Two students are first KU BSN graduates of Butler-KU partnership

EL DORADO - Butler Community College recognized 57 nursing graduates Thursday evening during its December 2018 Pinning Ceremony. The Dec. 13th event was held on Butler’s El Dorado campus. It was a special occasion as Denise Renee Johnson and Ashley Looft, both of Wichita, were recognized as the first two graduates of the new Butler ADN/University of Kansas BSN degree program launched in 2016.
Christy Streeter, Dean of Health, Education and Public Services, presented the two bachelor degree recipients with graduate chords to celebrate their accomplishment. Looft and Johnson had to enter the Butler and KU programs at the same time, simultaneously completing face-to-face instruction at Butler and KU Nursing classes online. They received both their Associate Degree in Nursing and their Bachelor degree in Nursing from Kansas’ two nursing education powerhouses.
The ceremony also included a welcome by Dr. Beth Eagleton, Associate Dean of Nursing and Allied Health, and greetings from Dr. Greg Joyce, Butler Board of Trustee member; Kim Krull, Ph.D., President of Butler Community College; and Lori Winningham, Vice President of Academic Affairs.
Since 1965, hundreds of Butler graduates have received a pin upon graduating with an associate in applied sciences in nursing degree. The pinning practice of nurses began in the late 19th century in London. By 1880, this symbolic rite was brought to Bellevue Hospital in New York City. Since then, the practice has become commonplace at nursing school graduations.
“The Nurses Pinning is a beautiful rite of passage into the industry,” said Dr. Eagleton of the ceremony, her first at Butler after having joined the college in mid-November.
Class President Natasha Rae Nelson of Derby, addressed her fellow classmates, family and faculty. Some wiped tears as Nelson captured various memories of their time together learning various procedures and working hard to excel on exams.
“We come from all backgrounds and cultures and life seasons,” said Nelson. “We are united by the compassion we have for complete strangers.
“The faculty and staff never stopped believing in us and this evening is also a celebration of their support and patience,” Nelson added. She concluded, “Let your light shine, go save lives and leave a huge impact on this world.”
It is anticipated these nursing graduates will follow the same path as each group of nursing graduates have for the past three years -- a 100 percent job placement rate within six months of graduation.
Besides receiving graduate nursing pins, the following recognitions were presented:
American Red Cross
Three graduates were recognized for volunteer efforts by members of the American Red Cross, Central Plains Blood Services Region.
Medical Reserves Corps Award
Four graduates also completed an online program for Public Health Preparedness and Flu Clinic Volunteer work.
 Mentoring Program
Five students were commended by Butler faculty for participating in a mentoring program that enables third and fourth semester nursing students to mentor first and second semester nursing students.
Nursing Graduates by Hometown: (all awards denoted, see award legend below)
Andover – Breonna Aguilar, Lisa Hamlin, Kaely Masterson
Arkansas City – Paige Bates
Augusta – Dustin Henrie, Marcella Kaufman, Emily Mckibben, Madison Potter, M
Belle Plaine – Rachel Call
Derby – Melissa Farney, Natasha Nelson, Class President, BSNA President, +, MR, M, Ky Tran
El Dorado – Emily Kaufman, Sierra Moore
Haysville – Timothy Burleigh, Caitlin Miller, Joseph Thompson, Class Vice President
Maize – Daphone Donesay
Mulvane – Kelly Fells
Park City – Raquel Reece
Rose Hill – Brooke Cziske, +, Taylor Faflick, Sommer McCoy
Wichita – Porsha Adkins, Davis Anyona, Schyler Bell, Jessica Collins, Patricia Conn, Karla Flora, Lucy Gotora, Sara Holt, BSNA Treasurer, Diane Hook, Alyson James, Denise Johnson, BSNA Vice President, KU, +, MR, M, Kristin Journey, Kimberly Korntheuer, Samantha Landrum, Stephanie Landwehr, Ashley Looft, KU, Sidney Melugin, Nicole Miller, and Alice Ngo, MR, Kimdona Nguyen, Tien Pham, Jaeden Randolph, M, Paola Rodriguez, Hannah Roy, Roger Sarenfors, Grant Sheldon, Kyra Stallbaumer, Marc Swink, Kellcie Tinto, Amber Veatch, MR, M, Crystal Warner, Chelsea White, and Andrew Wingo
Out of State
Anchorage, AK. – Lindsey Rountree

KU – Butler ASN graduate and KU Bachelor of Science in Nursing graduate
BSNA – Butler Student Nursing Association officers
+    American Red Cross Recognition
MRC – Medical Reserves Corps Award Recipients
M - Mentoring Recognition

 Butler Community College, an Aspen Institute Top 150 U.S. Community College with nearly 9,000 students, offers nearly 85 degree programs and 30 professional certification programs. The college’s main campus is in El Dorado, but it has centers in five other communities. For more information about Butler, visit www.butlercc.edu, on Facebook and Twitter (@butlercc).