Congratulations to this year’s College of Medicine White Coat Ceremony Student Coaters!
These six individuals were nominated by their peers and exhibit the qualities of ethical leadership, academic success, community/campus involvement and truly stand out as role models.
The Student Coaters place white coats on the first-year medicine students during the ceremony, which represents the new students’ role as future physicians, and the many responsibilities that come with it.
The Class of 2026 College of Medicine White Coat Ceremony will take place at 11 a.m., Friday, July 22 in the NEW Center Ballroom.
Meet this year’s coaters, pictured clockwise from top left:
Abel Abraham, M2
Abel is from Solon, Ohio and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in health management from Saint Louis University. A fun fact about Abel is that he likes Thai food. His favorite thing about NEOMED is the community. He is excited to be a coater because he knows this is an important milestone in every medicine student’s life. Some advice he offers our new students is to “study hard but also make sure to take time for yourself.”
Michelle Helou, M2
Michelle is from Lebanon and attended Case Western Reserve University, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry and psychology. A fun fact about Michelle is that you can almost always catch her singing the wrong lyrics to a song at any given moment. Her favorite thing about NEOMED is how approachable and helpful the faculty are! The White Coat Ceremony is an important milestone in every medical student’s career, and she is excited to be part of this memorable event. Her best advice for the new students is to “take some time to learn how you study best."
Princess Purlett, M2
Princess is originally from Miami, Florida, and attended the University of South Florida in Tampa where she earned a bachelor’s degree in biomedical sciences and psychology. A fun fact about her is that she played three sports in high school and college: volleyball, basketball and flag football, and still tries to find time to play while studying medicine. Princess’ favorite thing about NEOMED are the friendships she has made. She is excited to be a coater because she remembers how exciting the ceremony was for her and her classmates. The best advice she can offer is to “go with the flow and not succumb to the stress because it will become overwhelming. Focus on yourself and what makes you happy and you’ll do great!”
Ali Shah, M2
Ali hails from Cleveland, Ohio, and attended Cleveland State University where he received his bachelor’s degree in health sciences through the CSU-NEOMED Pathway for Urban Health. A fun fact about Ali is that he has a sister who lives in downtown Bangkok. What Ali loves about NEOMED is that the campus is full of “very cool people” who are willing to help students. He shares that “most of the upperclassmen will be more than willing to bestow some wisdom on how to succeed, all you have to do is ask!” Ali is excited to be a coater because the white coat is something that every student has been working toward for years, and to be the one to don someone with it is a huge blessing. Ali’s advice is to “seek out M2s for guidance. There is no need to go at this alone when we are all willing to help!”
Michaela Stamper, M2
Michaela’s hometown is Columbus, Ohio. She studied and obtained her bachelor’s degree from Case Western Reserve University in biochemistry and metabolism. A fun fact about Michaela is that she went trekking through the Himalayas this summer! Her favorite thing about NEOMED is that she appreciates how approachable the faculty are and she feels that it makes the learning environment so much more inviting. She’s excited to serve as an honorary coater because she wants to help integrate the Class of 2026 into our community and hopefully make them feel welcome and supported. Words of advice she wants to offer the new students is “don't worry what others are doing — everyone's success strategy is going to look different, so find what works for you and stick with it.”
Aaron Yun, M2
Aaron is from North Royalton, Ohio. He received his biochemistry degree from Case Western Reserve University in 2019. An interesting tidbit about Aaron is that his barber headlined for Jack Black’s band over the summer. His favorite thing about NEOMED is the sense of community that develops throughout your time here. As a student coater, Aaron is looking forward to welcoming the Class of 2026 with their white coats as they embark on their journey to becoming physicians. For the incoming class, his one piece of advice is to “not compare yourself to others. You all belong here, and I wish you the best of luck.”