2017 Quinnipiac University Undergraduate Commencement – Nursing

2017 Quinnipiac University Undergraduate Commencement – Nursing


Good afternoon I’m pleased to declare
Quinnipiac University’s 2017 commencement exercises for the School of
Nursing officially open would everyone please stand for the
invocation which should be delivered by Reverend Jordan Lenihan Catholic
chaplain commencement comes from the Latin word Co meaning with and Mensa
meaning table in the medieval times it marked the moments in which students
having finished their academic program no longer sat at the table with the
other students but instead said at the table with the other faculty with those
who had finished the program it word the word means beginning but it also has
this meaning the sense of ending but then again as we’ve been reminded a few
years ago by a contemporary American philosopher every new beginning is
another beginnings end and so as it is time for you to go out into the world
the time for you to go back to the place where you will be from I invite you to
realize that when you come to this closing time this time of new beginnings
you didn’t come of your own you came because so many people have loved and
supported you so please bow your heads and in your own way I would invite all
of you especially our soon-to-be graduates to just think of all of those
who brought you to this place into this space all of those who with their love
and their support through the determination and their effort made this
moment possible and in your heart thank God and may God bless you and bless us
as we begin this School of Nursing commencement amen please be seated I’d like to take a moment to acknowledge
the platform party which includes trustees university administrators and
Representatives University clergy and deans as well as our speaker an honorary
degree recipient whom you’ll meet shortly it’s now my honor to present dr.
John L Leahy president of Quinnipiac University who will bring you greetings
on behalf of the university community thank you good afternoon ladies and
gentlemen and a warm welcome to all of you on this joyous occasion to our
graduates the class of 2017 from our School of Nursing I want to add a
special welcome and my heartiest congratulations to each and every one of
you during your years at Quinnipiac you have made all of us very proud while
social scientists and the media often portray your generation as excessively
self-centered and less concerned about helping others the quarter P act class
of 2017 has clearly just proven that characterization more than any other
class the class of 2017 has volunteered on hundreds of projects to raise money
for the sick and the impoverished and to help those who are less fortunate many
of our graduates participate in community service projects to respond to
the needs of local national and international communities the big event
is a student-run project that brought together more than 1500 students this
spring to provide direct services such as cleanup and beautification projects
for local public parks and other help for nonprofit organizations
philanthropic events such as q thon Relay for Life and blood drives engaged
thousands of students in raising money and supplies for Children’s Hospital the
American Cancer Society and the Red Cross many of our athletic teams
participated in dr. Seuss day by reading dr. Seuss stories to children at local
schools libraries and preschools and our 19th eternities and sororities
participated in community service projects including service at elementary
and nonprofits and they raised thousands of dollars local and global charities
many of today’s graduates have also traveled nationally and internationally
to Nicaragua Guatemala Barbados and the Dominican Republic to work with
community members confronting challenges that they faced including working with
rural school teachers and health care workers families of children with
special needs small business owners and grassroots organizations the class of
2017 also excelled academically 70 awards will be given out this weekend
honoring seniors for their outstanding success in the classroom and this class
has also achieved an extremely high graduation rate and the highest levels
ever that is the highest levels in the history of this University of cum laude
magna cum laude and summa cum laude Academic Honor congratulations a record number of you are also going on
to pursue graduate degrees in various fields of study including law and
medical schools and I’m sure in this audience many Doctor of Nursing Practice
as well as a variety of PhD programs today’s graduates also displayed
outstanding leadership within the Quinnipiac community and no one better
exemplifies the leadership role that you took on than Joey Mulaney who served as
your student body president this year I very much enjoyed working with Joey
