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LECOM Bradenton Celebrates Fifth Commencement

151 students receive DO degree; 94 receive Pharm.D. degree
The Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine Bradenton campus held its commencement ceremonies on Sunday, June 10 at the Manatee Convention Center in Palmetto, Fla.On the authority of the Board of Trustees, LECOM President and CEO John M. Ferretti, DO, conferred degrees to 151 medical students, 94 pharmacy students and one Master’s of Science in Medical Education student.

This was the fifth commencement ceremony for the College of Medicine and the second for the School of Pharmacy at LECOM’s Bradenton, Fla. campus.

Approximately 3,000 family and friends filled the arena to watch the graduates walk across the stage to receive their diplomas.

Class President Miciah Jones, DO, carries the banner for the College of Osteopathic Medicine Class of 2012.

Members of the graduating class participated in commencement as standard bearers, carrying the banners of the College and its Millcreek Health System Affiliates. Miciah Jones, DO, College of Medicine class president and Gabriella Lucarelli, Pharm.D., School of Pharmacy class president led their classmates into the arena. Academic leaders carrying the health system standards included: Roberto Betancourt, DO, Pinang Balsara, Pharm.D., Lewis Bui, DO, Brandon Flohr, Pharm.D., Julia Pfaff, DO, Kyle Stephenson, DO, Nicole Thompson, DO and Amy Wilds, Pharm.D. Faculty marshals included Anthony J. Ferretti, DO and Laura Stevenson, Pharm.D.

Seventy-eight students in the Class of 2012 (52 percent) have matched into primary care residencies (Pediatrics, Internal Medicine, Family Medicine and Obstetrics and Gynecology). Forty-seven students will complete post-graduate training in Florida, including four who matched into Manatee Memorial Hospital’s residency training program.

“It is very encouraging to see that 78 of our graduates will be going into primary care,” said Robert George, DO, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs. “Since the state of Florida is hit the hardest with the physician shortage, especially in primary care, it is gratifying to know that LECOM is fulfilling its mission.”

School of Pharmacy graduates have built a solid foundation for future classes. Nearly 15 percent of the Class of 2012 has matched into post-graduate residency programs.

“This year’s class of 94 graduates enters the profession of pharmacy at one of the most exciting times in its history. Pharmacists are exceedingly being called upon to deliver the highest levels of clinical care in association with physicians and other health care providers. As a leader in pharmacy education, we are looking forward to the great things that our graduates will achieve in their careers, said Hershey S. Bell, M.D., M.S. Med. Ed., Dean of the LECOM School of Pharmacy.