James Harris, general counsel and chief contracting officer at the Housing Authority of the City of Pittsburgh -- and father of incoming student Joshua Harris (M1) – was so impressed with the diversity he saw in the student body at the College of Medicine’s White Coat ceremony that he shared his enthusiasm on LinkedIn. His comments are reprinted with permission.

Congratulations to Northeast Ohio Medical University!!!

Located in rural Rootstown Ohio, this University is a shining example of what America should be. The America I've waited more than 64 years to see.

The keynote address, by Yoleetah Ilodi, M.D, assistant dean of diversity, is where this University truly began to separate itself. I hope the class recognizes what they heard.

The class themselves almost brought me to tears. The diversity of race, age and religion was stunning. 174 students! Now I don't have statistics, but approximately 54 to 56 percent were women. One or two wore the hijab. There was at least one young man with a yarmulke. I saw a number of crosses as jewelry. Indian, African American/Black, Asian, Caucasian and biracial. The age ranged from 19 to well into their 30s. Some were married. Twenty-two were from Ohio State University. Many had master’s degrees. Men with marine haircuts, others with long hair, some with earrings. Women with tattoos – from small above the ankle to full sleeves.

All had smiles on their faces as they put on their white coats.

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