Some facts and figures about the Class of 2019:
• 22 incoming students are out-of-state residents, from as far away as California and Oregon
• The three oldest members of the class join Robert Wood Johnson Medical School as second-career students, each having worked 10 years in special forces, as a fighter pilot (and Top Gun instructor), and as a reporter in Afghanistan, respectively. The military personnel remain on active duty. The class also includes one military reserve guard.
• Class members attended 68 different undergraduate institutions, including Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey (29 percent) and the Ivy League colleges (16 percent)
• Three students were accepted as part of the new PharmD/MD program with the Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy at Rutgers, and one additional student has already obtained a PhD. S
• 75 percent of the class majored in the natural or physical sciences as undergraduates, with many double and triple majoring in science, social science, behavioral science, and the humanities.
• 15 percent were born abroad, and their nationalities span 16 nations. The majority of the entering class (78 percent ) have basic to expert knowledge of a second language, with 36 languages spoken in the class.
“I am honored to welcome the historic Class of 2019 into our medical school,” Gabriel said, as first-time students and families live tweeted congratulations at the ceremony. “This class has an exceptional record in academics, community service and advocacy, and their future is limitless.” Gabriel was previously at Mayo Medical School
The event’s keynote speaker was Manuel Jimenez, MD, who serves as assistant professor of pediatrics, and of family medicine and community health at the medical school. Jimenez received his medical degree from Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in 2006. As a student, he co-founded the Promise Clinic, a student-run health clinic that was developed in partnership with Elijah’s Promise Soup Kitchen. The Promise Clinic is celebrating its 10th year of providing health services to the area’s underserved citizens.
Jimenez returned to Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School as a faculty member in 2014 and was named the school’s first Chancellor Scholar. He serves as director of developmental behavioral pediatrics education at the Boggs Center on Developmental Disabilities, and is a developmental and behavioral pediatrician at Children’s Specialized Hospital. His research has focused on understanding the relationship between early adversity and child development, improving access to developmental services and therapies for young children, and promoting shared decision making in pediatrics.