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Group photo of nine medical students at Commencement 2023 from Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine in Florida

May 16, 2023

By Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science staff

Nine medical students in Florida celebrated their graduation from Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine on Saturday, May 13. They now will move on to residencies at Mayo Clinic and elsewhere, helping to create the future of healthcare. Commencement ceremonies in Arizona and Minnesota will follow later this week.

At a commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 13, nine medical students in Florida graduated from Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine. The graduates are part of an innovative program that allows students to complete their first two years of didactic study in Arizona or Rochester, and finish the final two years of clinical study at Mayo Clinic in Florida.   

The nine students in Florida join more than 90 Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine students in Arizona and Minnesota who are graduating this month. They persevered through the pandemic, learning health care in a rapidly changing environment. They now will move on to residencies at Mayo Clinic and across the country, becoming future healthcare leaders.

Graduates have worked side-by-side with renowned experts at Mayo Clinic to create new ways to address patients' future needs and lead positive change in medicine. They will lead innovative and transformative efforts in healthcare and apply knowledge to develop creative solutions for some of the most complex problems facing patients and health systems today.

James Hwang, M.D., was the student commencement speaker, and as a graduate and soon-to-be physician, he asked students to take time to appreciate their accomplishments.

Featured commencement speaker

Dawn Mussallem, D.O., a consultant in Hematology/Oncology and an assistant professor of medicine, was the commencement speaker. She spoke from both her professional experience and her personal experience as a patient. 

Dr. Mussallem is internationally known in the fields of breast medicine and lifestyle medicine. Three months into medical school, she was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. In 2021, she was a heart transplant recipient. At commencement, she shared her journey to become a physician, her healthcare experiences, her perspective on finding purpose in caring for others, and the power of changing your mindset.

Commencement in Arizona and Minnesota

Medical students in Arizona will celebrate commencement at 1 p.m. MST on Wednesday, May 17. Learn more about the commencement ceremony in Arizona, including a link to the livestream.

In Minnesota, students from Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine and Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences will celebrate a joint commencement at 1 p.m. CT, on Saturday, May 19. Learn more about the joint commencement ceremony at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota.

This story originally appeared on Mayo Clinic News Network as Future of healthcare: Mayo Clinic Alix School of Medicine students graduate in Florida.