particularly in his role as student representative on the University’s Board
of Trustees class of 2017 as you look back on all that you’ve accomplished I
am sure that you agree with me that you would not be graduating today if we were
not for the help of support of two very important groups groups that follow
Jordan referenced earlier the faculty at Quinnipiac and your families so
graduates please rise and express your appreciation to the faculty in front of
you and your families seen it all around you class of 2017 you have certainly left
your mark on Quinnipiac University and for that we thank you and I predict that
you will leave an even greater mark on the world that awaits you again
congratulations and best wishes to each and every one of you I now ask Mary blanks in’ Cynthia
Barrera and John Lahey to come forward for the conferral of the honorary degree Mary blank stone as chief nursing
officer for community health center you apply your passion for quality nursing
services at the state’s largest federally qualified health center and
patient-centered medical home primary care health care for the homeless and
school-based health services are among the areas you oversee you also are
committed to expanding and improving the quality of nursing services at CHC since
joining it as a family nurse practitioner and you have assumed many
diverse roles over the last decade when completing your Doctor of Nursing
Practice education at John Hopkins University in 2015 you focused your
capstone course on improving access to hepatitis C treatment within primary
care you were instrumental in implementing project echo a program that
joined specialists from CHCs main sites in the Middletown Meriden
area where hepatitis C treatment is available with health care providers at
its satellite offices around the state for weekly video conferences so more
patients with that disease can gain access to treatment an appreciation of
your dedication to improving the lives of the many patients who desperately
need nursing services your work to reach the underserved through project echo
Quinnipiac University is pleased to present you with an honorary doctorate
of Humane Letters degree this 21st day of May 2017 by the power vested in me by the Board
of Trustees I hereby confer upon you the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters
honoris causa with all the rights and privileges pertaining thereto
congratulations it’s now my privilege to introduce our commencement speaker Mary
blanks in’ president Leahy Dean Lang and distinguished faculty and staff family
friends and of course the graduating class of 2017
I want to thank you and let you know how honored I was to be invited to be your
commencement speaker to celebrate with you and hopefully to encourage challenge
and inspire you as you enter into this career which truly holds endless
possibilities Quinnipiac University School of Nursing on your website the
heading states that you are dedicated to transforming healthcare one student at a
time that you have been focused on delivering a nursing education that
emphasizes holistic and person centered care delivery as well as one that
highlights all who contribute to the overall interprofessional collaborative
practice team these statements resonate with so many principles that I value as
someone who has spent the last 12 years at our state’s largest federally
qualified health center Community Health Center Inc where our banner is that
health care is a right and not a privilege this is why this university in
our health center have forged a partnership to transform the role of the
nurse in primary care which is so important to the growing discussion of
where our nation’s healthcare system is headed and the focus that is being
placed on prevention and value-based care quinnipiac is the first University
in the state to seize this opportunity and under Dean Lange’s leadership you
have shown your dedication to innovation and partnerships that focused on
changing the model of education for this new generation of nurses and you the
class of 2017 are a product of that great education close to 20 percent of
CHCs current frontline nursing staff have been a product of that great
education and they are making a very real difference today
and so will you I wonder how many of you in this class are second generation
nurses or have other relatives or mentors who are nurses I’m always so
moved by the stories I hear from new nurses as to what inspired them to enter
this field and what and that journey often starts with a story about their
own health that of someone in their family or about a friend or a loved one
who is a nurse that they always admired I’m so impressed knowing just how hard
you all have worked to get to this day others may not completely grasp the late
nights of studying followed by early mornings of clinical and the constant
