Sixty-seven nursing students, along with family and friends celebrated their completion of the nursing program at Butler Community College Thursday evening at the nurses pinning ceremony.
“Each of you has achieved an important milestone,” said Anita Mills, dean of nursing.
She told those in attendance a little about the history of the pinning ceremony, which originated in the 1860s in London by Florence Nightengale.
“This night has come about with tremendous determination and perseverance,” Mills said.
The students also were given an opportunity to thank those who supported them, as well as the faculty before hearing from the speaker.
While they usually have a nurse speak to the group, this year Butler President Jackie Vietti served as the guest speaker because she will be retiring from the college in a few days.
“As the Mama Grizzly, I’m going to give you a shout out and woot,” she told the students.
She went on to talk about the what, why and how of what they are doing.
She began with a quote by Abraham Lincoln, “Whatever you are be a good one.” But she changed it slightly to “be a great one.”
“How do you be a great nurse?” Vietti asked the group.
She thought the answer was based on the observations of John Carter from Harvard, “unless you engage the heart first you will never engage the head.”
“You have the best possible foundation to have this balance between the head and the heart,” she said. “Promise me always that you will have that balance between head and heart. You have the opportunity to contribute to your profession in ways other nurses may not do.”
She showed a short video on how to treat others and be kind and forgiving.
“I want you to know how proud of you we are,” Vietti concluded.
Following her speech, Vietti was presented with an honorary pin, pinning her best honorary nurse.
Before receiving their pins, Class President Amy Perrault shared a few thoughts with her fellow graduates.
“What sets us apart is going beyond the obvious,” she said. “The confidence we have gained is invaluable. As we become more confident, focus on the caring side of our nursing practice. Our class has shown to me to be full of very caring people.”
Class Vice President Kendra Maikori then led the group in the International Council of Nurses’ Pledge.
Three students also were recognized with BSNA Awards, including Vanessa Jones, Maikori and Shannon Welsh. Other students were recognized for their volunteer work with the American Red Cross then each of the candidates for nursing received their pins.