Pinning Ceremony Held for Nursing Graduates

May 11 – Hobbs, NM. Non Sibi Sed Omnibus (“Not Self But Others”) is the Latin motto of the New Mexico Junior College nursing program, and on Thursday, May 11, the 2005-2006 graduates of the program were reminded of this sacred commitment one final time.

In an evening candlelight ceremony at Lea County Event Center, 35 students who completed their requirements for graduation from the program—and the college—were presented with pins officially recognizing their new status as graduate nurses in the state of New Mexico.

Attended by about 165 proud family members and friends, the event represented the culmination of several years of what one student described as “very hard but very rewarding work.”

With a theme based on the quote, “A nurse has a touch of an angel’s wings,” the processional was led by some real life angels—the children of several of the graduate students, who were dressed in angel costumes.

Graduate student nurse Benny Thompson, one of six male student nurses graduating, presented plaques to sponsors whose support made the ceremony possible. Sponsors included Dr. & Mrs. Ron Braun, Mr. Lance Caviness, Mr, Shawn Rucker, Mr. Frank Scott, Mr. & Mrs. Kent Shelton, Star Hospice, Mr, Jessie Trujillo, and Ms. Renee Winkles.

Professor of Nursing Tamara James, who served as keynote speaker for the event, lovingly dedicated the ceremony to two women who lost their battles to cancer: her mother, who died last August, and Johanna Pace Davis, who graduated from the nursing program in 2002 and who passed away this past winter. According to James, Davis was “the kind of person and nurse we would all strive to be.”

In her speech, James challenged the graduates with a nine-step plan to live by:

  1. “Strive for excellence and value integrity;
  2. Shape your environment and demonstrate perseverance;
  3. Attempt to improve the lives of others;
  4. Possess a genuine love for people;
  5. Motivate others with inspiration;
  6. Invent the future;
  7. Share the path toward self-discovery;
  8. Never, ever quit learning; and if and when you do, please leave the nursing profession.
  9. Evaluate; ask yourself, families, co-workers, and patients if you made a difference.

If you can’t score a perfect 100 on this assignment,” James said, “then keep redoing it until you can!”

James also presented etched glass plaques to eight students who are members of the national Student Nursing Association, in appreciation of their dedication and service in that organization.

The presentation of graduates, the pinning, and the presentation of certificates were handled by the entire cadre of nursing professors: Karen Cummings, Sondra Hutson, Tamara James, Lynda Knoll, Shelly Murphy, Delores Thompson, and Kim Webb.

The NMJC nursing graduates of the class of 2006 are as follows: Christy Lynn Benson, Koa Jane Rose Buckle, Angela Cooper, Delilah Kay Crowley, Sandra Guevara Cruz, Dustin L. Davis, Loneva J. Davis, Sandra Durham, Skyla Kristine Ericksen, Camille Noel Graves, Shandy Lee Harrel, Jeff Harris, Jennifer K. Heidelberg, Sylvia Flores Hilliard, Tasha Knapp, Teresa Dawn Landrum, Ricardo Marquez, Kari Martin, Bobbie Dee Morrison, Terry Denise Myers, Kristine Elizabeth Perez, Suzanne Michelle Read, Shelley Roberts, Zaqueo Rodriguez, Penny Sellers, Adrienne Leigh Smith, Benny L. Thompson, Ginger Lynn Tice, JoLinda Q. Trujillo, Jennifer Dawn Bizzell Warden, Mandi Shea Wheeler, Vicky Ann Woods, Augusta Woody, Robert Yanez, Miranda Lee Young.

Following the pinning was a candlelight ceremony in which James and Knoll symbolically passed the light of knowledge to graduate students who, in turn, passed it to two freshman in the nursing program, Ted Guzman and Joaquin Rios.

Mary Jane Ward, Dean of Business and Technology, felt the ceremony was “a beautiful way of recognizing those individuals who have gone before them into the nursing profession and of affirming their personal commitment to such an honorable vocation. . . . Celebrations such as this pinning ceremony are milestones that mark special events in our lives and give us pause to recognize the significance of the accomplishments. . . . I applaud the director, the faculty, and the students on this special occasion.”

Director of Allied Health Karen Cummings, who oversees the flagship program, was understandably proud. “These graduate nurses are the future of the nursing profession. Some of these graduates will follow the pathway to be outstanding leaders in nursing. Others will answer the call to be a skillful provider of care, and still others will pursue an advanced education in nursing and return home to NMJC to lead the way in nursing education,” she said. “We are proud of our NMJC graduates. They will always remain a part of our nursing family, and we are welcoming them tonight into our community. We wish each graduate nurse success in finding their calling in nursing.”

New Mexico Junior College, 5317 Lovington Hwy, Hobbs, NM 88240
Phone: 575.392.4510, 1.800.657.6260

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