William James College Awards Honorary Degree to Augustus A. White, III, MD, PhD, for Work in Diversity

Dr. White Introduced by Daughter Atina White during 36th Commencement

August 17, 2016

BOSTON – August 17, 2016 – William James College, a leader in educating mental health professionals and the largest graduate psychology program in New England, awarded Augustus A. White, III, MD, PhD, Ellen and Melvin Gordon Distinguished Professor of Medical Education and Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Harvard Medical School (HMS) an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters during the College’s 36th Commencement in June, 2016.

“My dad’s never been a person focused on his own needs…he’s always focused on how he can improve the lives of others,” said Atina White, Life Coach, while introducing her father for the honorary degree. “After retiring from surgery at 65, he now still works 7 days a week fighting for cultural competency and shedding light on health care disparities nationwide.”

Throughout his career, Dr. White has dedicated himself to issues of cultural diversity and disparity in health care, seeking to ensure all patients are treated fairly and equally. He is the Director of the Culturally Competent Care Education Program at HMS and the founding President of the J. Robert Gladden Orthopaedic Society, an organization aiming to increase diversity in the orthopaedic profession. He is the author of Seeing Patients: Unconscious Bias in Health Care and a recipient of the Diversity Award by the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.

“The work of Dr. White serves as an inspiration to us all, as stigma and prejudice are significant barriers to access to quality mental health care for all people.” said Nicholas Covino, PhD, President of William James College.


About William James College

Founded in 1974 as an independent graduate college of psychology, William James College is the largest graduate psychology institution in New England, offering degree programs in mental health and applied psychology at the doctoral, master’s and certificate levels. William James College is a leader in educating organizational leaders and mental health professionals who are committed to meeting the needs of our most vulnerable populations and is constantly evolving to meet the needs of a rapidly changing and increasingly diverse society. The College’s highly skilled professionals care for Latinos, Veterans, children, adolescents and families in a variety of settings, including the schools, the courts, the community and the workplace.

About Dr. Augustus White

Augustus A. White, III, MD, PhD, was the Orthopaedic Surgeon-in-Chief at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston, MA, for 13 years. Today, he is the Ellen and Melvin Gordon Distinguished Professor of Medical Education, Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at Harvard Medical School (HMS). Dr. White has served as a Professor of the Harvard/MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology and Director of the Oliver Wendell Holmes Society at HMS. He is currently the Director of the Culturally Competent Care Education Program at HMS.