Members of the Class of 2022 were honored Friday, May 13, 2022 at the Murat Theatre at Old National Centre in downtown Indianapolis. The 2020 and 2021 ceremonies were held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. IU School of Medicine leadership were joined by keynote speaker David Ansell, MD, MPH, a physician and author who is an advocate for medically underserved populations.
“Graduates, you have worked so hard to get to this day. Go save lives. Go make a difference. And while you're at it, go make a different world,” said Ansell, who is the Michael E. Kelly Presidential Professor of Internal Medicine and Senior Vice President and Associate Provost for Community Health Equity at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.
PhD graduate Alyson Essex was one of the student speakers. Essex spoke about the bias she overcame to achieve her degree and commended her fellow students on overcoming similar challenges.
“We have spent the last few years of our lives fighting for each other, for a better future, and I don’t think that fire will dim as we move into this next chapter,” Essex said. “As we move to new cities and countries and meet new friends and colleagues, our fire will spread. Our fight for justice and equity will continue. Look around you. You are not alone facing these upcoming challenges. We are here together in this pursuit of change that has brought entire generations to the streets in protest and solidarity.”
Another student speaker was MD graduate Uchechukwu Emili, who recognized the ways her classmates went out of their way to serve the community, especially during a global pandemic.
“We are the only class that did their whole clinical experience through COVID, and we could have been the class that made it all about us,” Emili said. “But I think we dealt with it with as much grace as we possibly could have—and we came out stronger for it. We’re even more resolute in our calling to be doctors now.”
“You’ve shown remarkable professionalism and resilience throughout your time with us, not only in completing your degrees, but also in contributing to keeping our community safe—whether through gathering PPE for frontline workers, serving as contact tracers, giving vaccinations, caring for patients and in countless other ways–your compassion, determination and grit shined,” said IU School of Medicine Dean Jay L. Hess, MD, PhD, MHSA. “Many of you also stepped up to lead as our nation confronted issues of systemic racism. You used your collective voice to amplify the voices of those who historically have been marginalized. And you have worked alongside our school’s leadership on task forces and other initiatives to improve diversity, equity and inclusion—making sure your class did its part to make IU School of Medicine more welcoming and inclusive for future students.”
In addition to 455 doctorate- and master-level degrees awarded this year, 147 associate and Bachelor of Science degrees will be earned by graduated of the IU School of Medicine Health Professions Program. The Health Professions Program awards degrees in histotechnology, paramedic science, radiology, cytotechnology, clinical laboratory science, medical technology, nuclear medicine technology, radiation therapy and respiratory therapy. And for the first time, 17 students graduated from the Bachelor of Science in Medical Imaging program from the IU School of Medicine—Fort Wayne campus.
Total numbers of degrees awarded by IU School of Medicine include:
147 Health Professions Program degrees (54 associate and 93 Bachelor of Science)
IU School of Medicine is the largest medical school in the United States and is annually ranked among the top medical schools in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. The school offers high-quality medical education, access to leading medical research and rich campus life in nine Indiana cities, including rural and urban locations consistently recognized for livability.