With a mace, a medallion, academic regalia and the sounds of Pomp and Circumstance playing during the processional, the St. Jude Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences graduation ceremony started as any commencement ceremony would. The difference is that this ceremony was the first for St. Jude.
The inaugural class of 11 students, celebrated a milestone by graduating with their Master’s of Science degrees June 21. St. Jude embraced their successes with this commencement, which marks the first time in the institution’s history to award degrees.
The graduate students, who started in July of 2017, came to St. Jude from New York, California, Arkansas, Louisiana, Colorado, Iowa, Minnesota, New Mexico and Tennessee.
Stephen White, DPhil, Graduate School president and dean, opened the ceremony with praise for the students and their hard work. White explained that all students passed their intensives “with flying colors” and they will be moving on to full-time research in the labs as they work toward their PhDs for the next three years.
National Outreach Director Marlo Thomas offered a heartfelt commencement address, starting with more praise for the students. “You will become the torchbearers of my father’s great dream,” she said.