We didn't plan it that way, but our trip to Tennessee allowed us to be there for Brian's "white coat" ceremony at Vanderbilt, which is where all the first year med students are given their little outfits that they will wear for the rest of their schooling lives. This was an especially fun event to attend while sitting next to my brother Chris, who had his own white coat ceremony 9 years ago at Florida State. Chris's wife Molly went home with all the kids an hour before and did not have to attend the ceremony, but before she left we were given firm instructions that if we were supposed to cheer for Brian when he got his coat we needed to be ready with what we would yell out. Chris immediately shouted, "You're making a huge mistake! Don't do it!" I don't think Molly liked that cheer.
Sadly there was no actual cheering at this ceremony. It was only 45 minutes long and was no more complicated than 105 kids in a classroom putting on a jacket. As we were sitting and waiting for the ceremony to start, we were looking over the program, which was basically a list of names and the universities for each show off. Lots of Princetons, Harvards and Yales among that group. (But five Mormons. Oh yeah!) At one point Chris leaned over my shoulder to scan the names.
Chris: You know, a medical school is only as good as the number of Patels that are in the class. How many does this one have?
Chris: Fail. This whole school is a failure.
Okay, here is one photo of the super exciting moment at the end when all the students read some docotry oath all together. It seriously sounded like they should have ended it with "We are the Borg. Resistance is futile."
And here we have me and my brothers; the future Dr. Brian and my inactive brother Chris. That was the joke with this picture anyway. Probably because he looks like he is holding a beer. He wasn't. But I am still not going to reveal the actual contents of that glass :)
I thought this picture would make an excellent meme...
Well if anyone could do it, it would be him.
After the ceremony we hit the school bookstore for some birthday shopping for my dad.
And a few shenanigans....
Another fun thing to do in the bookstore is to add the prefix "Vander" to anything that starts with the letter B. Need a Vanderbook? A mini Vanderbat and Vanderball? How about a Vanderbelt or some Vanderboots? They got it! And they will even put it in a lovely Vanderbag for you when you're done.
And just as Mormons flock to visit temples across the country, teachers flock to uppity university signs to get their picture taken.
Final post tomorrow! To Nashville and Beyond!