juggling and incorporating of new knowledge with very little downtime to
celebrate or even commiserate along the way when people ask you how your day was
used to share a story that often includes intimate details of humanity
and how people enter and leave this life in one single moment you share how you
have the privilege to bear witness to it all I say to the family and friends here
today you should be very proud of the hard work and dedication the amount of
themselves that these graduates have poured into every day here in this
moment all for the privilege of calling themselves nurses yes we are nurses we work to instill and
restore dignity even when it means just allowing life to happen
we’re present and bear witness to the human experience we create opportunities
for families and patients to celebrate to love and even times to mourn that is
why this is much more than just a career it’s a passion a mission and a calling
that comes with much responsibility it is a life filled with character defining
experiences where each small seemingly insignificant contact really displays
who we are choosing to be as well as who we are hoping to become this achievement
that we recognize and honor here today is one small yet monumental step in your
journey to honor those that came before you and those that will follow from here
you will continue to blaze a trail carving out your portion of the wider
path that will determine where the nursing profession is going in the years
to come so I want to leave you with three thoughts as you cross this stage
today one this idea that we should check ourselves at the door that you respect
the journey and that you dream big so first I want you to think about what it
would mean to check yourself at the door not that your perspective isn’t
important actually on the contrary you should be taking the time to record your
story even if only to process it with yourself and to validate your unique
journey not only the beautiful and amazing but the traumatic and messy
things that people go through every day but to check yourself at the door is to
humbly acknowledge your weaknesses your biases your fears patience will rock
your boat and push your buttons and not because they necessarily want to but
because that is what being human is all about sometimes they’ll be happy and
other times they won’t but all the time they will need your help and support
sometimes their behavior is really masking fear or sadness or very real
trauma and we must be able to see through that to really understand their
experience and how we can intervene we have to be prepared to walk alongside
them we might not know quite what to expect but our openness is critical to
every interaction after my first few rotations in nursing school I had
learned so much about how my preconceived notions were completely
wrong and how controversial issues like
non-compliance or non-adherence are so much more complicated that I originally
had thought patients do not willfully make poor choices nor do they
necessarily take pleasure in these choices some lack support some
understanding sometimes patients are too proud to ask for help and still
sometimes things just happen for what seems like no reason at all when people
say we should be non-judgmental or sensitive we often think no problem
that’s easy but isn’t life more complicated than
this checking yourself at the door requires you to look deeper that you
recognize acknowledge and understand that others may be dealing with more
complicated set of circumstances than you see on the surface as a nurse it is
your responsibility to validate that experience and perception so that you
may journey with them not rushing ahead to point out the way but to patiently
walk beside them and to consider each fork in the road with them as they
decide which way to go second I want you to think about what it would mean to
respect the journey just like you your patient is on a journey one that will
have highs and lows and a lot of in-betweens now I’m a bit of a hiker I
recently set a goal to hike the entire Appalachian Trail the 80 before I retire
it’s about 85 miles a year so you can sort of decide from there how old I am
but the last section of the 80 that I completed was 24 miles total I started
in Harpers Ferry West Virginia and was hoping to make it through the Maryland
section in two days about 40 miles I often aim high some people might say
too high my hiking made is a colleague from my DNP program on our first day we
had hoped to complete 24 miles at around 12 miles to go she turned to me and said
how about we set a new goal this wasn’t about her on the contrary she knew I was
already tired and struggling and she wanted to ensure that I was having fun
rather than torturing myself of course I appreciated this and about
two-and-a-half miles later we called it quits for the night and stayed at a
shelter as I fell asleep I reflected on the day especially on how sore my body
