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Lawrence Sampson, M.D., delivers the Dr. Lester Saidman Memorial Lecture

Scranton, PA – Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine held its 15th annual White Coat Ceremony for the Class of 2027 on Saturday, Aug. 5, at Theater at North in Scranton.

“The White Coat Ceremony is a highlight of the academic year at our medical school,” said Geisinger Commonwealth’s president and dean, Julie Byerley, M.D., M.P.H. “Welcoming these new students and watching them take their first step of initiation into the medical profession is always a joy. And because almost half of this incoming class are members of the Abigail Geisinger Scholars Program, we are greeting a large number of future Geisinger physicians who will care for our communities. That’s another great reason to celebrate today.”

The Class of 2027’s 115 future doctors participated in a ceremony, held in common with virtually every other medical school in the nation, designed to welcome new medical students into the profession. Students recited an oath acknowledging their responsibilities as future physicians and their obligations to future patients. Then they were cloaked with the white coat — the mantle of the medical profession. White coats were provided by The Stanley J. Dudrick, M.D., and Alan G. Goldstein Endowed Fund.

Lawrence Sampson, M.D., presented the Dr. Lester Saidman Memorial Lecture, named in honor of the respected physician and educator from Luzerne County. Dr. Sampson is chief of the Section of Vascular Surgery at Guthrie. Over the years, surgical residents and medical students have recognized his excellence as an educator with numerous teaching awards, including outstanding faculty mentor in 2021. 

About Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine

Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine (GCSOM) is a member of the Geisinger family. GCSOM offers a community-based model of medical education with campuses in Danville, Lewistown, Scranton, Sayre and Wilkes-Barre. Geisinger Commonwealth offers Doctor of Medicine (MD) and a portfolio of graduate degrees. The school’s innovative curriculum, focused on caring for people in the context of their lives and their community, attracts the next generation of physicians and scientists from within its region, as well as from across the state and the nation. Geisinger Commonwealth is committed to non-discrimination in all employment and educational opportunities. Visit

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