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13th Annual White Coats-4-Care Scholarship Fundraiser to “Dress and Equip” Incoming Class of FAU Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine

Standing from left: – Beth Elgort, Dr. Jennifer Caceres, Arlene Herson, Dr. Ron Rubin, Bonnie Halperin, Dr. Joanna Drowos, Bryan Drowos, Florida State Senator Lori Berman Seated from left- Constance Scott, WC4C Co-Chair Jon Kaye, CoM Dean Dr. Julie Pilitis, WC4C Co-Chair Bonnie Kaye, Dr. Michael Dennis

Set for Wednesday, August 2, 2023

Boca Raton, FL – Florida Atlantic University’s Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine (CoM) will host its 13th annual White Coats-4-Care (WC4C) major scholarship fundraiser for its incoming Class of 2027 on Wednesday, August 2.  Drawing civic and business leaders, healthcare professionals and community advocates each year to welcome and “dress and equip” the incoming class of medical students, the event will be held at 6:00 p.m. on FAU’s Boca Raton campus. Annual WC4C campaign funds help CoM attract, recruit, train and educate the next generation of humanistic clinicians and scientists – doctors who care and cure in this community.

“While athletics recently led the way with national recognition, the College of Medicine has also reached new heights – with its first national ranking in U.S. News & World Report, a 20% increase in class size from 68 to 80, and funding for renovations and research,” shared Co-chair Bonnie Kaye, who with Kaye Communications PR & Marketing (KCOM-PR) partner Jon Kaye has co-chaired WC4C since its inception for 13 consecutive years.

Schmidt College of Medicine, one of approximately 156 accredited and rated allopathic (M.D.) medical schools in the U.S., will soon welcome the students of its incoming Class of 2027, the 13th class of physicians-in-training, added WC4C Co-chair Jon Kaye. “Bonnie and I are honored to once again chair this White Coats-4-Care Campaign to raise much-needed funds to provide scholarships and other resources for students. It is these scholarships that give students the ability to follow their hearts, not their debts, into lifelong medical careers.”

With the average cost of a medical education reaching $250,000, 80 to 85% of the College’s talented students require financial assistance. Heavy debt often impacts both a student’s choice of medical school as well as their medical specialty based on its income potential to repay loans. Scholarship funds help the CoM attract, nurture and sustain an exceptional and diverse class of students who will mirror the communities they serve.

While any gift is welcome, WC4C donation options include:

Community continues to remain at the forefront of the CoM. Nearly 30% of 2023 graduates have chosen to remain in Florida for their residency training, playing a vital role in bridging the healthcare workforce gap in the state. White Coats offers the first step in welcoming the new matriculants into the college.

“With the growth of our South Florida community, our need for healthcare professionals continues to increase,” said Julie G. Pilitsis, M.D., Ph.D., M.B.A., Dean and Vice President of Medical Affairs, Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine. “The Schmidt College of Medicine, through its medical education, residency, and fellowship programs, is working to build a population of doctors trained both in the community and for the community.”

To further FAU’s commitment to increase much needed medical residency positions in Palm Beach County and to ensure that the region will continue to have an adequate and well-trained physician workforce, the FAU Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine Consortium for Graduate Medical Education (GME) was formed in fall 2011 with five leading hospitals in Palm Beach County. The Consortium currently has five Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accredited residencies, including internal medicine, surgery, emergency medicine, psychiatry, and neurology.

Dean Pilitsis reports that 100% of graduating students this year have been successfully placed in a residency program, being accepted into highly prestigious institutions across the nation, such as New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center, Yale – New Haven Hospital, Boston Children’s Hospital, University of Chicago Medical Center, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, and Brown University, among others. Nearly 40% of CoM students have also chosen to pursue careers in primary care, which helps to address the national shortage of internists, pediatricians, and family practitioners. Students have matched into highly competitive specialties such as orthopedic surgery, plastic surgery, urology, ophthalmology, neurosurgery, and dermatology.  

Launched in 2010, FAU’s Schmidt College of Medicine became the 134th allopathic medical school in North America, and has swiftly become nationally recognized for its innovative curriculum.  With an emphasis on teamwork and collaboration, the college is dedicated to addressing healthcare disparities in the community. The college offers M.D./Ph.D., M.D./M.B.A., and M.D./M.H.A. programs. A new Research Distinction Track, the first LCME approved track for the college, offers a parallel curriculum
for medical students. Additionally, a Genomics and Predictive Health Certificate prepares students for careers in personalized medicine, biotechnology and population health. 

WC4C co-chairs are supported by a dedicated committee, including Patricia Anastasio, M.D. and Thomas Mersch, Esq.; Melissa Azrack; Florida State Senator Lori Berman and Jeffrey Ganeles, D.M.D.; Alisa Cohen and G. Richard Cohen, M.D.; Phyllis and Michael T.B. Dennis, M.D.; Joanna Drowos, D.O. and Bryan Drowos; Beth Elgort; Beth and Kenneth Garrod, M.D.; June Gelb; Bonnie Halperin; Arlene Herson; Allen B. Konis, D.D.S.; Jaclyn Klimczak, M.D.; Deborah Leising; Natalia Margolis; Elizabeth and Stuart Markowitz, M.D.; Lynn and Joseph Ouslander, M.D.; Ronald L. Rubin, D.M.D.; Constance Scott; Robin Trompeter and the Honorable Robert Weinroth.

To learn more about the White Coat Society or other gift options, visit fauf.fau.edu/whitecoats  or contact Amy Mauser, Assistant Director of Development at 561-297-0871 or amauser@health.fau.edu.

2023 White Coats-4-Care Committee Photos

Photo: Gina Fontana

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