was but more importantly I had learned so much about myself even in the midst
of appointment every experience every
moment we take in information for me I had learned that I was clearly not
prepared to do 24 miles that first day but I was also excited that I had
completed 14 and a half I recognize that this dear friend had helped me to focus
on the positive and celebrate my victories while also then later
discussing with me strategies to increase my strength endurance and other
things that would support my success in the next hike
make no mistake she could have been disappointed in me or frankly could have
left me behind but instead she focused on the journey the journey that she was
taking with me she was so supportive in the moments when I was feeling
disappointed in myself in my preparation and ultimately in my own body in
retrospect I realized later that this is how my patients must feel at times and
don’t we all experience this in order to get to the highs in our journeys we must
work very hard on that uphill climb managing all the trail switchbacks and
carrying baggage pacing ourselves to conserve our energy while battling with
the mind games that push us to give up going downhill seems so much simpler at
least in theory but we all know that even walking downhill can be tough on
our bodies the next day and frankly going downhill leads to the obvious
reality that at some point we’ll have to work our way back up again as we think
about our patients we must quickly identify where they are in their journey
so that we can adjust ourselves to their perspective are they on the way down
where everything seems to be going smoothly and things seem easy but they
have no idea how they’ll feel after or are they on their way up but it feels so
difficult that they’re on the verge of giving up have they stopped to sit
because they actually have given up or are they just resting often we as nurses
are focused solely on one intervention or one interaction with the patient and
we forget the journey they are on the impact of our actions on their overall
journey that could ultimately lead them to alter their course or to get back up
and keep moving now I’m not suggesting that all the power is in our hands if we
would just say this or do that then our patients would just fall in line in
March in the right direction all of those who came to CHC for a rotation
witnessed firsthand the challenges we have in really trying to tap into the
hopes and dreams with of our patients helped them to set goals and to work
steadily towards meeting them often they don’t think they actually have any goals
or feel that they could even reach a goal if they set one so it’s up to us to
help them to find even just a drop of motivation to work with that is how we
begin the journey with them even when it seems that they’ve given up we still
work diligently to plant seeds you never know when that something will come to
root and your patient will ask a question make an appointment or actually
be in the right place at the right time in your journey there may be times you
question why you decided to become a nurse or why you chose your particular
specialty and maybe when you start paying back your student loans but it
could be after a particularly difficult day but that is when you should lead
yourself back to your own story your own narrative that explains why you’re on
this journey and why you embarked on this work worthwhile Trek some days the
climb will feel harder than others and some days you may feel like giving up
but please please don’t ever stop and don’t mistake a rest stop for your
destination any pit stop along the way should be savored and enjoyed but not
for too long because the next leg of your journey will always be ready and
waiting for you and it will take you to places you never expected
third think about what it would mean to dream big to push toward a mountaintop
beyond the one you have already attained when I interview nurses for jobs at our
health center I tell them I expect them to be dreamers I want to surround myself
with people who are recklessly creative who think outside the box
folks who are not afraid to ask the hard questions this is how as a health center
as a profession and as a country we reinvent ourselves in the health care we
deliver every day this is how nurses we have nurses we have fought to achieve
the right to practice to the extent of our training and now we have continued
to expand the work that we do to serve and even greater ways in order to dream
big we must be multilingual not just in the literal sense when it comes to
spoken language but also in the figurative sense we must be able to
understand the word the world our patients live in because that is where
they are struggling to grasp and hold on to health to whatever extent the
circumstances may allow we must be able to understand data and policy and
