Butler Community College celebrated graduates of its nursing program on Thursday evening with a pinning ceremony.
“On behalf of the Board of Trustees I would like to welcome you all,” said Trustee Jim Wilson. “Speaking for the board, we congratulate you and give you best wishes.”
Following congratulations from Wilson, Butler’s Interim President Dr. Karla Fisher and Interim Vice President of Academic Affairs Jay Moorman, the students were addressed by Butler nursing faculty member Janice Jones.
“Good evening,” she said. “Several weeks ago I asked you to respond to an anonymous survey.”
From the survey responses, she found out about students’ commute times to class, jobs, families and college funding.
Jones noted a number of students were using student loans to pay for their education, and student loan debt in America has reached $1 trillion.
“I believe that all of us here can fight this pending economic bubble,” said Jones, who challenged the graduates to give back when they are able to do so. “Make the choice, in some way, to make a difference in the lives of those who follow you.”
Jones also shared several students’ reasons for wanting to become a nurse.
“You’re here tonight because you had a goal and you worked hard,” she said. “Welcome to the nursing profession.”
After hearing from Jones, Class President Danielle Lutz addressed her fellow graduates.
“Since we have reached the end of the beginning, it is only fitting that we reflect,” she said.
Lutz reflected on nursing orientation, hours spent studying, tests, clinicals and assisting patients.
“I suggest that as we embark on a new beginning we remember this,” she said. “Enjoy tonight and celebrate the accumulation of knowledge.”
After Lutz was done speaking, Chris Summers, class vice president, led the graduates in reciting the International Council of Nurses’ Pledge.
Before pins were presented, photos of each graduate were shown, and BSNA, Professionalism in Nursing and Red Cross awards were presented to some of the graduates.
“Congratulations, class of 2013,” said Lutz.