Graduation season is always a special time for the Alumni Association. On May 5 and 6, I
had the pleasure of attending Convocation and Commencement ceremonies for forty-two
new graduates of the Doha campus. On May 27 and 28, I had the same privilege for
the ninety-six from the New York campus.
I enthusiastically welcomed the graduates into our Alumni Association and encouraged them to become active members. We are a very select organization: there are
approximately eight million physicians in the world, but only 5,700 can claim membership in our association. We now have 138 new members, representing some of
the brightest and best-trained physicians anywhere.
From the Commencement stages, I had panoramic views of the graduates and their
families who were sitting in the audience beaming with a sense of accomplishment
and pride. I reflected on memories of my own graduation thirty-five years ago and
felt an overwhelming sense of gratitude and appreciation for a fulfilling and rewarding career in medicine.
During the festivities, a central theme repeated by several speakers was the importance of mentorship, as students and faculty expressed their appreciation of its vital
role and how it shaped their lives. Alumni, too, expressed that same sentiment
countless times during Reunion 2014 last October. Undoubtedly, there is an enduring tradition of mentorship at Weill Cornell. In fact, in my opinion, the tradition of
mentorship is what makes it the very special institution it is today.
Another recent highlight was the Award of Distinction Dinner, where we honored Steven
Gabbe, MD ’69. An internationally acclaimed expert in obstetrics and gynecology, Dr.
Gabbe has held leadership positions at six prestigious institutions, including as dean of
Vanderbilt University and senior vice president and CEO of Ohio State University’s Wexner
Medical Center. The event was a double celebration for me, since Dr. Gabbe was nominated by my friend and classmate Mark Landon, MD ’80, chief of obstetrics and gynecology at
The criteria for the Award of Distinction has remained the same since the first was given to
William Sharp McCann in 1949: it goes to an individual “who demonstrates exceptional
achievement in the areas of education, research, or patient care and who has brought honor
and acclaim to the Medical College.” The next time you’re on campus, be sure to check out
the plaque, in the corridor leading to Griffis Faculty Club, listing all sixty-seven honorees—
certainly a great source of pride for Weill Cornell.
I hope you enjoyed your summer. The Alumni Association was thrilled to welcome the
Class of 2019 in August!
Spencer Kubo, MD ’80
President, WCMC Alumni Association
News of Medical
College and Graduate
Spencer Kubo, MD ’80