Monday, July 11, 2011

Medical School Graduation

I feel like a regular Romanian Graduation afficionado, what with the number I have attended this spring. But. The last was the most meaningful for me, as it was the UMF graduation, where 3 dear brothers and several other friends graduated medical school. It's kind of a big deal to graduate medical school. And for a few of these guys, it is a particularly big deal because of how long they've been in school. Unlike in the US, both here and in Nigeria people start medical school straight out of high school, and it's a 6 year program. Two of my friends started school in Nigeria and went through four years there before coming to Romania because the school was having all kinds of troubles. Here in Romania they were forced to start back in the SECOND year, even though they should have been in the FIFTH. So. I know it was very frustrating at the time, but I also know that they now see God's hand in it all and how He works all things together for good for His children. So now, after NINE years of medical school, they have graduated. And that is just two of the guys that I know. Other people have similar stories (several actually have the same story), but surely all have had setbacks, frustrations, successes, and failures along the way. 

But. By God's grace, they did it! What a great reason to celebrate and rejoice!

The actual ceremony was a big load of absurdity, as it took place in a space that was about 300 people too small and therefore even with air conditioning it was brutally hot. Not to mention that several hundred people had to stand outside the room (a small expo hall, really), where there were no screen or anything to watch the ceremony. So it goes. Here is half of the room...
The English program (40 students) and the Romanian program (350 students) were together for the graduation, so it was just really overwhelmingly Romanian in its format and length and language. So it goes. But ah man, most all the Africans came to support their brothers and sisters, and when it FINALLY came turn for the English program people to be called you can bet we all pushed to the front and hooted and hollered and made sure they knew we were present. Like ya do.

I managed to craftily make my way to the very front and sit on the floor out of the way of official cameras and peoples so I could get some good shots. And since I'm white, no one tells me to move. Here is a picture of a group of the English program receiving their diplomas and another while they were saying the Hippocratic Oath...

Afterwards there were pictures pictures and more pictures! We stayed for nearly an hour chatting and snapping every combination of people together. It was great. Smiles abounded, and we were happy to rejoice with new Doctor friends. I'm so very proud of my friends and excited to see where the Lord will take them in their medical careers!

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