PHOTOSTREAMS: Hawai`i’s newest physicians have academically out-scored their U.S. peers, come from the most diverse medical school in America

“In a way, MD stands for Mom and Dad,” is how one of our graduates put it, at the John A. Burns School of Medicine’s Convocation Ceremony. The 2012 event, celebrating our new physician graduates — now alumni– was on Mother’s Day, at the University of Hawaii Manoa Kennedy Theater.  The new MDs, the Class of 2012, were awarded their degrees on May 12. 

Convocation is always memorable because it includes touching moments in which our students publicly express their “mahalo” to family and friends — and each other — for the support they received through four years of challenging study. An individual the students have designated crosses the stage to present each student a maile lei. The student’s words are read during that moment–expressing how that person made the dream of medical school come true.

Public and private school graduates

17 of the 64 new MDs are graduates of public high schools in Hawai’i, including Mililani, Moanalua (2), Pearl City (2), McKinley (2), Roosevelt, Kahuku, Kalani, Kaua`i High, Waiakea, Waimea, Hilo, Kea`au and public charter school University Lab School (2).

Private schools attended by the Class of 2012 include St. Louis, Punahou, Iolani, Hawai`i Prep Academy, Hawai`i Baptist Academy, Seabury Hall, Kamehameha and Maryknoll. One student was home schooled. The year’s MD graduates hail from O`ahu, Maui and Hawai`i Island. Eleven of the students are from American Samoa, California, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Oregon, Wyoming, and Canada.

Exceeding their peers at America’s medical schools for seven consecutive years

For the last seven years in a row, our second year students have outscored the national average in the U.S. Medical Education Licensing Exam (USMLE) Step1. The Class of 2012 are included in that streak. The past two years, 100% of our class has passed the exam. The most recent scores (Class of 2013) were 11 points above the national average.

“Most diverse medical school in the country”


Dr. Marc Nivet, Dean Jerris Hedges

Convocation featured a keynote address by Marc Nivet, Ed.D., the Chief Diversity Officer for the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). Dr. Darrell Kirch, MD, President of the AAMC, last year called JABSOM the most diverse medical school in the country. MD 2012 Class President Daniel Sugai, who graduated high school at University Lab School, (and is proudly from Waialua on Oahu’s North Shore) delivered the Student Address, and was voted by his classmates as winner of the ALOHA Award. The award recognizes the student who most personifies the Aloha Spirit. Appropriately, ALOHA is JABSOM’s vision: to Attain Lasting Optimal Care for All.

 Up next, our MDs will be practicing medicine while training in post-MD residency programs.


JABSOM Convocation 2012 Photos – Set 1

JABSOM Convocation 2012 Photos – Set 2

Other highlights and story ideas involving the Class of 2012: 

*The first brother and sister to graduate from our MD program at the same time

See: first-siblings-will-become-mds-in-class-of-2012/

*Two couples who met and fell in love at JABSOM have obtained residency training positions together

See: after-medical-school-in-our-students-own-words/

*One of our students has already been published in a top medical journal before becoming an MD

See: in-medical-journal-before-gaining-degree/

*Six of our new MDs are Native Hawaiians. See:

See where 2012-Match-Results.pdf our Class of 2012 have “matched” to perform their next step of post-MD graduate training, in Residency Programs which include those we run in Hawai’i in conjunction with our training partner community hospitals and other medical facilities.

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