Einstein Celebrates Second Annual Ph.D. Convocation

On Tuesday, May 25, Einstein’s graduate program held a virtual Ph.D. convocation ceremony to celebrate the achievement of the College of Medicine’s graduate students and the mentors who worked with them on their long and challenging journey. At the annual commencement ceremony on Thursday, May 27, the graduates will receive their degree and hoods, but this event is to honor the special relationship that exists between graduate student and mentor.

The event began with remarks from Victoria Freedman, Ph.D., associate dean for graduate programs in biomedical sciences at Einstein. Noting that “graduate training is a long and arduous road,” Dr. Freedman toasted the students’ accomplishments. “We know what mighty effort it took to reach this point,” she said, “and we say a heartfelt congratulations to you on your amazing achievements.”

Then Gordon F. Tomaselli, M.D., the Marilyn and Stanley M. Katz Dean at Einstein and executive vice president and chief academic officer at Montefiore Medicine, congratulated the newly minted doctors on their achievement and remarked on their important role as scientists. “There are many lessons that we’ve learned during the pandemic, but among the most important is the significance of your work in biomedical science,” he said. “Science not only offers a deeper understanding of the natural world around us, but is essential to the health, stability, and vitality of our society and economy.”

Myles Akabas, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Medical Scientist Training Program, which results in both M.D. and Ph.D. degrees, also addressed the graduates, wishing them well on their careers: “You will be the leaders for the next generation. I have little advice except to treat all people with dignity and respect, to find challenges and opportunities that you are passionate about, and to pursue them and do great things and help make the world a better place for everyone.”

The event also featured prerecorded messages from the graduate students and their mentors, thanking each other for the singular role they’ve played in their professional lives.