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ChristianaCare welcomes 105 new resident doctors in Long Coat Ceremony

ChristianaCare welcomed 105 new residents from around the country Friday in a Long Coat Ceremony.

Medical students wear short coats while they’re still in school, but once they graduate and begin their residency, they receive a long doctor’s coat, signifying the transition.

Dr. Brian Levine oversees all graduate and undergraduate medical education at ChristianaCare. He says the influx is a breath of fresh air and a boost.

“This is where they get shaped and molded into the clinician they want to be," Levine said. "And this is an honor that we get to provide that educational foundation for them to do so. It’s exciting, it’s fun, it’s great for the community, it’s great for ChristianaCare, and these residents will get the best education over the next two, three, four or five years.”

The length of residency depends on the program, but Levine says that about 15-20% of all residents continue their careers at ChristianaCare at the end.

Jessica Kerns is one of the new residents in the emergency and internal medicine program. She spent most of her third and fourth year of medical school at ChristianaCare and says it strongly influenced her to stay for her residency.

“Having that experience made me know how special of a place Christiana is and made it so it was my absolute number one choice,” Kerns said.

Grace Clark left the West Coast to join the OBGYN program.

“Through the past week I’ve really learned what a phenomenal place this is regarding diversity as well as health equity and outreach in the community, and I’m really looking forward to getting more involved in those outreach efforts,” Clarke said.

Andrew Blake is a Dover native going into emergency medicine.

“We get to see everything, heart conditions, kidney conditions, brain conditions, giving birth, gunshot wounds," Blake said. "And when I think of medicine I think of head to toe, everything.”

Blake went to Philadelphia’s Thomas Jefferson University as part of the Delaware Institute of Medical Education and Research, or DIMER, program.

Each year, 20 slots at Jeff and another 10 at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine are reserved for Delaware students as an alternative to a state-supported medical school, giving them the opportunity to obtain a high-quality medical education.