LECOM Bradenton Celebrates Commencement for the Class of 2013
LECOM President and CEO John M. Ferretti, D.O. presents the Distinguished Citizen Award to BayNews9's Al Ruechel.

The Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine Bradenton campus celebrated its sixth commencement ceremonies on Sunday, June 9 at the Bradenton Area Convention Center in Palmetto, FL.

Jessica Fonseca, D.O.. and Erin Kenney, D.O., receive their diplomas at commencement.

One hundred and fifty-two College of Medicine graduates and 105 School of Pharmacy graduates in the Class of 2013 walked across the stage to receive their Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine and Doctor of Pharmacy degrees, respectively.

LECOM also presented the President’s Distinguished Citizen Award to BayNews9’s Al Ruechel.  With 26 years covering Tampa Bay area news, Ruechel still has time to volunteer as the LECOM Bradenton Student Scholarship Gala emcee. Through his efforts, deserving medical, pharmacy and dental students receive thousands of dollars in scholarship support.  His son, Chad Ruechel, D.O. was among the first graduates from LECOM Bradenton in 2008.

Sarah Fahnhorst, D.O. , did not let Crouzon’s Syndrome – an inherited disorder characterized by a malformation of the skull – stand in her way to becoming an osteopathic physician. The native of Hugo, MN, underwent two skull surgeries, all the while continuing with the rigors of medical school.

Fahnhorst explained that the challenges have helped to shape her as a physician.

“As a patient, I have been exposed to a broad spectrum of doctors.  I deeply value those doctors who truly display empathy, compassion, and a desire to help their patients achieve health and wellness,” said Fahnhorst.

The Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine offers innovative and affordable education in osteopathic medicinedentistry and pharmacy. From campuses in Erie, Pennsylvania, Greensburg, Pennsylvania and Bradenton, Florida, LECOM believes that when mind, body and spirit  come together the impossible becomes suddenly possible. It is a calling each and every one of our students embodies to become the best they can be. To prevent disease and treat it. To give hope. Can you hear the calling?

June 10, 2013
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