Fifteen Practical Nursing graduates were honored for their completion of the one-year program at Vance-Granville Community College during a pinning ceremony on July 25 in the Civic Center on the college’s Main Campus.
Upon receiving their diplomas, the graduates are now eligible to sit for the national exam for licensed practical nurses (NCLEX-PN).
Among the Practical Nursing graduates recognized at the ceremony were Reuben Aluoch of Raleigh, Eunice Ayaa of Creedmoor, Christopher Ellis of Wake Forest, Nikitra Hall of Wake Forest, Jason Hurley of Youngsville, Rumana Ibrahim of Raleigh, Cassidy Ivey of Henderson, Tiffany Lemay of Warrenton, Eric Luckenbaugh of Durham, Charles Ngeve of Durham, Joyce Nyaanga of Morrisville, Rose Nyagaka of Raleigh, Wyverta Rawls of Raleigh, Cherrie Satterfield of Rougemont, and Youlanda Simpson of Durham.
Welcoming remarks were offered by Dr. Levy Brown, VGCC’s vice president of academic affairs; Erica Jastrow, the college’s chair of the Nursing Department; and Eunice Ayaa, president of the Practical Nursing Class of 2018.
“Our Nursing program goes all the way back to 1970, almost to the founding of this great institution of which will celebrate 50 years of existence next year,” said Dr. Brown. “Now we are proud to add to that history the Practical Nursing Class of 2018, a diverse group of students from several towns in our region.” While many members of the class have chosen specific nursing specialties for their careers, many also plan to continue their education, he said. He encouraged the graduates to “aspire, accelerate and achieve in every walk of life.”
“With success comes great responsibility,” Jastrow noted in her remarks. “These students will have the responsibility of preparing for a challenging licensing exam. So if they tell you they still have to study, they really are telling you the truth…. I also hope they will take the opportunity to share their success so that others might be inspired to take the same journey they did.”
Ayaa, the class president, offered thanks to the instructors both at VGCC and in the clinical sites where the students received on-the-job experience. “You all have taught us what will help our patients the most,” she said.
“To our family and friends, thank you for listening to us,” she said. “Thank you for letting us perform skills on you. Thank you for lending us money. I hope we will pay them back!” she added, to laughter from the room. “Thank you for helping us accomplish our dreams. We could not have done it without you — not forgetting the North Carolina taxpayers and our donors. Thank you for your generosity, for the scholarships and the financial aid we received when we could no longer work and pay for our tuition. We are so grateful.”
Heather Wilson, Nursing instructor and SimLab Coordinator, shared the story of the distinctive Nursing Pin which was awarded to each student by Jastrow during the ceremony. During the pinning, biographies were read by Kathy Bray, nursing instructor, and Vanessa Ramseur, nursing instructor, presented lamps to the graduates. The story of the lamp was shared by Patsy Pegram, nursing instructor, and the lighting of the lamps was initiated by Brande McIlroy, nursing instructor, while Crystal Senter, nursing instructor, led the Nursing Pledge.
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Above: Graduates honored at the VGCC Practical Nursing pinning ceremony included, first (front) row, from left: Cassidy Ivey, Tiffany Lemay, Joyce Nyaanga and Nikitra Hall; second row, from left: Cherrie Satterfield, Eric Luckenbaugh, Wyverta Rawls; third row, from left: Christopher Ellis, Jason Hurley, Eunice Ayaa, Reuben Alouch, Youlanda Simpson and Charles Ngeve. (VGCC photo)