Medical students at the University of Minnesota pledged to “honor all indigenous ways of healing historically marginalized by Western medicine” and fight “white supremacy, colonialism, gender binary, ableism and all forms of oppression.”
The move has many questioning whether the university is embracing shamanism as equally legitimate to Western science.
In a video from the white coat ceremony, which was led by associate dean for undergraduate education Dr. Robert Englander, students are seen reciting a pledge that has them “commit to uprooting the legacy and perpetuation of structural violence deeply embedded within the health care system.”
“The most incredible thing about this clip is that the doctor almost certainly doesn’t believe in what he’s saying,” anti-critical race theory activist Christopher Rufo wrote. “But he submits anyway—because the institutional powers now require otherwise intelligent people to falsify their own beliefs and repeat the left-wing copypasta.”
As part of their oath, students also partook in a “land acknowledgement” in which they said the land upon which the university sits used to belong to the Dakota American Indians.
“This acknowledgement is not enough,” however, because the students must also “recognize inequities built by past and present traumas rooted in white supremacy, colonialism, the gender binary, ableism and all forms of oppression.”
“It is a common practice at medical schools in the United States to build upon the intent of the Hippocratic Oath to promote humility, integrity, and beneficence,” University media relations manager Kat Dodge told Campus Reform. “Each year at the University of Minnesota Medical School, the incoming students work with faculty to write an oath that reflects these core elements, values, and ethics the class aspires to uphold.”
The full pledge reads as the following:
With gratitude, we, the students of the University of Minnesota Twin Cities Medical School Class of 2026, stand here today among our friends, families, peers, mentors and communities who have supported us in reaching this milestone.
Our institution is located on Dakota land. Today many indigenous people throughout the state of Minnesota, including the Dakota and the Ojibwe call the Twin Cities home.
We also recognize this acknowledgment is not enough. We commit to uprooting the legacy and perpetuation of structural violence deeply embedded within the health care system.
We recognize inequities built by past and present traumas rooted in white supremacy, colonialism, the gender binary, ableism and all forms of oppression.
As we enter this profession with opportunity for growth, we commit to promoting a culture of antiracism, listening and amplifying voices for positive change.
We pledge to honor all indigenous ways of healing that have been historically marginalized by western medicine.
Knowing that health is intimately connected with our environment, we commit to healing our planet and communities.
We vow to embrace our role as community members and strive to embody cultural humility.
We promise to continue restoring trust in the medical system and fulfilling our responsibility as educators and advocates.
We commit to collaborating with social, political and additional systems to advance health equity. We will learn from the scientific innovations made before us and pledge to advance and share this knowledge with peers and neighbors.
We recognize the importance of being in community with, and advocating for, those we serve.
We promise to see the humanity in each patient we serve, empathize with their lived experiences, and be respectful of their unique identities.
We will embrace deep and meaningful connections with patients, and strive to approach every encounter with humility and compassion.
We will be authentic and present in our interactions with patients and hold ourselves accountable for our mistakes and biases.
We promise to communicate with our patients in an accessible manner to empower their autonomy.
We affirm that patients are the experts of their own bodies, and will partner with them to facilitate holistic wellbeing.
We will be lifelong learners, increasing our competence in the art and science of medicine.
We recognize our limits and will seek help to bridge those gaps through inter-professional collaboration.
We will prioritize care for the mind, body and soul of not only our patients, but of our colleagues and selves,’ the new students continued.
With this devotion, we will champion our personal wellness and bring the best versions of ourselves to our profession.
We will support one another as we grow as physicians and people,’ they said, before concluding: ‘We are honored to accept these white coats.
In light of their legacy as a symbol of power, prestige and dominance, we strive to reclaim their identity as a symbol of responsibility, humility and loving kindness.’
“The University of Minnesota School of Medicine and Dean Robert Englander have performed a real service for the public by presenting their new version of the Hippocratic oath,” Dr. Stanley Goldfarb, chair of medical watchdog Do No Harm, told Breitbart News. “No longer will the current rage to inculcate critical race theory into medical education be contained in lecture halls at America’s medical schools. It is now there for all to see.” He went on to say:
The students reciting the new pledge must forget about the traditional role of the physician as a healer of the sick and express guilt for the incredible advances in medicine that have enabled huge improvements in longevity and freedom from some of the most devastating childhood diseases. They must fight ‘the gender binary, white supremacy, and colonialism’ among other goals of progressive ideology. Physicians are being called to advocate for every progressive cause rather than focusing on the role assigned to them by society: Heal the sick.
“Most disturbing of all was the call to ‘honor all indigenous ways of healing that have been historically marginalized by Western medicine,’ Goldfarb concluded. “Surely Dean Englander cannot mean that we should embrace Shamanism. Or does he?”
Stay InformedGet up to speed with the threats facing healthcare – and how we’re protecting patients and physicians.
"*" indicates required fields