University of Vermont

University Communications

Coates Receives First M.D./Ph.D. Program Degree

Release Date: 05-21-2007

Author: Jennifer Nachbur
Phone: 802/656-7875 Fax: 802-656-3961

At the University of Vermont College of Medicine's commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 20, Matthew Coates of the Class of 2007 became the first graduate of UVM's M.D./Ph.D. physician-scientist program. College of Medicine Interim Dean John P. Fogarty, M.D., officiated at the ceremony, where 97 students received medical degrees. Lori Arviso Alvord, M.D., associate dean for student and multicultural affairs and assistant professor of surgery at Dartmouth Medical School, delivered the commencement address, titled “Healing: Wisdom from the Native American World,” which focused on the meaning of healing from a Native American perspective.

Established in 2001, the UVM M.D./Ph.D. program offers intensive physician-scientist training and accepts only four students per year. A native of Montpelier, Vt., Coates is one of three children of Washington County, Vt., physician John Coates, M.D., to receive a medical degree from UVM. His sister Anne also received her medical degree on May 20. In 2006, Coates received the Dean Joseph B. Warshaw Scholarship Award in recognition of his work to understand the specialized nerves that line the intestines and play a role in disorders such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome. He will serve an internal medicine residency at Fletcher Allen Health Care.

In addition to the 97 medical degrees granted at this year's commencement ceremony, 14 students received Ph.D. degrees in areas including Anatomy and Neurobiology, Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology, Pharmacology and Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, on May 20.