CLEMSON — Clemson University’s School of Nursing will join select nursing schools across the nation in hosting a White Coat Ceremony Friday. The ceremony will begin at 5 p.m. in the Brooks Center for the Performing Arts auditorium.

Clemson University is one of only 100 nursing schools chosen to take part in the tradition, which commemorates the entrance of first-year students into nursing school.

The White Coat Ceremony began at the Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons in 1993 as a way to emphasize patient-centered care. It now is a practice in 96 percent of all accredited medical schools in the United States.

The expansion of White Coat ceremonies into nursing schools, including Clemson’s, is supported in part by the Arnold P. Gold Foundation and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing. The Clemson ceremony is being planned by the School of Nursing’s Student Nurses Association.

“We are excited to be part of this nationwide effort and to recognize the commitment of nurses to their patients,” said Ann Wetsel, interim director of Clemson’s School of Nursing. “It will not only be meaningful to our students, but also serve as a reminder of the importance of the profession to the health and wellbeing of their patients.”

Housed in the College of Health, Education and Human Development, Clemson’s School of Nursing offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nursing, as well as a bachelor’s program for registered nurses and an accelerated second degree program for those who have bachelors’ degrees in other fields. The school also offers an interdisciplinary Ph.D. in health-care genetics, the first program of its kind in the nation.

The Arnold P. Gold Foundation is a nonprofit organization that works with health-care professionals in training and in practice to instill a culture of respect, dignity and compassion for patients and professionals. The American Association of Colleges of Nursing sets standards, provides resources and develops the leadership capacity of member schools to advance nursing education, research and practice.

— Danielle Shuff, Class of 2016

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