KOKOMO, Ind. — Indiana University Kokomo welcomed more than 100 new health care professionals to the field, in recognition and pinning ceremonies hosted by the Division of Allied Health Sciences and the School of Nursing.
The Division of Allied Health Sciences recognized 16 Bachelor of Science in Medical Imaging Technology (MIT) and 12 Associate of Science in Radiography graduates. The School of Nursing honored 34 Bachelor of Science in Nursing students, as well as 66 R.N. to B.S.N. students, during its pinning ceremony Thursday (May 5).
John Hughey, chairperson of the Division of Allied Health Sciences, noted that all MIT graduates seeking employment have found jobs. Dean Linda Wallace commended nursing graduates for a first-time pass rate of 95 percent on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) required to be a registered nurse.
Chancellor Susan Sciame-Giesecke congratulated the graduates, calling Commencement events the best time of the year on campus.
“I love these days, because you get to see people’s dreams come true,” she said.
Nursing students chose Assistant Dean Lynda Narwold as their guest speaker, honoring her as she retires after more than 30 years of teaching at IU Kokomo. She reflected on the beginnings of her career, when she graduated from high school and had to choose if she wanted to be a nurse, or a teacher.
“I had no idea at that time where nursing would take me,” she said. “Now I look back and see what a wonderful decision I made. I can’t imagine my life without some kind of nursing in it.”
She encouraged graduates to follow the Five Cs of Caring, which are commitment, conscience, competence, compassion, and confidence, and add a sixth C, code of ethics.
“Go above and beyond normal expected measures,” she said. “You must have a sense of moral values. You must hold yourselves to a high standard of excellence, even when performing everyday tasks. Provide patients with kind and considerate treatment. Find a mentor to help you become the kind of nurse you want to be.
I can only hope you will be as fulfilled in your professional life as I have been in mine,” Narwold said.
Kyle Wyant, Windfall, looks forward to working as a nurse, with a job lined up at Community Howard Regional Health.
“I’m very excited and ready to start my professional career,” he said. “I’m ready to take the next step.”
Adriana Zimmer is excited to begin a new life with her family, moving from Indianapolis to Georgia or Tennessee. She appreciates their patience while she completed her degree.
“They understand that when you are a nurse, you are a nurse for life,” she said. “It’s who you are.”
She also commended her classmates for their support.
“The camaraderie is the best part of nursing school,” she said. “We all worked together as a team, we brought each other up. Nobody was left behind.”
Hughey urged students to always keep patient care foremost in everything they do.
“It is with great pride that we welcome you as professional peers,” he said. “You have accomplished more than many have ever contemplated.”
Stephanie Shaffer has started looking for her dream job working in ultrasound, after completing her MIT degree. It was especially meaningful to her that her 11-week-old son was at the ceremony.
“Graduating means a lot to me, especially since I had a baby during the program,” the McCordsville resident said. “That’s kind of a big deal. It’s awesome to finally have my bachelor’s degree.”
Elizabeth Hubenthal is pleased to start her career in MRI, with a job already lined up at a clinic where she did her clinicals.
“I’m excited to be done,” she said. “I like MRI because it’s very detailed, and you get to spend a lot of time with patients.”
She chose the program not just for its location in her hometown, but for its reputation.
“It’s one of the best programs in the state, so it was an easy choice,” Hubenthal said.
Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.