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Doctors, dentists and dental hygienists celebrated anniversary

Friday 26 September was an anniversary at Health. Almost 200 doctors, dentists and dental hygienists were present to celebrate that 25, 40 or 50 years had passed since they completed their studies at Aarhus University.

General Practitioner Lise Storm clearly remembers the words spoken when she began her medical studies 40 years ago:

"Look at the person sitting next to you; he will probably not be here at the end. Only about 20 per cent of you will be left. And as women have smaller brains than men, it will be even more difficult for them."

Despite these initial comments, Lise Storm completed her medical studies and on the last Friday in September she was present at the jubilee alumnus day at Health along with many of her former classmates. Almost 200 former medical, dentist and dental hygiene students filled AIAS Hall as each of them celebrated their graduation 25, 40 or 50 years ago.

Fifty-year alumni Leo Schlattner and Poul Gjessing also remembered starting their studies at a time when education was for the few.

"We were the very first year group at the Aarhus School of Dentistry. So that year you could still find building materials lying around the corridors because the school only had just been completed. And the rector could see if you were not present. He surveyed the group of students and pointed out those who were missing," says Poul Gjessing, who is today a dental specialist in dental adjustment, and Leo Schlattner, who finished his career as county dentist in Northern Jutland where he worked with handicap dentistry.

Long-term studies on the retreat

In contrast to Lise Storm's time, a higher percentage of students complete their degree programme today. On the other hand, focus is on different things. Medical student Nina Bjerre Andersen describes life as a student today, including study environment surveys and the study progress reform.

"How many of you actually completed your studies within the prescribed time?" she asks the collection of jubilee alumni.

A number of red cards are raised and reveal that well over half of the alumni have taken some detours during their studies. And this is also confirmed by the day’s final speaker. Medical graduate and film director Niels Malmros spent twenty-two-and-a-half years completing his education and training as a medical doctor.

"You could not just start making films. I was under a lot of pressure from my father because the most respectable thing you could be in life was a neurosurgeon. So I started studying medicine and I also became a medical doctor. And I have actually worked in a number of temporary positions at hospitals, though I have to admit that I have now reached the pinnacle of my career in medicine: temporary replacement for the registrar," he says.

The date for next year's jubilee alumnus day has not been fixed, but it will most likely take place in late September. The invitations to next year’s jubilee alumni will be sent out in May/June 2015.