in finance so that we can better understand the political and corporate
interests that impact our patients and we need to be at the forefront of the
very important decisions that our country is making today we need to
continue to embrace the diversity in our workforce and how we prepare nurses to
serve in expanded roles particularly those in the community where the need
will only continue to grow as we move forward towards value-based care in the
context of the patient-centered medical home at CH C we wholeheartedly believe
that health care is a right and not a privilege we work every day to make this
a reality not just for our patients but for our patients but for patients across
the country through partnerships with other health centers with universities
and local and national organizations and by sharing everything we do to ensure
that we are working toward a standard of care delivery that everyone has access
to you need to be in the middle of this work no matter where you take your first
job or where you apply your skill always take a risk and stand and advocate for
what is right it is only through exercising ourselves outside of our
comfort zones and achieving and sometimes falling short that we learn
the full extent of our capabilities and learn to leverage stretch and strengthen
every last fiber of our beings in scientific circles people insist that if
you can’t measure it then it doesn’t exist but a new line of thinking is
emerging to assert that stories are just data with a soul for me that’s the heart
of Nursing yes you steep yourselves in sound methodology courageous public
policy and evidence-based practices but more than anything nurses and the
stories they inspire are the living proof the evidence that there is so much
more to health care and to people into society that meets the eye if we don’t
continue to maintain focus on our narrative our story our journey and then
strive to use that truth to ensure that every individual can receive the care
that I believe all have a right to we may in fact lose sight of where we’re
going and lose sight of those we took an oath to care for as you journey onward I
am hopeful that you will reflect often and be patient with yourselves and those
that you take care of strive to surround yourself with people who want to see you
succeed and who opened doors for you too do things that might feel uncomfortable
but will ultimately grow you in ways you never imagined and above all dream big
expect two great things to happen because you intend to make great things
happen always keep focused on your mission the
best healthcare for all so as that I say congratulations to the class of 2017 on
achieving today’s big dream thank you thank you Mary it’s now my privilege to
turn over the program to dr. Jean Lange Dean of the School of Nursing welcome I ask now for Lisa O’Connor
Associate Dean of the School of Nursing Andrea Sanford clinical professor of
Nursing to proceed to the pinning area the first pins were awarded to recognize
selfless service to injured and dying soldiers in the Crimean War finning
became a tradition in florence Nightingale’s st. Thomas School of
Nursing and later in schools of Nursing across the United States our graduates
today are receiving not only their degree but also their nursing pin with
these pins we celebrate your journey and welcome you as colleagues into the
profession of Nursing wear it proudly marshals would you please direct the
candidates for the degree of Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the School of
Nursing to the platform Christie Joyce Albers Julia Alta Brando Rihanna Irene Amendola Neve Kathleen
Hoshi Natalie tomorrow at Encino Kristen EMBO
Mia Olivia grace Becker Catherine Elise Bibi Olivia and Dimas Marie furniture Marie burn as the
recipient of the Alumni Award for holistic Nursing Practice the award
recognizes clinical excellence and exceptional potential in the discipline
of Nursing it is presented to the senior nursing student who has demonstrated a
strong commitment to the unity of body mind emotion and spirit in the delivery
of health care the award is supported by the Quinnipiac University nursing Alumni
fund which was established by the class of 1998 congratulations Maria amber marie Barrios Caroline Murray best annalisa this egg Leah Jenna Marie bird Chloe
Lorraine moisture Victoria ybody Cody Thomas resetti molly elizabeth Broder Tsin Courtney
Alexander Cabana Brianna Alexis Cahill Christina
Danielle Camacho kayla marie Carberry kayla marie carne Audra
Maria can Tonya Alexa Marie kolache ah Victoria leakin Chetty Lauren Elizabeth
Condon Alessandra Rose Cortina Casey Lynn Crompton Erica Rose degli Anna Maria Leila
D’Amico Sofia Christina D grace Elizabeth de Frank Alyssa Marie de Stefano Mary Ellen Devine Christopher Pablo Diaz Christopher is the recipient of the Judy
