The Hofstra Northwell School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies recently celebrated the white coat ceremony of its second class of 45 nurse practitioner students who will transition to the clinical phase of their education this fall.
The students, who have completed one year of study in a three-year Master’s program, received a white coat and pin as a symbol of their pledge to grow as compassionate healthcare professionals. They will begin their clinical training at various Northwell Health hospitals and facilities this month.
“The white coat marks the beginning of a lifelong professional journey that begins with the students’ transition from learning in the classroom to training in actual healthcare settings,” said Dean Kathleen Gallo, PhD, MBA, RN, FAAN, who welcomed students and guests to the ceremony in The Helene Fortunoff Theater, Monroe Lecture Hall. “It symbolizes the commitment nurse practitioners make every day to provide empathetic, patient-centered care.”
During the ceremony, the students recited an original oath written by the program’s inaugural class, who received their white coats last year and are slated to graduate in May 2018. Several members of the first class also took part in the ceremony by pinning students as they donned their coats and crossed the stage.
“Our first cohort’s enthusiastic involvement in this milestone emphasizes the collaboration, inclusion and peer support we see daily among our students,” Dean Gallo said.
The School of Graduate Nursing and Physician Assistant Studies was recently awarded a $1 million gift for student scholarships from Barbara and Donald Zucker, whose generous philanthropy was recently recognized with the naming of the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell.
The three-year, part-time program leads to a Master of Science degree in nursing as a family nurse practitioner, adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner, or psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner. In addition to nursing, the school houses Hofstra University’s two existing programs in Physician Assistant Studies – a dual degree BS/MS program and a graduate program. The programs are designed to meet the increasing demand for qualified nurse practitioners and physician assistants to deliver community-based care.