White coat

Daniel Spencer, the associate vice president of Academic Outreach and Extended Programs of Temple College, helps Ian Corley a Temple High School student put on his white coat during the Texas Bioscience Institute White Coat Ceremony held at the Mary Alice Marshall Performing Arts building on the Temple College Campus in Temple.

Josh Quinn | FME News Service

TEMPLE — The Texas Bioscience Institute welcomed its largest junior cohort ever Wednesday, with 94 students receiving their white coats during a ceremony on the Temple College campus.

This group of juniors will join about 60 TBI students who are entering their senior year, making it the largest group of students since the middle college began in 2006, said Daniel Spencer, associate vice president of Academic Outreach and Extended Programs at Temple College.

The Texas Bioscience Institute is on the Scott & West Campus. The institute was created to prepare students to enter STEM fields — science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

Students from throughout Bell County and beyond attend the institute.

Jack Hart, executive director of the Temple Health and Bioscience Economic Development District and director for the Texas Medical Device Alliance in Austin, was the guest speaker. Hart attended the University of Texas at Austin where he received his bachelor’s degree in engineering science, a master’s in engineering mechanics and a doctorate in aerospace engineering.

Hart described the STEM fields as overlapping in multiple ways.

TBI students will be studying biology, anatomy and physiology, chemistry and math.

“Continue to take your studies seriously,” Hart said.

“Maintaining high grades will keep all of your career options open.”

There are students who believe they already know what their careers will look like, but for many, and for various reasons, that career path will change.

The process of learning what’s obtainable is just now beginning, Hart told the students.

“Success can be defined in many ways, each rooted in your own individual set of values,” he said.

Maintaining high standards, good study and work habits, dedication and a strong will are all required for success, he said.

“Good communication skills greatly enhance your chance for success,” Hart said. “Make it a major goal to become an outstanding communicator in both verbal and written media.”

The other half of the communication equation is listening and is equally important, he said.

“At this point in your life it’s important to have one or more mentors, someone you can emulate in some way, someone who is willing to work with you,” Hart said.

Set high character standards for yourself, because without integrity little else matters, he said.

“You are the one single person most responsible for the course of your journey and each milestone along the way,” Hart said.

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