|RN Students recite the "Nightingale Pledge" during the RN Pinning Ceremony held at the McGavick Conference Center at Clover Park Technical College on Aug. 23.|
Myra Griffin, director of nursing at CPTC, led the ceremony, which featured a graduation march, candle lighting ceremony, recognition of students and faculty, recitation of the "Nightingale Pledge," and the pinning.
Dr. John Walstrum, president of the college, opened the event with a speech to the graduates.
"It's an honorable profession, one of helping, healing and service," said Walstrum. "No doubt you folks have demonstrated that compassion as you have pursued your degree. Ultimately this profession will bring you some joy in your life."
Wendy Fordam was elected by the students as faculty speaker for the event. Her speech was punctuated by a thoughtful description of the role of a registered nurse in a patient's life.
"Being an RN is not about giving medication. It's about being able to care for people when they are at their very worst. When they are at their weakest and most vulnerable. It is about giving a patient everything you have for eight to twelve hours even though sometimes they seem unappreciative and barely acknowledge when you walk in the room. And then going back and doing the same thing again the next day," said Fordham.
The ceremony was held in honor of 20 graduates who have all previously graduated from a Licensed Practical Nursing program and completed 500 hours working as an LPN. The CPTC RN program lasts one year and includes classroom time and more than 400 clinical hours. The next step for the graduates is passing the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses. The exam can last up to six hours, and passing is necessary to work as an RN.
The elected student speaker was Christina Yoon. She recognized the work of the faculty over the year and recounted stories of trials and tribulations for students.
"They did all of this while recovering from broken bones, abdominal surgery, beating cancer, surviving deaths in the family and while visiting their babies in NICU. In my mind, my classmates are nothing short of heroic," said Yoon. "I'm humbled when I think about the incredible individuals each of you are. From each other we've learned that it's OK to ask for help and that every once in a while you just really need a good cry. In helping each other through school we didn't just learn how to be nurses. We learned life skills. We learned how to be better human beings."
To learn more about CPTC's RN programs visit www.cptc.edu/rn.