Pressing on, practical nurses graduate

Published 7:19 pm Friday, July 26, 2019

Twelve graduates of Beaufort County Community College’s Licensed Practical Nursing program received their nursing school pins on July 18 in a traditional rite of passage for nursing school graduates across the country. Friends and family came to celebrate these students for pressing on to succeed in the program. Heather Baughman, Lisa Croom, Jessica Chadwick, Lytronda Harrell, Danielle Hawkins, Brittany Neal, Caitlyn Reynolds, Olivia Spencer, Wendy Townsend, Kristina Womble, Sybil Williams and Shmekka Yarrell graduated from the program.

LPN professor Aino Jackson acknowledged the challenges that each of the students faced during the program, and how they pushed through and finished. Personalizing the ceremony for all twelve nurses-to-be, Jackson looked at each of the graduates, moving down the rows one by one, calling out their names.

“You pressed on when you doubted nursing was an achievable goal,” said Jackson. “Some of you were juggling childcare and newborns during the program. All of you found that there are no shortcuts to success.”

“Work hard and work smart,” she advised. “Make a difference in your workplace. Be the kind of nurse you would want to have.”

Jackson presented Danielle Hawkins with the Academic Achievement Award for the class. Hawkins, along with Olivia Spencer and Shmekka Yarrell received a scholarship from the Class of 2018 to help pay for the National Council Licensure Examination. Each year, practical nursing students contribute to a scholarship to help students from the next year’s class with exam costs.

Two of the students wore gold sashes to signify their involvement with Gamma Beta Phi, BCCC’s honor society, while others wore the blue and white cord of the Beaufort County Association of Nursing Students, and some wore red cords, signifying that they participated in the TRiO program, support services for first-generation college students.

Professor Denise King joined Aino Jackson to pin the graduates, after which each one lit a candle. As they held their candles, they recited the Nurse’s Pledge. The pin is awarded to the nurse to recognize the achievement of entering the profession and to signify a nursing school graduate’s affiliation with a specific nursing school.

Course work for the LPN program includes the domains of healthcare, nursing practice and the holistic individual. It emphasizes safe, individualized nursing care and participation in the interdisciplinary team while employing evidence-based practice, quality improvement and informatics. Students have to develop nursing narratives, concept maps and complete clinicals at local healthcare facilities.

The graduates must pass the NCLEX-PN before starting employment at physicians’ offices; clinics; hospitals; or rehabilitation, long-term care or home health facilities.

These graduates may lead a life in service to others, but with the close bonds they have formed during their studies, they will also be in service to each other as they take their licensure exams and get their footing in their new careers.

For more information about the LPN program, contact Ashley Rose at 252-940-6221 or