Badge Award Ceremony

“We are not a low ranking Faculty created just to satisfy some people’s whims, we are a Faculty with tradition”

- Fausto J. Pinto

Auditorio João Lobo Antunes

On Saturday 15 May, the Badge Award Ceremony took place in the João Lobo Antunes Great Auditorium. It is an event that takes place every year as part of the Queima de Lisboa festivities, with the aim of celebrating the end of the Integrated Master Degree in Medicine.

The Ceremony aims to honour the finalists who now say goodbye to the Faculty, and who see this event as one of the last occasions to experience and celebrate the academic spirit with colleagues and friends that mean so much to them and had such an impact on them throughout the degree. It is also where special moments from these six years are remembered and shared with the other Faculty students, who, one day, will also be in the same situation.

Professor Fausto Pinto a discursar

The ceremony was attended by the Director of FMUL, Professor Fausto Pinto.

“Good morning everyone!

It is a great pleasure to be here with you. I want to greet in particular our finalists, all Faculty students and all those who work at this great place: lecturers, employees and, obviously, the students here on the main stage.

I want to congratulate you on achieving this goal. This is a special day for those who have come this far, through their effort, dedication and resilience. However, they did it in a great Faculty.

I would like to start by saying that you chose what, without any bias on my part, is the best profession in the world. Obviously, we're talking to each other here, but I say this on any stage. And why did you choose the best profession in the world? Because it is the profession that is dedicated to the others. We are the defenders, the guardians of ethical integrity in caring for others, using principles of altruism and generosity, always caring for others on an ethical and irreproachable basis. And it also creates a great deal of envy in relation to our profession. Today, more than ever, what being a doctor means, what is medicine, is well understood by the population around the world. Perhaps in a violent way through this pandemic that no one expected and that also conditioned a lot of what we did and had to do over the last few months. But in a way it reinforces our role as doctors and what Medicine represents.

I like to quote a deceased Brazilian Professor, who was Minister of Health in Brazil, Professor Adib Jatene. He said that “the doctor aims to cure, if he cannot cure, he must relieve, if he cannot relieve, he must fix. Doctors are people specialists”. And we, in fact, are people specialists. Ours is a Faculty with a long tradition. It started as early as 1825 with the Royal Medical-Surgical School, later the Medical-Surgical School. And in 1911, it became the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Lisbon. We are not a low ranking Faculty created just to satisfy some people’s whims, we are a Faculty with tradition. We are a Faculty that has a backbone and that will continue to have it, ready to receive and train you here.

And I have excellent news for you. Yesterday, I received the final results of the National Access Exam. Among the eight medical schools in this country, we came first, and that makes me very proud of you. As you know, there has always been some controversy about the entry grades. This shows that, as I have said many times, in any race what counts is the end and not the beginning. It's not who gets out of the marathon first, it's who gets to the end.

I was very pleased when I received this result yesterday, and I have shared it with your President of the Students Association. Congratulations to all of you! I am sure that you will do exactly as the others did, because you are trained based on those principles that I spoke about initially.

And here we act upon principles and values. Even in difficult times, this is where values and principles are important, this is where the backbone of both people and institutions stands out. And throughout this year, we tried to accomplish that and we did it and it was not one, or two, or three people, we all did it: the Faculty board, employees, professors, and, above all, you. I have said this many times publicly, I am immensely proud of your impeccable attitude.

I like to quote a great Spanish philosopher, José Ortega y Gasset, who wrote that "it is only possible to move forward when looking far, it is only possible to move forward when we think big". That is what we will continue to do in this Faculty. So, without further ado, I want to give you a big hug and congratulate you. Today is a festive day, even in difficult conditions. It is a day that will remain in your lives forever. You will remember it thirty, forty, or fifty years from now. You will complete another stage on your path, the path of becoming a doctor. The path at the service of our communities, at the service of others. I finish as I started, this is the way to serve the best profession in the world.

Congratulations and, please, be happy”.

For this group of FMUL students, a new challenge is now underway. They will sit a final exam, the National Ranking Exam, which will allow them to choose a Specialty.

The path will always be one of learning and sharing for those who leave, but also for those watching these finalists.

We wish you all the greatest success. Because your success is also ours!