Lahey community service award the award was established by John Lahey PhD
president of Quinnipiac University and is named for Judith Lahey a former nurse
and community service advocate it is given in recognition of exemplary
community service and awarded to a graduating senior with a GPA of 3.0 or
higher and who demonstrates impactful community service related to nursing in
addition the recipient exhibits adherence to the core values of the
nursing profession and in particular the School of Nursing at Quinnipiac and has
the vision of holism into professionalism and inclusivity
congratulations Christopher Sonam dolma Taylor Jessica eaten Samantha Lee Edwards Sydney Jennifer
Earhart Jennifer an Elsa sir Morgan Ryan
Ely Olivia Callie Pharrell Gillian June Farah Guto Rachel Lauren Foley Nicole Daytona
Fowler Morgan Catherine fuller shannon nicole busca Grayson Elizabeth gal Urd Makayla Rose
go dead Andrew Michael Geller Danielle Margaret
jiggly own Lauren Rebecca Ginsburg Emily Sofia Gonzalez Kaitlyn Patricia
griever Casey Marie Harding Sierra Beth Harger Courtney Makayla Harrington Brittany Felicia heart Deborah horn Carrie and henna jizz Kimberly page
Hodgkin Katherine Elaine whore BEC Morgan Page Judd zinyak Sara Elizabeth
Jess Melissa Elizabeth John’s Taylor Elizabeth
Johnson Cynthia a Jones Kevin Connor Juhasz Emily Bryce kata Amanda page Coffman Cal Keeton Akula
cats Allah Jody Lynn Hutchins Jordan Lee lacrosse Jordan is the recipient of the Benjamin
and Juliet true an award for professional leadership in nursing the
award recognizes outstanding and exceptional potential in the discipline
of Nursing as a leader and is presented to the nursing student who’s made
significant contributions to the nursing program and the greater community of
Nursing this award is supported by the Benjamin and Juliet to ruin a memorial
endowed fund established for the program by Estelle true and Beecher in memory of
her parents congratulations Jordan Danielle marine LaRocca Alexandria
Larson hannah elizabeth LaFave Caitlin Nicole left Nicole Christine lafurgey Catherine
Elizabeth lebu Erica joy Leonard Christopher Michael Lucy Caitlin
Kelleher Lynch Carrie Louise Michiko Danielle Nicole Mickey Olivia may her Mahoney marie-therese
amande Jessica and Marina’s Jennifer and Martin Cameron Lima Sully really
Aaron McDonald Brooke Ashley McGrath Ashland Margaret Mikkel
knee Julia Jean McKenna Alyssa Katherine Melton Lauren Britt Lindh McKee KY check Lindsay and Mistretta Emily and middle
stopped Brianna Marie Lynn Morales Melissa and Moynihan Christie no tea nick van win Margaret Mary Jo O’Brien Kelly gene Ortiz Stephanie narcho acai Samantha Nicole Perrigo Nia latecha oppa
hi do jennifer marie Peterson Jennifer’s see Pollard Erika grace Posadas Sara Ellis post Kennedy Arianna Rochelle II you suppiy
real Emily L Richardson Melissa and Richardson Megan Aaron Riley Veronica Lynn resna GAC excel Rodriguez Abigail Elizabeth for Sonny Kristiana
Adrian Razzak Danielle Aaron Schreiber Angelina Elizabeth Smith Megan Elizabeth
Stanford Katherine Margaret Sullavan Gabrielle Bobby Swan Christina and
Tonetta Taibbi jalinda Tahoe Fonseca Rebecca Jane Taylor Rachel Lee tits Tony Sara and Terry own Cory Celine de pious Emily page
Todd Marie a turkey OH Taba Chuku la Lumia we’ll go today is the recipient of three
prestigious awards alright I’m going to tell you what they
are the Benjamin a Juliet truant award for academic excellence in nursing
recognizes excellence and exceptional potential and discipline of Nursing the
Alumni Association academic achievement award is made possible by the Alumni
Association National Board of Governors in honor the student from each of the
undergraduate schools who has attained the highest scholastic standing in
addition to earning this rank in the School of Nursing with a 4.0 GPA tibay is also the recipient of the
President’s Scholarship award dr. Leahy presents this award in recognition of
the students who have attained the highest scholastic standing in their
graduating class tobei is a member of the nursing
international Honor Society Sigma Theta Tau
he’s also the fourth of his siblings to graduate from Quinnipiac his parents ike
and IJ join him on stage congratulations today Chloe Alice Underwood amber Gabriella Brenda khatola samantha
marie vitaly test galina anna valino Christopher Frederick Wallace Jessica Danielle Walsh Margaret rose
Whelan Sarah Adams wailing allison marie whitney jessica lynn williams megan
elizabeth young Hannah Olivia the back I asked the candidates to please rise mr. president I have the honor to
present from the School of Nursing candidates for the degree of Bachelor of
Science in Nursing by the power vested in me by the Board
of Trustees I hereby confer upon you the degree of Bachelor of Science in Nursing
with all the rights and privileges pertaining thereto
congratulations to all of you it is now my privilege to introduce dr.
