COVID-19 Restrictions and Safety Guidelines
Thank you for joining us in person on this joyous occasion!
To help ensure the health and safety of yourselves and those around you, we respectfully ask that you do the following:
- Face coverings are highly recommended.
- Social distancing is optional for fully vaccinated individuals, and highly recommended for individuals who are not fully vaccinated or who have weakened immune systems.
- Adhere to the seating arrangements set by event staff.
If you have tested positive for COVID-19, and are waiting for COVID-19 test results, have COVID-19 symptoms, or if they have had close contact with a person who has tested positive for or who has symptoms of COVID-19. We respectfully ask that you stay home.
For more information about COVID-19 and prevention tips, please visit our COVID-19 Resource Center.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is White Coat Ceremony?
The White Coat Ceremony serves as a rite of passage for medical students and was created by the Arnold P. Gold Foundation in 1993. During the ceremony, a white coat is placed on each student’s shoulders and often the Hippocratic Oath is recited, signifying their entrance into the medical profession.
How can I watch the UTRGV School of Medicine White Coat Ceremony?
The UTRGV School of Medicine white coat ceremony will be livestreamed on the UTRGV.edu/SOMLive website, as well as the school’s YouTube page. The ceremony livestream will begin at 10:00 a.m. CST. You can watch the online ceremony from your computer, laptop, smartphone, or tablet with internet connection.
Recommended web browsers to use for viewing: Chrome, Firefox and Safari – not Internet Explorer.
Can my family and friends watch the livestream ceremony?
Yes! They can join at the same link: UTRGV.edu/SOMLive website.
If I can't join at 10:00 a.m., will the ceremony be available to watch at a later time?
Will the ceremony be shared on social media?
Yes, the ceremony will also be shared on the UTRGV School of Medicine Facebook Page. Show your support on social media! Connect with the UTRGV School of Medicine and share special moments by using #SOMWhiteCoat21.
Can I request extra guest seats?
No. Guest seating will be set up in cohorts of 4 chairs, with 6-feet social distancing in-between. Therefore, each student will receive four seat reservations for their guests and will not be able to request additional seats. The limit per student is to allow sufficient space so that all cohorts can be physically and socially distanced.
Can I give my guest seats to another student?
No. Giving your allocated seats to another student would result in guests from two different households interacting in close proximity, increasing the risk of COVID-19 transmission. Therefore, to promote a safe experience for everyone and avoid exposing themselves and their loved ones, students are strongly encouraged to use their assigned four seats to invite guests from their same household and refrain from giving their allocated seats to other students.
Why do you need my guests’ contact information?
In the unfortunate event of COVID-19 exposure, our safety experts will need to contact tracing and notify those in attendance of the potential risk. Send this information to MDStudentaffairs@utrgv.edu no later than Wednesday, July 21, 2021, 5 p.m. CST.
Do my children under 10 years old need a ticket?
Yes. All guests from 0 years and up must have a designated seat to enter the ceremony.
Do I have to wear a face-covering?
Per UTRGV protocols, face coverings are optional inside university buildings and outdoors. However, for individuals who are not fully vaccinated or who have weakened immune systems, face coverings are highly recommended inside university buildings, except when alone in a private office or single-occupancy space.
Do I have to maintain socially distanced from other guests who vaccinated before and after the ceremony?
Per UTRGV protocols, social distancing is optional for fully vaccinated individuals and highly recommended for individuals who are not fully vaccinated or have weakened immune systems. In addition, the university will transition all space types to 100% occupancy using a phased approach for the Fall semester. For questions, please get in touch with EHSRM@UTRGV.EDU.
For additional questions regarding the White Coat Ceremony, please contact the following:
Office of Student Affairs
Phone: (956) 296-1596
Phone: (956) 296-1438
Phone: (956) 296-1445
Dean, School of Medicine
Michael B. Hocker, MD, MHS
Dean, UTRGV School of Medicine
2021 Keynote Speaker
Julie A. Freischlag, MD, FACS
Dean, Wake Forest School of Medicine