ORLANDO, Fla. - Of the more than 235,000 degrees awarded by the University of Central Florida, 36 were awarded Friday to the UCF School of Medicine charter class.
The Florida Legislature approved the program in 2006, and $70 million in donations built the 170,000-square-foot facility at Lake Nona.
Four years ago, Channel 9 met professional violinist Will Kang, who is now Dr. Will Kang, and prepared for a life's work of healing.
"I knew the moment I got to UCF, it was the perfect place for me. I still feel that way," Kang said.
Sarina Amin first shared her story four years ago about the serious illnesses that took her grandparents.
"I couldn't really do anything to help them. And knowing if I went to medical school, I could be in a position to help somebody else's grandparents," Amin said.
Now, Dr. Sarina Amin said her training at the school's state-of-the-art facility allows her to begin her career. Amin and her classmates have all landed positions with hospitals, some in central Florida and others at medical centers across the country.
Each of the students received full $160,000 scholarships. The donors gave the new physicians their diplomas.
The med school graduates are already giving back. They will establish a permanent $300,000 scholarship fund at the school.
"I am pleased to recommend that the doctor of medicine degree be awarded to these students," said Dean Dr. Deborah German.
Administrators said their grades were so good, they could have attended any medical school they wanted.
Amin said UCF was the start of something big.
"I knew that we would be making history and creating a medical school from the ground up," Amin said.
After the now former students recited the Hippocratic Oath, UCF President John Hitt had some words for the graduates.
"May God bless you. Go Knights," said Hitt.