OHSU Doernbecher holds graduation ceremony for patients in its Hospital School Program

06/06/12  Portland, Ore.

The Hospital School Program helps childhood cancer patients keep up with their studies and stay connected to their local school districts throughout Oregon.

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Oregon Health & Science University Doernbecher Children's Hospital will hold a graduation ceremony for pediatric cancer and hematology patients currently receiving treatment and participating in its K-12 Hospital School Program.

Teachers, volunteers and school staff will dress in full graduation regalia designed and constructed by students and staff. 

The children, wearing black construction-paper mortar boards with yarn tassels and decorated hospital gowns, will be called up one by one to receive their OHSU Doernbecher diplomas as their teachers extol their many achievements.

At the end of the ceremony, the children will march through the cancer unit to the tune of “Pomp and Circumstance,” visiting six stations where nurses and staff will hand out prizes and treats, and congratulate them on their success.

“We know these kids and their families are missing out on their end-of-school parties and activities, and this ceremony is just one way in which we try to create as much fun and normalcy as possible,” said Debra Mettler, a teacher in the Hospital School Program at OHSU Doernbecher.


Thursday, June 7, 10:45 a.m.


OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital, 700 S.W. Campus Drive, Portland, OR 97239


The Hospital School Program at OHSU Doernbecher is operated by Multnomah Education Service District (MESD) with funding from the Oregon Department of Education. School staff provides small-group, individualized and bedside instruction, depending on the medical and academic needs of the student, from kindergarten through high school. MESD is a regional cooperative that provides instruction, special education, school health and social services, technology and administrative support to eight public school districts in Multnomah County and other agencies throughout Oregon.

About OHSU Doernbecher Children's Hospital

OHSU Doernbecher Children's Hospital ranks among the top 50 children's hospitals in the United States.* It ranks 36th nationally for NIH-awarded pediatric research funding among children's hospitals affiliated with an academic medical center**, and is one of only 22 NIH-designated Child Health Research Centers in the country.

OHSU Doernbecher cares for tens of thousands of children each year from Oregon, Southwest Washington and around the nation, resulting in more than 175,000 discharges, surgeries, transports and outpatient visits annually.

Nationally recognized OHSU Doernbecher physicians and nurses provide a full range of pediatric care in the most patient- and family-centered environment, and travel throughout Oregon and southwest Washington, providing specialty care to more than 3,000 children at more than 150 outreach clinics in 15 locations. In addition, OHSU Doernbecher delivers neonatal and pediatric critical care consultation to community hospitals statewide through its state-of-the-art telemedicine network.

* U.S. News & World Report 2012-13 Best Children's Hospitals
** Children's Hospital Association (formerly the National Association of Children's Hospitals and Related Institutions)