Cooper Medical School of Rowan Univerisity
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White Coat Ceremony - Class of 2021

Event Details
Friday, September 15, 2017
4 p.m.
Pfleeger Concert Hall at Wilson Hall
Rowan University
North Campus Drive
Glassboro, NJ  08028

Each student may bring up to four guests to this special event. There will be no invitations or RSVPs.

Students must arrive at Pfleeger Concert Hall by 1:45 p.m.  Doors will open for event guests at 3 p.m. -- one hour before the start of the ceremony.

Students, staff and White Coat Ceremony guests may park in Lot C or Lot D.  It is a short walk from these lots to Pfleeger Concert Hall/Wilson Hall.  For guests who need special assistance, Rowan Public Safety will use golf carts to shuttle guests. Guests who require special needs parking should contact Jenene Thomas at

The White Coat Ceremony typically runs 90-120 minutes.  A reception with light refreshments on the Wilson Patio will immediately follow the White Coat Ceremony.

Directions to Rowan University
Directions to Pfleeger Concert Hall/Wilson Hall
Printable Rowan campus map

Important Information for Students

• Arrival Time: Students, Advisory College Directors, and other CMSRU personnel participating in the event should arrive at Pfleeger Concert Hall by 1:45 p.m. Upon arrival, students should check in with Event Staff. Students will be lined up alphabetically within their Advisory Colleges for this event.
• Rehearsal: Rehearsal begins PROMPTLY at 2 p.m. This is a complicated event with many moving parts, so it is imperative that all who are participating in the White Coat Ceremony arrive on time.
• Lunch: A boxed lunch will be provided to all students participating in the White Coat Ceremony. Lunches will be distributed at Noon (dismissal time) in the Learning Commons.
• Transportation: CMSRU will provide a bus to Rowan University FOR STUDENTS ONLY.  Students’ guests will not be permitted to ride on the bus.  The bus will depart CMSRU at 1 p.m.  The return bus will depart Rowan University at 6:30 p.m. Please contact the Student Affairs office to reserve your seat.
• Attire: Students should wear professional attire to the White Coat Ceremony. Women are encouraged to avoid high heels. Men are urged to wear dress pants, shirts and ties. Suit jackets should NOT be worn.

About the Keynote Speaker

Edward D. Viner, MD
Professor of Medicine, Senior Advisor to the Dean, &
Honorary First Dean
Cooper Medical School of Rowan University

Dr. Edward Viner is an esteemed physician, researcher, educator and scholar. He is honorary first dean, professor of medicine, and a board member at Cooper Medical School of Rowan University.  Dr. Viner has earned recognition as a humanistic physician, and serves as a role model and mentor for faculty and students, alike.

A cum laude graduate of Harvard College, Dr. Viner earned his medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, where he was elected to the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society. He completed an internal medicine residency and hematology/oncology fellowship at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.

For 22 years, Dr. Viner worked at Pennsylvania Hospital, where held a variety of leadership positions. In 1975, following his own experience as a critically ill patient, he started the first hospice program in the Philadelphia region. His efforts to improve end-of-life care led to an invitation to testify before the House Select Committee on Aging in 1985.

In 1987, Dr. Viner joined Cooper University Hospital as chief of medicine, a position he held for 20 years. Under his leadership, Cooper developed its subspecialty divisions, began its suburban expansion and became the first Philadelphia regional health system to adopt a hospitalist system for the care of inpatients.  In recognition of Dr. Viner’s many contributions, Cooper named its new 30 bed Intensive Care Unit in his honor and created the Edward D. Viner, MD Chair of Medicine. 

Dr. Viner was instrumental in the development and launching of Cooper Medical School of Rowan University in 2012. He remains active as a teacher and clinician and in creating CMSRU’s New Center for Humanism.

Dr. Viner served as physician to the Philadelphia Orchestra for 42 years and the Flyers Hockey Club for 13 years.  He’s been on numerous regional boards and currently serves on the boards of the Coriell Institute and the Knowles Science Teaching Foundation.

Dr. Viner has been the recipient of numerous awards and honors for patient care and teaching.   In 1984, he received the Philadelphia Caring Award for his leadership role in developing Hospice care. In 2007, he was elected to Mastership in the American College of Physicians.  He also received the prestigious Strittmatter Award from the Philadelphia County Medical Society in 2012, for his lifetime achievements. 

Dr. Viner and his wife, Judith, have six children and nine “wonderful” grandchildren.

About the White Coat Ceremony
Each year, Cooper Medical School of Rowan University (CMSRU) officially welcomes its first year students into the medical profession at its annual White Coat Ceremony.

During this special day, the medical students are “cloaked” in their first white coats by faculty mentors in the presence of family members, friends and medical school deans and faculty.  The poignant donning of the white coat is a symbolic event that marks students’ official entry into the medical profession, and demonstrates their commitment and dedication as they embark on their lifelong journeys.  In addition, the White Coat Ceremony is the first time new students recite the Hippocratic Oath.

White Coat Notes
A new tradition at CMSRU is the White Coat Notes initiative, which provides an opportunity to give new students hand-written messages of encouragement and congratulations while supporting the student activities fund. 

Notes are placed in the pockets of students’ jackets before they are cloaked during the ceremony.  Loved ones, fellow students, past and future mentors and colleagues, and friends are encouraged to participate in this meaningful program.  Click HERE for more information on CMSRU’s White Coat Notes.

If you have guests who cannot make the White Coat Ceremony, encourage them to watch the live stream of the event on this page beginning Friday, September 15 at 4 p.m.