There is no reason to be anxious or sad. Rather we should feel accomplished for we have achieved our dream and our dream will continue as we begin the next stage of our medical careers,” Van Kirk said. “I am confident that we have all been given the tools that we need to go forth and become amazing physicians.”

To see a full list of student awardees, please click here (new window).

By Lauren Wolkoff
GUMC Communications