The Texas A&M Health Science Center College of Medicine held commencement ceremonies Saturday, May 22 at Rudder Auditorium on the main campus of Texas A&M University. The College of Medicine graduated 74 medical students, two M.D./Ph.D. students and five doctoral (Ph.D.) students in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.

The ceremony kicked off with a welcome by the college’s Interim Dean, Dr. Edward Sherwood, followed by stage party introductions by Health Science Center President, Dr. Nancy W. Dickey.

Mrs. Sue Stamper Reynolds, the widow of Joe H. Reynolds who died in December 2009, was then invited to come forward to receive a special plaque.  As one of the College of Medicine’s earliest champions, Joe Reynolds was instrumental in ensuring a home for the college on the Texas A&M University campus, as evidenced by his namesake, the Joe H. Reynolds Medical Building.

In a show of support for Reynolds, a former Marine, and his family, Dr. Sherwood then asked three College of Medicine graduates to stand and be recognized as the newest commissioned officers in the U.S. armed forces.  All Marines were then invited to stand and be recognized, and finally, all members of the armed forces present stood and were recognized.

The commencement speaker was Dr. Story Musgrave, a former astronaut and physician-scientist for NASA. Dr. Musgrave reminded the graduates that they were about to embark on a life of special opportunities and special challenges.

“Follow your heart,” he advised.  “Doing so will give you the energy to pursue what you love so that you can make the biggest difference in the lives of others.”

The long awaited moment arrived, as the students were called up on stage to receive their hoods and degrees.

Graduate Evan Hardegree was honored with the Helen Salyer Anderson Award, which is presented to the outstanding senior for the highest achievement in four years of medical school. The award was established in 1980 by Frank G. Anderson, Jr., M.D., in honor of his mother, Helen Salyer Anderson.

Graduate Mooseung Lee was honored with the Graduate Research Award for outstanding research achievements.

Dr. Hardegree also gave the response for the Class of 2010, followed by the administration of the Oath of Hippocrates by Dr. J. T. Lamar McNew. 

A reception in the Rudder Exhibit Hall followed.

— Dhwani Chauhan