Mary Ann Gordo associate professor of Nursing to lead the graduates in the
nursing pledge thank you graduates please remain standing okay
together we’re going to repeat and recite the Quinnipiac School of Nursing
pledge ready I do solemnly pledge before this assembly to provide holistic here
to all those in need of my disciplinary knowledge and skills I will use clinical
reasoning when providing nursing care I will continually seek new knowledge
and assist in knowledge development to guide Nursing Practice I will enter into
each nursing situation with an open mind through personal knowing I will use
myself therapeutically when interacting with my patients my care will be rooted
in ethics as defined in the American Nurses Association code of ethics I will
engage in practice to seek out and change social and political and justices
that affect the health of individuals communities and populations I will use
my knowledge skills and beliefs to work as a member of the interdisciplinary
health care team to provide safe patient and family-centered care congratulations please be seated it’s now my privilege to introduce our
student speaker allison marie whitney allison is a nursing major from
Burlington Massachusetts Thank You Dean Lange and members of the platform party
I would like to welcome all faculty staff family friends and especially the
School of Nursing class of 2017 it is an absolute honor to be standing here with
all of you today if there is one thing we have learned throughout nursing
school it is that if it was not documented it did not happen so let me
document some of the most memorable moments over the past four years of
nursing school it began during our nursing orientation
as we looked around and recognized maybe one or two faces but mostly we were all
strangers to one another we entered a new chapter in our lives where we were
living in dorms away from our parents and wanting to be independent we were
all oriented to the classes ahead of us like microbiology anatomy and physiology
and the much anticipated nursing classes that began our junior year but junior
year was so far away so let me begin with what came first two words muscles
and bones we were expected to know every single bone in every single muscle in
the human body how were we going to survive this I remember riding the
shuttle into New Haven on the weekends and catch each other’s eyes and we would
all just start yelling out random muscles and random bones and expect each
other than to note them and guess what we did and we passed at the time that
was one of the hardest obstacles we had to over
but then came our microbiology final people were buying coffees at midnight
bringing pillows into the library pulling all-nighters and adjusting their
font size on their note card 2.0 for just to fit all the information on it
I remember tired eyes but determined students walking into the exam that day
and after two hours the most difficult exam was over what we thought was the
most difficult exam at the time summer of 2015 had come and gone and our junior
year had finally arrived most of August was spent frantically
booking doctor’s appointments trying to fulfill all the health requirements and
putting them into my record tracker our very first clinical was just a few weeks
away and in August we received our very first med surg clinical placements
I couldn’t believe we would finally be taking care of patients in the hospital
then came the vital signs the bed bats in our very first injections of course
we learned to do all of this in health assessment where we awkwardly did health
assessments on each other for four months and if anyone else remembers
sitting in lab the very first day and your instructors telling you you will be
able to do a full head-to-toe assessment in just 10 minutes by the end of this
semester I thought it was a joke I could barely take a blood pressure in ten
minutes never mind you a full head-to-toe
assessment but along with lab we were taking our very first nursing classes
and I think we all shared a moment in time that junior year we all questioned
whether or not we were going to make it how did the faculty express to expect us
to do a full head-to-toe assessment take five exams all in one week that were
almost 100 questions and still be living breathing college students by the end of
the semester our class had become so much closer bonding over how stressful
things have been but also how much progress we had made in such a short
amount of time the following semester we continued our journey and began our
clinical with babies children and moms I will never forget forget we
missing the birth of two babies born in one day it made me realize why I wanted
to become a nurse to give comfort to mothers bringing new life into the world
and to be subtle be part of such a special moment in their lives while I
remember the very first birth I witnessed which I’m sure all of you do
as well I remember the first patient that I had lost and in those moments I
was reminded again of why I wanted to become a nurse to be by the bedside
holding my patients hand who was surrounded by such a loving family and
to find that I could bring comfort and ease to a patient and one of the most
difficult times of their lives and I think that’s what we all strive for to
provide empathy in support to families and patients in their most vulnerable
times and to say the least junior year was the most challenging but
the most rewarding year of nursing school and after our long hours of
learning studying and practicing brought us to our senior year how could we
forget being welcomed in with a spoonful of sugar in the cardiac conduction song
starting with and say note down the inter knodel’s off to the Bachman AV
node so I just want to say thank you to
Professor Herman who has made every single class unforgettable for us at the
time we were learning about heart rhythms chest tubes full codes and so
much more than I could ever imagine we started this journey thinking we were
never going to be able to take a manual blood pressure and here we were learning
how to save a life did we even recognize how far we had come time flew by and
fall semester finals week was ahead of us we studied for weeks in advance took
our tests and waited impatiently for our grades to be posted and I think that was
