The USF Health Taneja College of Pharmacy welcomed their newest future pharmacists to USF Health Sept. 15 during the Class of 2027 White Coat Ceremony at the USF Marshall Student Center.
The annual ceremony marks the occasion when students receive their first white coats and lapel pins they will wear throughout their four-year journey through pharmacy school. Additionally, it marks the day when students commit themselves to a career of dedicated compassionate patient care and life-long learning as health care professionals.
Kevin B. Sneed, PharmD, FNAP, FNPhA, dean of the Taneja College of Pharmacy and USF Health senior associate vice president of USF Health, kicked off the ceremony with some exciting updates regarding pharmacy. The most significant is the college’s move into the USF Health building in downtown Tampa where the pharmacy program will reside with the Morsani College of Medicine and Heart Institute.
“Here at the Taneja College of Pharmacy, we are forging a path of innovative discoveries with the full intention of transforming lives for the better. But, for now, we will focus all our creative innovation on the class of 2027,” Dr. Sneed said. “As you accept the responsibility of receiving the white coat, know that dozens, thousands, maybe millions of people will benefit from the time you spend transforming into the very best pharmacist clinician.”
Daniel Buffington, PharmD, MBA, FAPhA, president and practice director at Clinical Pharmacology Services, served as keynote speaker for the event. His message to the students was about the great responsibility they have as aspiring professionals and the greater responsibility they will have when they begin practicing.
“I challenge you to take every opportunity to put the most you can into it because it’s going to shape who you are when it’s time to practice. Never take the importance of the white coat for granted. Never let your patients or your colleagues down by not doing the most for them.” Dr. Buffington said.
Heather Petrelli, PharmD, MBA, TCOP assistant professor and associate dean of Student Affairs, guided the students to center-stage in groups of four to receive their first white coat.
Angela Hill, PharmD, CRPh, TCOP professor and associate dean of the Department of Clinical Affairs, led the students in reciting the Oath of Commitment.
Students, faculty, families, and friends capped off the Friday evening festivities with a small reception and family photos.