Graduates at white house
Graduates from the class of 2020 celebrate at a White House commencement ceremony on May 22. (Courtesy The White House)

MCG 2020 graduate honored at the White House

Dr. Rebecca DeCarlo, a 2020 graduate of the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University, was honored at a White House Commencement Ceremony on Friday, May 22.

DeCarlo was one of only 20 students, and the only medical student, nationwide to be invited. President Trump honored recent graduates who had played a part in the country’s COVID-19 response.

DeCarlo, who is headed to Carolinas Medical Center and Atrium Health in Charlotte for a neurosurgery residency that begins in July, was a student at MCG’s Southeast Campus in Savannah/Brunswick and worked with the Coastal Georgia Health District to assist with their contact tracing efforts. She and her fellow volunteers often made 100 calls a day to the community, regarding quarantine protocols and answering questions.

Although she and her fellow students had been pulled from clinical rotations because of coronavirus precautions, they wanted to find a way to help by reducing the incidence of disease and burden on hospitals, DeCarlo says. She worked with other medical students to develop a training manual detailing how contact tracing had been developed in the Coastal Georgia Health District. That manual was designed to be adapted for use in public health districts across the state.

The medical school also used the manual in its newly created pandemic medicine course, which trained 186 medical students and several faculty, including MCG’s Dean, Dr. David C. Hess.

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Written by
Jennifer Hilliard Scott

Jennifer Hilliard Scott is Director of Communications at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University. Contact her to schedule an interview on this topic or with one of our experts at 706-721-8604 or

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Woman smiling Written by Jennifer Hilliard Scott

Jagwire is your source for news and stories from Augusta University. Daily updates highlight the many ways students, faculty, staff, researchers and clinicians "bring their A games" in classrooms and clinics on four campuses in Augusta and locations across the state of Georgia.

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