The LAU Centennial Year’s Cohort of Healers

The Gilbert and Rose-Marie Chagoury School of Medicine celebrates the hooding of its 12th batch of medical graduates and honors residents and fellows.

By Sara Makarem

The 12th cohort with Dean Sola Aoun Bahous.

With joy, pride and hopeful anticipation for the future, medical graduates marked a significant milestone in their professional careers as compassionate healers in a hooding ceremony on June 1, 2024, on the Byblos campus. 

Commemorating the graduation of its 12th cohort, the Gilbert and Rose-Marie Chagoury School of Medicine conferred 65 doctor of medicine degrees, 27 resident diplomas, seven fellowship diplomas and five post-doctoral research certificates during the ceremony attended by LAU President Michel E. Mawad, Provost George E. Nasr, the school’s Dean Sola Aoun Bahous and faculty members, LAU leadership, school deans, family and friends.

Also present from the LAU Medical Center–Rizk Hospital was Associate CMO Daniel Mahfoud, and from the LAU Medical Center–Saint John’s Hospital, CMO Wadih Ghaname and CEO Sally Al-Rabbaa.


Dr. Michele Cherfane, an associate professor and master of ceremonies, said that the event signifies “the culmination of years of hard work, dedication, and perseverance” and honors those who have devoted themselves to the noble pursuit of medicine.


President Mawad, himself a physician, shared with the graduates the fundamental truths inherent in the profession and emphasized that this transition to becoming a practicing physician involves a trajectory of decision-making that will challenge “not only your knowledge but also your ethics and conscience.”

He went on to express LAU’s pride in each and every graduate, knowing that they will be “its best representative in the ranks of the profession and the community.”

Congratulating the residents and fellows for persevering under tough conditions and challenges, he said “My pride in you is only matched by my high expectations of great success and brilliant careers for you.”


In her address to the class of 2024, Dean Sola Aoun Bahous commended the graduates’, residents’ and fellows’ exceptional talents.

“As you stand on the threshold of what I believe will be a remarkable future, remember that it is you who are crafting the next chapter of LAU’s story,” she said.

“You are the architects of not only LAU’s next century but also of a healthcare landscape that will benefit immensely from your contributions,” she added.


The program also featured a virtual keynote speech by Professor Josip Car, head of the School of Life Course and Population Sciences at King’s College in the UK who remarked that the graduates had “been equipped with a strong foundation based on American health education,” and that “the rigorous curriculum has prepared you well for the challenges ahead.”

“Whether you choose to complete your specialty training in Lebanon, pursue your specialties in the US, or seek fellowships in Europe,” he added, “your high match rate in the US clearly reflects academic proficiency and the comprehensive education you have received.”

Dr. Car praised the graduates’ excellence and commitment to volunteer work, which extended far beyond academics and demonstrated their dedication to humanitarian efforts.


Following the hooding, Clinical Assistant Professor and Assistant Dean for Medical Education Nadia El Asmar guided the graduates in reciting the Hippocratic Oath.


Class valedictorian Dr. Ali Toufaily delivered a heartwarming speech to his classmates while acknowledging the contributions of his mentors “for imparting the art of listening and silent humility.”


Similarly, Dr. Anthony Al Alam, representing the residents and fellows, offered resonating advice to his colleagues who are transitioning to residency and took the opportunity to thank the dean, the Graduate Medical Education team and his parents for their endless guidance and support. He urged his fellows to “carry forward LAU’s spirit, which embodies integrity, compassion and resilience” in everything they do.

Awards were given out by the dean and faculty to those who excelled in the following areas:

  • Leadership: Dr. Majd Rachid
  • Professionalism: Dr. Jana Dib El Jalbout
  • Innovation: Dr. Wissam Osseily
  • Research: Dr. Elio Issa
  • Community Service: Dr. Edwin Feghali and Dr. Philippe Saad
  • Academic Excellence: Dr. Ali Toufaily