Virtual Community Celebration held in honor of the Class of 2020
Although it looked a little different this year, the Class of 2020 gathered together to celebrate their achievements at the seventh annual Augusta University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership Community Celebration on Saturday, May 9. Thirty-four students, along with their friends and family, joined virtually on Zoom for this momentous occasion.
In past years, students and faculty gathered in person for a ceremony and reception to celebrate with family and friends, but plans were altered this year due to growing concerns over the COVID -19 pandemic and requirements for social distancing.
The ceremony began with a slide show featuring pictures from the Class of 2020 throughout their time in medical school. This was followed by welcoming remarks by Campus Dean, Dr. Michelle Nuss. Medical Partnership student, Dr. Matthew Schwartz was selected by his fellow classmates to provide the Moment of Reflection speech on behalf of the Class of 2020.
Medical Partnership faculty member, Dr. Howard Cohen, provided the keynote address at the Community Celebration. He was selected by the Class of 2020 for this honor and provided sound advice for the graduates.
Two special awards were given at the ceremony. The first was the Amarachi Anukam Community Service Award given in memory of one of the Medical Partnership’s outstanding students. This award was presented to Dr. Matthew Schwartz in recognition of his vast amount of community service he has completed while attending the Medical Partnership campus. The second award was the Educator of the Year award presented to Medical Partnership faculty member, Dr. Carrie Kelly.
The ceremony concluded with the presentation of the class gift and closing remarks by Dr. Ben Daniel, the class president. Dr. Daniel has served as class president for all four years of medical school.
Following graduation, the Medical College of Georgia students attending the Medical Partnership campus will be going to 18 different states in 18 different specialties. 62 percent will stay in the southeastern United States, and 54 percent will attend primary care residencies.