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Graduating nursing students honored at pinning ceremony

HUNTINGTON, Ind. Ten Huntington University graduating nursing students were honored today in a traditional pinning ceremony.

The Class of 2011 is the first graduating class from the Department of Nursing. This week, the nursing program was awarded full accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

The history of the nursing pinning ceremony stems from the Crimean War when Florence Nightingale took 38 women to Turkey to nurse sick and wounded British soldiers. As many a night she cared for her patients by the light of a lamp, Florence Nightingale became known as the "lady with the lamp." As a tribute to Florence's dedication, the lamp icon became symbolic of nursing. Today, the nursing pin is used to signify this same dedication at the end of formal education and the beginning of practice, a way of welcoming graduates into the nursing profession.

At the ceremony, students received the Huntington University Department of Nursing pin with the department emblem.

Courtney Watkins received the senior leadership award for the Class of 2011. She was nominated by her peers.

"These are exciting days in the Department of Nursing at Huntington University. This year marks the first class of graduates from the nursing program and is the accumulation of several years of intense and rigorous education, both in the classroom and in the clinical setting," said Dr. Margaret Winter, director of nursing. "May the Lord bless each student as they now begin a practice of service and compassion."

Commencement exercises at Huntington University are scheduled for May 14.

The following students were honored during the ceremony today:

Matt Boyer of Converse, Ind.<
Stephanie Dooley of Zeeland, Mich.
Megan Durham of New London, Mo.
Emily Frankle of Huntington, Ind.
Rebecca Hull of Oley, Pa.
Jessica Rhode of Urasoe Okinawa, Japan
Mallory Schumm of Spencerville, Ohio
Dustin Shafer of Ashland, Ohio
Lindsey Stavedahl of Rochester, Ind.
Courtney Watkins of South Whitley, Ind.