The day before Commencement, the Mount honored nearly 80 graduates of its prestigious Nursing program at a pinning ceremony.
Fr. Gregoire Fluet, chaplain and director of Campus Ministry, blessed the pins, which were presented to the graduates by chosen family members and friends.
“The journey to become a registered, professional nurse is not an easy one,” said Vidia Saleem, instructor of Nursing, as she welcomed the Class of 2022 and their families. “These students have just reached a milestone. They are now ready to make the transition from student nurse to graduate nurse.”
Christine Berté, dean of the School of Nursing, urged the graduates to “take your knowledge, your compassion, and your enthusiasm, and make this profession better.”
Thomas “TJ” Coyne, president of the Student Nursing Association, offered his reflections on the group’s journey to becoming nurses.
“I’d like to express how proud I am of my fellow classmates, for persevering through all the challenges we have faced over the last four years,” he said. “Our great professors have gifted us the tools we need to be successful nurses. Now it’s up to us to build a better world.”
The ceremony’s keynote speaker, Linda Kelly, assistant professor of Nursing, discussed how the COVID-19 pandemic challenged the Class of 2022. The nursing class soon adopted the motto “Stay positive, but test negative,” she explained.
Kelly left the new graduates with some important words of wisdom: “As you enter the profession of nursing, find your voice and take yourself off mute. Advocate for those who cannot speak for themselves.”
New nurse practitioners honored at ceremony
The previous week, nearly 30 students from the Nurse Practitioner program were honored at a White Coat Ceremony.
The ceremony reflected the transition of the nurses to the professional nurse practitioner role. Nurse practitioners are advanced practice nurses who provide high quality healthcare services. They can diagnose, treat, and prescribe across a wide range of health problems.
Fr. Fluet closed out the ceremony with the Blessing of the Hands. As nurse practitioners, he noted, the graduates’ hands are their most important healing tool.