Hundreds of family members and friends came to support their loved ones as Pearl River Community College recognized 55 Practical Nursing graduates at a pinning ceremony held on Wednesday at The Ethel Holden Brownstone Center for the Arts. The afternoon was a time of celebration for all while recognizing the hard work each of the students put in during the past year.
Graduates were greeted by PRCC President Dr. Adam Breerwood with words of congratulation for their accomplishments on behalf of the faculty, staff, and Board of Trustees. Breerwood said, “Thank you for choosing Pearl River and for the way you represent our institution. We are so genuinely proud of each of you.”
Sandra Culpepper, a 2007 graduate of the PRCC Practical Nursing Program, provided words of encouragement to the students as the guest speaker. She is currently the Vice President of the Mississippi Board of Nursing, the first time a Licensed Practical Nurse has served in the role.
“The love of my profession and my deep desire to help others has rewarded me more than any amount of money has ever given me in this lifetime,” said Culpepper. “Your potential is great and to be able to make a difference not only for your patients but also make a difference in the nursing community.”
Each campus had a student selected to provide remarks on behalf of their classmates.
The Poplarville Campus students were represented by Jessica Kutch. She was overcome with emotion while sharing about the death of her mother shortly after she began her studies and the promise she made to her to complete the program. She credits her peers and instructors for being the support she needed to keep going.
“Nursing is not about memorizing a medication, changing a dressing or knowing how to read a cardiac monitor,” said Kutch. “It is truly caring and helping when someone cannot do it on their own. It is reaching out and holding a patient’s hand to let them know you are there.”
“Being a nurse allows you to love, even when you think you have no more to give.”
Marquita Sims represented Forrest County Campus.
“As we continue our journey, let us face each problem with the same resilience and perseverance that got us here,” said Sims. “Knowing that we have achieved great things and that we are equipped with the tools necessary to tackle any carriers in the world.
“We were put under a lot of pressure this year. But pressure makes diamonds. So now we can shine. With the knowledge that we’ve gained, we are ready to enter into the world as resilient, confident, and skilled nurses.”
During the pinning ceremony, each student had their dedication card read aloud. Through these, they were able to express their gratitude to those that helped them reach the finish line.
A student from each campus class was chosen as the Most Outstanding Student. Sims was selected for Forrest County Campus and Alyson Waizenegger was selected for Poplarville Campus.
Practical Nursing students are listed by campus with recognitions in parentheses.
Forrest County Campus: Tykira Bouldin (Phi Theta Kappa,) Mackenzi Bounds, Garrett Brown, Elecia Campbell (honors,) Payton Conner, Shametrius Ducksworth, Tatiana Ferguson, Meissa Franzen, Brittany Grayer, Brittany Henderson, Amber Hoewt, Keyuna Howard, Jamiresh Jordan, Chasity Magee, Diamon Mark (Phi Theta Kappa & National Technical Honor Society,) Tyler McLemore, Amberlon Mclendon, Tameshia Oatis, Garyanna Page, Robbie Passman, Mikeria Pollock, Tremetricia Robers, Marquita Sims (Phi Theta Kappa,) Jaibrianne Stallings, Denesha Steele, Kyndall Sutton, Jhameyah Theodore, and Kenyana Williams.
Poplarville Campus: Carlee Baudoin (Phi Theta Kappa,) Brandi Bilbo, Bailey Billiot, Justice Breland, Jasmine Cantrell, Anita Cheramie, Rebekah Cobb, Sheila Crain (Phi Theta Kappa,) Kaitlyn Crossgrove, Erica Dominey (Phi Theta Kappa,) Cammie Garriga, Crystal Herrera, Stephanie Herzig, Sherry Hudson, Jessica Kutch, Brianna Ladner, Jennifer McManus, Makayla Moye, Lauren Nicols, Courtney Osby, Tiyuanna Maxwell, Jaila Parker, Kylie Roche, Brittan Ruiz, Sametria Stallings, Macayla Strong, and Alyson Waizenegger (Phi Theta Kappa.)
LPN PROGRAM OPTIONS AND HOW TO APPLY
The Practical Nursing program is available for full-time students during the day at the Forrest County and Poplarville Campuses. An evening/weekend option is available at all three campuses (Forrest County, Hancock, and Poplarville.) Full-time students complete the program in 3 semesters (one year) while part-time students take five semesters to finish.
Prospective students must first meet all PRCC admission requirements before completing the Practical Nursing application. Applicants must also take the TEAS Test completed through ATI Testing. The deadline to apply to ANY option is March 1.