HATTIESBURG, MS (WLOX) - The William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine held its fifth annual White Coat Ceremony for the medical school class of 2018 on Saturday.
During the ceremony, each student was ceremonially cloaked with a white medical coat. They then took the osteopathic oath of commitment in front of faculty, family and guests.
The White Coat Ceremony symbolizes the students' promise to accept the fundamental obligations in the practice of osteopathic medicine. Those obligations include excellence in science, compassion and leading a life of uprightness and honor.
Osteopathic medicine is the method of treating the body by improving its natural functions rather than using medication.
The new class consists of 108 students selected from an applicant pool of 2,442. The average age in this class is 25, but students range in age from 18 to 45. The class includes 66 men and 42 women.
The majority of students in the program are from the Gulf South region of the United States. However, many states were represented from California to New York.
WUCOM is the second medical school in Mississippi, and is the only osteopathic medical school in the state. The program received full accreditation from the American Osteopathic Association's Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation in 2014. The program's inaugural class graduated in 2014.
The annual White Coat Ceremony welcomes students into the program and also welcomes students to WCU.