The Bahamas swears-in graduating class of 2020 doctors

Flanked by 35 young, bright Bahamian doctors, Prime Minister Hubert Minnis (front left), Governor-General Cornelius Smith and Director of the UWI School of Clinical Medicine & Research, The Bahamas (SCMR) Dr Robin Roberts smile for the camera after the medical practitioners were sworn-in on Sunday. (Photo: Facebook @OPMBS)

Government House in Nassau was the perfect backdrop for 35 students of the University the West Indies’ (UWI) School of Clinical Medicine and Research, who were sworn-in as the newest batch of practicing Bahamian doctors on Sunday (July 5).

The in-person ceremony, overseen by the Ministry of Health in the Bahamas, saw the 2020 graduates, 80 per cent of which were women, following the age-old tradition of taking the Hippocratic Oath.

Offering his congratulations to the graduates, Prime Minister Hubert Minnis, whose son was in the batch of new doctors, called the achievement a great moment for the Bahamian Commonwealth.

“[In] taking this oath, you have agreed to demonstrate complete honesty and discipline throughout your entire career. It is your job to tell [your patients] the truth, it is also your job to give them hope. Throughout our careers you must remain humble and demonstrate humility,” Dr Minnis remarked.

Like father, like son! Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis shares a light moment with Governor-General Cornelius Smith after the swearing-in ceremony that saw Runako Aranha-Minnis as one of the 35 newest doctors in the Bahamian commonwealth on Sunday. (Photo: Facebook @OPMBS)

Having aced his final Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) exam, Dr Rico Hart was recognised as this year’s Most Outstanding Student.

Dr Hart also walked away with the highest grade-point average (GPA), 3.88 throughout the entire medical course, and received the Cecil Bethel Award.

In his keynote address, Governor-General Cornelius Smith praised the newest cohort for being a beacon of hope and pride in The Bahamas.

“Before me this afternoon, there is a cohort of 35 young Bahamian medical graduates that include representation from many of our family islands. Even more astonishing is the fact that some 80 per cent of these graduates are female,” Governor-General Smith said.

“Graduates, we’ve come a long way in The Bahamas, and we’ve done it in a very short time. You have the same opportunity and the abilities to become whatever you can aspire. Your progress parallels the advancement of our educational system,” he added.

Masked-up and socially distanced, 35 men and women from Bahamas soil graduated on Sunday in the capital Nassau. (Photo: Facebook @OPMBS)

Governor-General Smith further reminded the graduates that while the come highly qualified, their achievements did not come without a cost.

“Let me remind you that your success is a result of our commitment and sacrifice of the Bahamian people. To who much is given, much is required. You are our offsprings in who we have great hope to provide healthcare,” Smith noted.