the hardest part the waiting game having to wait for the little red notification
to pop up on the right side of blackboard letting us know whether we
passed or we failed and the truth is now that number behind the little red
notification seems so insignificant the number we all all waited for almost like
it was going to define what kind of nurse we would be now seems like such a
small part of nursing school this spring we were placed in our capstone clinical
rotations an experience that we had all been looking forward to for I don’t even
know how long and we were being able to put our skills fully to the test to see
what kind of nurse we might be one day and today we sit here at our
undergraduate nursing graduation the little red notification did not tell you
what kind of nurse you would be but all of these people all of the unforgettable
professors all of your friends and all of these experiences over the last four
years have shaped you into the kind of nurse that you will become a proud
Quinnipiac nurse one who views a patient lying in bed as a person with feelings
and a life and not just a body suffering from disease you will know that a smile
can change a patient’s day from being one of the worst to exactly what they
need sitting at the bedside sharing a moment
of silence will now be recognized as exactly what a patient needs the truth
is you can become any nurse you want to be you can be the nurse that comforts
new mothers and fathers entering a new chapter in their lives or who holds the
elderly man after his wife has passed away you can be the nurse
who is holding the kid going through chemotherapy or the nurse who is holding
the patient who is recovering from surgery walking down the hall you can be
any nurse you want to be because we have the skills and we have the knowledge and
we have the compassion to make a difference one patient at a time and yes
going for it is going to be scary we have to take our NCLEX patients will
eventually be our sole responsibility but we are expected to grow and develop
as professionals and we are ready we have profoundly fulfilled the
expectations of this program and will take with us so much more we will become
great nurses and I am so grateful that I have become and have been a part of this
community with every single one of you we will always have the memory becoming
sweeter with each passing moment of these four years of college to look back
on we started together studied together cried together and now we are here
celebrating together so class when we walk out of this building we will begin
the next chapter of our lives as professionals I hope for each and every
one of you it is everything you have dreamed since the beginning of this
program good luck to every single one of you I am so proud congratulations we did it’s my privilege now to introduce dr.
Barbara DuPont Quinnipiac alumna to officially welcome our graduates as
alumni I loved Quinnipiac I asked the graduates of the School of Nursing to
please rise it is my great honor to stand before you as a former assistant
professor of nursing of this outstanding school a Doctor of Nursing Practice and
proud graduate from the School of Law class of 1994 I now invite you to move
your tassel to the left of your mortarboard this simple act signifies your
transition from students to alumnus and the continuation of your unique
meaningful and lifelong relationship with Quinnipiac University I’m
especially pleased to welcome all of you to the Quinnipiac University alumnus
family and I urge you to continue to bring honor and distinction to our
beloved and Noble University and our esteemed profession in the nightingale
tradition congratulations to all of you before I reintroduce Reverend Jordan
Lanahan who will deliver the benediction I have a few announcements and the
graduates may be seated only the platform party and faculty will
recess out and we ask the graduates to go to the area behind the stage for a
class photo and if you don’t mind we would also love it too if you can also
give us a photo of your mortarboards if you could take them off because they’re
so amazing we’d love to have a picture of just the mortarboards too so for
families and guests we ask that you give your graduate a few minutes to have
their photo taken before you meet up with them either remain at your seats or
you can go directly to the reception which is at the Rocky Top Student Center
next door while we accommodate a few moments for those photos there is
transportation to the Rocky Top Student Center for those needing assistance once
outside you’ll see signs on the Left would you please stand and it’s now my privilege to ask
Reverend Jordan lanihan Catholic chaplain to please come forward and
deliver the benediction frankly one of you knows me better than the rest last
semester I had gone to my own doctor and she said do you mind if I bring a
nursing student who’s shadowing me in and I said absolutely if she’s learning
bring her in and the student came in and I said now where do you go to school and
she says oh father I go to Quinnipiac and at that moment the physician in one
swift almost sort of martial arts move had a door open and that student out of
the door and she said oh I’m so sorry I’m so sorry she can’t see your records
she’s bound by HIPPA and I looked at her and I said please doctor relax I said I
work at Quinnipiac I said they’re the best nursing students there are and I
would never ever hesitate to be treated by one of them and a few moments ago about an hour ago
you processed in here is undergraduate Quinnipiac students and in a few moments
you’re gonna walk out of here as alumni of this University and with that in mind
I’d invite you now to please once more bow your heads graduates of our student
our student School of Nursing as you go forth today may you know in your lives
success enjoy me you know love and laughter may what you have learned here
at Quinnipiac University allow you to advance your professions and field of
endeavors may allow you to transform lives to heal our world may you leave
the world a better place because you were in it and may you always be women
and men of dignity integrity and character and may God bless you this day
and every day of your life amen

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