Close this Alert

Close this Alert
ShareThis Increase Font Size Decrease Font Size

College of Veterinary Medicine presents 60 students with white coats

November 18, 2019

College of Veterinary Medicine’s Class of 2021 in their white coats, with special guests and college administrators.
College of Veterinary Medicine’s Class of 2021 in white coats, along with special guests representing partnering vet. med. associations and college administrators.

Contact:  Anissa L. Riley, Director, Office of External Affairs, College of Veterinary Medicine

Pride and excitement marked the transition of 60 veterinary medicine students to the clinical phase of their studies on Saturday, Nov. 2, as the College of Veterinary Medicine hosted its annual White Coat Ceremony in the University Chapel.

Conlee Fry, class co-president, with Dean Perry
Conlee Fry, class co-president, with Dean Perry

“The annual White Coat Ceremony is a celebratory moment for our students and the realization that they will now begin to put into practice during the clinical phase of the curriculum the classroom knowledge they have been obtaining thus far in the veterinary medical program,” said Dr. Ruby L. Perry, dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine. “The conferring of the white coat symbolizes professionalism, compassion and trust — which these future professionals must earn from their clients and patients. This is a major milestone, and we want our students to celebrate their accomplishments also.”

The ceremony is planned each year by the college’s Office of Academic and Student Affairs, which is under the guidance of Dr. Roslyn Casimir, associate dean. 

“We appreciate the support of our sponsors, faculty, staff, students and alumni as these veterinary medical students begin their clinical journey before entering the veterinary profession,” Casimir said.

Dr. Harvey Crumm, senior academic liaison with Zoetis Animal Health and a devoted White Coat Ceremony sponsor, sent congratulations to the honorees. Dr. Calvin Johnson, dean of Auburn University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, also gave congratulatory greetings to the students. 

The white coats for the students from Alabama, Kentucky and South Carolina were purchased and donned by representatives of their respective veterinary medical associations: Dr. Alan Jones, president, Alabama Veterinary Medical Association; Dr. Debbie Shoulders, president, Kentucky Veterinary Medical Association; and Dr. Patty Scharko, president, South Carolina Association of Veterinarians.

William Galbreth, class co-president, with Dean Perry
William Galbreth, class co-president, with Dean Perry

“Every step closer to our students becoming one of the career-ready veterinarians that Tuskegee University produces is where we place our focus,” Perry said.

The 60 members of the Class of 2021 receiving white coats were:

from Alabama: Taylor L. Darwin, Kandis L. Foster, Desiray R. Garcia, Elizabeth A. Graham, Marina R. Janes, Nickolas R. McLaughlin, Jazmine S. Pritchett, and Lauren A. Yeldell

from Kentucky: Danielle M.M. Bass, Cooper H. Headley, and Jessica T. Williams

from South Carolina: Rhiannon T. Williams

from other states: Christine V. Albritton, Alana D. Alford, Corwin S. Sekani Ali, Haley J. Beamon, Aijah D. Bradford, Jasmine D. Brock, Crystal L. Cain, Noelle D. Callahan, Derek B. Carn, Kaitlyn A. Coleman, Shantivia D. Conley, Sheree N. Deadrick, Austin M. Deese, Allena J. Edmonds, William J. Galbreth, Maya C. Gifford, Manuela Gil, Onyx G. Goins, Gabrielle M. Gonzalez, Kierra C. Graham, Willie E. Graham, Shantavia N. Hayes, Conlee P. Fry Herrera, Jonathan N. Higgins, Kenneth G. Hiscocks Jr.,  Carmen C. Holcombe, Kimberly Holford, Raven M. Horne, Alexis Howard, Tenisa M. Lucas, Khadijah A. Martin, Chelsea L. McDonald, Johneisha D. Motley, Jonathan D. Owens, Katie E. Richey, Marlee G. Rodgers, Kaisha M. Rodriguez, Naihomie N. Rodriguez, Stephanie Rodriguez-Lugo, Traia M. Roper, LaTroya D. Scott, Jasmine L. Smith, Samantha N. Special, Simone A. Stewart, Sandra T. Suarez, Macarena Terra, Carrisa C. Thomas, and Britney G. Washington

Tuskegee’s College of Veterinary Medicine is the only veterinary medical professional program located on the campus of a historically black college or university (HBCU). Accredited by the American Veterinary Medicine Association Council on Education, the college has educated more than 70 percent of the nation’s African-American veterinarians and received recognition as the most diverse of all 30 schools and colleges of veterinary medicine in the nation. Under the Regional Plan for Veterinary Training, the college currently serves veterinary medicine students hailing from Alabama, Kentucky and South Carolina. In addition to a doctor in veterinary medicine (DVM), the college offers master’s degrees in veterinary science and public health, and doctoral degrees in interdisciplinary pathobiology and integrative biosciences. Learn more at

© 2019, Tuskegee University