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Congratulations, TouroCOM-Middletown M.S. Class of 2016!

The Master of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies in Biological and Physical Sciences Middletown Class of 2016 celebrate their graduation at the Paramount Theatre.

May 17, 2016

In his Message to Graduates, Middletown Dean Kenneth Steier, DO said “we couldn’t have asked for a better inaugural class for the Master’s program. The commitment you have to your profession, and your Master’s, was breathtaking to see.”

During the ceremony, Dr. Stephen Jones, Director of the MS Program and Associate Preclinical Dean, delivered the commencement opening address, while grand marshal Dr. Stany Lobo, Teacher of the Year, led the processional of graduating students. The Pledge of Allegiance was directed by Dr. Jeffrey Karpen, chair of the Department of Basic Biomedical Sciences, after which Rabbi Moshe Krupka, Executive VP of the Touro College and University System, offered the invocation address. Students also heard speeches from Dr. Jerry Cammarata, Dean of Student Affairs, and two faculty members, Dr. Pearl Myers, assistant director of the M.S. Program, and Dr. Sankhavaram Panini, course director of Biochemistry and Medical Genetics.

In her keynote speech, Theresa Butler, MPA, Chief Executive Officer of Middletown Community Health Center, acknowledged the “absolutely wonderful” pioneering efforts of the MS students. “As the first graduating class, you guys are really the trailblazers. This was not an easy task, and you are the group that made it through the first round.” She also encouraged them to “come back [to Middletown] and take on the D.O. program,” and that ultimately, it’s not what institution one graduates from that matters, it’s whether they “have heart.”

“When we look to bring on a provider, I say to my staff, “It’s great that they graduated from Yale; it might be great that they graduated from Touro, from Harvard. But at the end of the day, they need to have heart. Because in healthcare, you have to have compassion. It’s important that you respond to your patients with proper attention and focus on their needs and their wants.”

Many locals also made appearances at the ceremony, including the members of the Middletown Police Department (who served as the Honor Guard and delivered the Presentation of Colors) and Ms. Joslyn Shepard Stivers, a student at the local Walkil Senior High School, who sang the National Anthem. Dr. Kristine Young, President at SUNY-Orange; and Joseph De Stefano, mayor of Middletown, also delivered congratulatory remarks.

Congratulations, Class of 2016!