ELKINS – The landscape of the nursing profession comes with many choices. That was the message D&E Professor of Nursing Dr. Threasia Witt delivered to the 2019 nursing graduates at the College’s annual Pinning Ceremony on Friday.
Witt, who has served on the D&E nursing faculty since 2010 and is set to retire at the end of the 2018-2019 academic year, delivered the keynote address. The scheduled speaker for the event was unable to attend.
Witt explained that nursing is more than a job; it is a profession and a passion that also allows one to earn a living. However, it will come with challenges, she said.
“You will have patients who appreciate the care you give them and ones who won’t,” Witt said. “You should treat each with the same care because you are a nurse.”
Not all nurses work under ideal conditions, she said, citing examples of those who give care in the combat zone, in third world countries and in areas where natural disasters have occurred. In these situations, supplies may be lacking and the surroundings may not be as sanitary as desired, yet the nurses persevere to give the best care.
“Remember, these nurses have the same profession and the same passion that you do,” Witt said.
To a lesser extreme, nurses may find other working conditions where they need to shine a positive light.
“You make the choice to be the one who improves everybody’s attitude,” Witt encouraged. “You have the opportunity to help everyone be more engaged and experience enjoyment.”
Still, if a particular setting is undesirable, Witt reminded the graduates that the nursing field is open to vast choices.
“As the nursing shortage continues, there are positions available in almost everything imaginable,” she said. “Consider all your choices. Find the place where you enjoy working and the people enjoy working with, and hopefully, you will pursue lifelong learning.”
D&E President Chris A. Wood also addressed the class, congratulating them on excelling in the classroom and in their clinical studies, and commending them for choosing a career that brings fulfillment.
“When we can marry our career and our vocation that results in a meaningful and purposeful life,” Wood said. “Your profession is your life’s calling.”
The traditional ceremony included the pinning of nursing graduates, rose presentations and a candlelit Florence Nightingale pledge.
Associate in Science nursing degree graduates participating in the ceremony were: Erin E. Beer, Buckhannon; Mariah L. Bowley, Parsons; Melissa R. Collett, Beverly; Mariah C. Davis, Belington; Leela A. Densmore, Belington; Katrina M. Fowler, Belington; Kari V. Frye, Buckhannon; Kristen R. Hedrick, Elkins; Benjamin S. Hinkle, Jenningston; Elise M. Joe, Elkins; Kathern N. Keith, Gilmer; Courtney D. Legg, Twenty-Mile; Tesla M. Lewis, Buckhannon; Lindsay R. Marks, Shinnston; Kayla S. Masters, Williamstown; Jennifer N. Morrison, Marlinton; Marlana K. Pennington, Junior; Talladaga C. Pennington, Coalton; Kristy L. Shifflett, Harman; Jontasia D. Sitton, Elkins; Miranda D. Smith, Elkins; Mataya B. Taylor, Elkins; Stormie J. Troxal, Elkins; Camilla P. Wamsley, Norton; Scarlett A. Warner, Marlinton; and Samuel A. Windham, Houston, Texas.
Graduates in the online R.N. to Bachelor of Science in Nursing program participating in the ceremony were: Holly Feather, Ellamore; Kourtni Kimble, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and Brandi R. Tomey, Buckhannon.