Each year, the incoming class of medical students creates their own class oath, which they recite together at the White Coat Ceremony. The oath is a pledge, both to honor the medical profession but also to care for those who seek their help in their future careers. As Dean Brooks Jackson said in his opening remarks at the ceremony, “Your future roles in preventing and alleviating human pain and suffering must be firmly anchored in these values.”

Class Oath, University of Minnesota Medical School, Twin Cities Campus Class of 2021

“With gratitude for the privilege of becoming a physician, I pledge this oath to myself, my patients, my colleagues, and my community:

I pledge to care for my patients with all that I have to offer, knowing that when I take care of myself, I have the most to give. I will use my knowledge and compassion to empower patients to be champions of their health and well-being. I will care for patients with cultural competency and respect. Recognizing the power and responsibility of being a physician, I will meet vulnerability with humility. I pledge to see the person behind the disease. 

I pledge to exemplify the integrity and the virtues that sustain the practice of medicine. I aspire to excellence while being mindful of my limitations and open to the voices of others. I will nourish my practice with a commitment to lifelong learning. I pledge to honor the passions and obligations that define me as a person, both in medicine and life. 

I pledge to learn diligently from my patients, colleagues, and communities, to advance the art and science of healing. I will strive for excellence through innovation in evidence-based medicine, respecting its utility and acknowledging its limitations. I pledge to bridge scientific advancement and social equity. I will challenge the barriers that keep my patients from care, and I will raise my voice to call out injustice and celebrate progress.

With this oath, I pledge to honor the traditions of those who came before me, and the hopes of those I serve. May I long experience joy in the healing of those who seek my help.”

Class Oath, University of Minnesota Medical School, Duluth Campus Class of 2021

“We, the Class of 2021 of the University of Minnesota Medical School Duluth campus, stand before our family, friends, mentors and colleagues—proud to honor the legacy of the medical profession and humbled to pledge our duty to future patients.

As physicians, we will treat our patients with empathy and compassion. We pledge to uphold the dignity of each patient and to practice without prejudice, recognizing that patients come from diverse backgrounds. We aim to foster an environment of mutual respect and to holistically treat patients by tending to their mental, physical, emotional and spiritual well-being.

We promise to advocate on behalf of our patients and communities to improve the delivery of quality healthcare. We will empower our patients to engage in their own care and to better advocate for themselves with the ability to make informed decisions.

Through the strength of collaboration, we will work to enhance the coordination of care and seek innovative means to help the underserved. In acknowledgment of our own limitations, we will learn from our mistakes and invite advice and criticism without hubris.

We strive for excellence and commit to lifelong learning. Our education is ours to share and should be used to contribute to the prosperity of others. As leaders, we will hold ourselves to the highest standards of professionalism in all aspects of our careers and communities.

It is with great privilege, gratitude and honor that we accept these white coats as a symbol of our commitment to a career in medicine and service to others.”

Read more about the Class of 2021 White Coat Ceremony.