The School of Pharmacy in partnership with JKUAT Pharmacy Students Association( JPSA) and Kenya Medical Association (KMA) Sacco, held the first white coat ceremony to welcome new first year students on October, 6, 2023
The white coat ceremony that was held at the Sino Africa Joint Research Centre was aimed at initiating the new pharmacy students officially into their profession as well as networking with renowned professionals in the field.
Final year student and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Maisha Medical Supplies, Michael Shalom urged students to take pride in the opportunity accorded to them to study the pharmacy course and advised them to have the zeal to become better.
“You are not here by chance but by merit. Be open minded and willing to learn. Aim at making a big change and always be positive, your mentality is very important in this journey,” he advised.
He told the students to ensure they create a good rapport with people they meet. “They are the ones who will help you become what you want to be especially those already practicing the profession, they could be good mentors,” Mr. Shalom observed.
The Head of Unit Pharmacovigilance Poison and Drug information at Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH), Dr. Dorothy Ayawk highlighted the importance of discipline, building networks, challenging oneself and participating in positive group activities.
“Do not be afraid to try something new, be bold. Ensure you embrace excellence and have the drive to become better. Also try to build meaningful relationships and prioritize people who help in building you,” she said.
“Life,” she added, “will not always be a smooth line and challenges will occur.” She therefore advised students to be “resilient so as to deal with the challenges. Your presence should be seen and felt,” said Dr. Ayawk. She also told students to balance academic and social life and enjoy every moment.
The Dean, School of Pharmacy, Dr. Alex Kigundu, thanked JPSA for organizing the event and making it a success, urging them to make it an annual affair. He told the students to embrace positivity and ensure they have mentors,
“Nothing is hard. It only becomes hard when you perceive it in your mind to be hard. Get people who can mentor and help you understand various roles that pharmacists can play,” said Dr. Kigundu.
The highlight of the ceremony was the sight of the students donning their white coats and solemnly recitation of their oath as an inception into the new field.
Representatives from the Kenya Medical Association (KMA) Sacco, lecturers from the School of Pharmacy, alumni and continuing students attended the event.