HANCEVILLE, Ala. — More than 70 students from the Wallace State Community College Department of Nursing Education recently took the Nightingale Pledge during the pinning ceremony for the August 2018 Associate Degree Nursing graduates. The ceremony marks the end of their education and Wallace State and the beginning of their careers and/or further education.
“This comes the end of our long shift at Wallace, and if there’s anything a good nurse knows the value of, it’s charting and documenting,” said class secretary/treasurer Jennifer Overton, who spoke on behalf of the class. “So, let’s document the last two years together.”
Overton outlined the students first days on campus and how over the past two years they went from being strangers to creating a family unit they depended on for support and encouragement.
“It is clear we learned to take care of our patients by first learning to take care of each other,” Overton said. “I feel honored and proud to speak on behalf of this amazing class as this class is truly one of a kind.”
Overton also thanked the Nursing department’s faculty for imparting their knowledge and teaching them to be the best nurse they can be.
“You are the nurses that we aspire to be; thank you for holding us to the highest standard of excellence,” Overton said. “We learned that a nurse is not only a medical professional, but is also a vigilant advocate for their patient’s well-being. A nurse is a counselor, educator, friend and confidant. We learned that a nurse is truly the heart of healthcare.”
She encouraged her classmates to continue to grow and learn and to never give up, even when times get hard.
“We all know that nursing can be a tough profession,” Overton said. “So, in the future when the shift gets long and the job gets hard and that little voice inside your head says I can’t do this, you need to make a fist and crush it because that is a lie. You can, you will and you did, and we’re here tonight celebrating it.
“Together, we take our final step into our future into the unlimited potential that we are prepared for and more than capable of as Wallace State nursing graduates.”
During the ceremony, class vice president Seth Boutwell was recognized as the Nightingale Award winner. Reading remarks from faculty who choose the award nominees and recipients, Hoover said Boutwell was “known for kindness, work ethic and exemplary clinical performance.” They noted he was always ready for classes and clinicals, is extremely articulate and represents the college and nursing professions with exemplary behavior. During his final two semesters, Boutwell also worked as an LPN, having passed the PN-NCLEX national board exam after completing his third semester in the program.
Other nominees for the award were Davis Fultz, Mary Kelley, Ashlee Wood and Mallory Wood.
Wallace State President Dr. Vicki Karolewics shared her congratulations with the students.
“I just want to say congratulations and we are so proud of you; it has been such a long journey,” Dr. Karolewics said. “But I can tell you that in the last two years of my life, I’ve spent a great deal of time with my son at UAB in the neuro unit and the neuro intensive care unit where I’ve seen a number of Wallace State nursing graduates in action as they cared for my son. That is the most comforting feeling to know that a Wallace State nurse is taking care of someone that I love so much, because I know that he’s in good hands. And you will provide that care for someone else.”
The Wallace State Nursing program is currently accepting applications for entry in Spring 2019. The deadline to turn in applications is Sept. 1. Visit www.wallacestate.edu/nursing or call 256.352.8411 for more information.