PA White Coat Ceremony January 2024 2

EVMS held its traditional PA White Coat Ceremony Jan. 12 for 87 new physician assistant students.

W. Travis Kirby, MPAS, PA-C, Associate Professor for the School of Health Professions, spoke of the significance of the ceremony, held at the Harrison Opera House in Norfolk.

“This White Coat Ceremony is an important tradition that welcomes loved ones and families. But for you, the student, it is a rite of passage. . .As you walk across this stage, please cherish the feeling and importance of humanism as the core of our professional duties to our future patients and our communities. As you come to receive your short white coat, my hope is that you will feel the weight of this next step and potential of what you will become.”

New student Taylor Zadai of Fredericksburg, Virginia, says she felt called to be a physician assistant.

"I have always been driven to serve my community," says Zadai. "I felt that [idea] was mirrored at EVMS, and when I came for interviews... I felt like I was home."

Following the formal coating, the PA Class of 2026 recited the Physician Assistant Professional Oath. Angela Conrad, MPA, PA-C (MPA ’05), Clinical Director and Associate Professor for the School of Health Professions, delivered closing remarks.

“Remember how you feel right now. By the looks in your eyes, I would guess that you are happy, proud, excited and maybe even a little curious about what lies ahead. I want you to remember this feeling because you should feel this way every time you put on your white coat.”

View the PA White Coat Ceremony photo gallery