On April 28, a beautiful spring Saturday in New Hampshire, 69 nursing students of the class of 2012 received their Saint Anselm College nurse’s pins. Joined by family and friends, the students wore their traditional nursing caps and celebrated the completion of a highly respected and rigorous nursing program in the Abbey Church.
The pin, featuring the college’s official seal and the symbol of a lamp, refer to Psalm 119:105, “Your word is a lamp of my steps and a light for my path.” It symbolizes our nurses’ preparedness to serve as compassionate caregivers. Sharon George, dean of nursing, with the help of Karen Grafton, the program coordinator, pinned each nursing major with the Saint Anselm pin to wear for the entirety of their career.
Following opening remarks by Dean George, student speaker Carly Staab described a particularly significant clinical shift and reminded her nursing class, “Embrace differences, learn from one another, and be kind to one another. Do not underestimate the effect of caring words, a genuine smile, or a reassuring touch.”
During the ceremony, student Kelly Lenehan received the Joanne K. Farley nursing award for best exemplifying the qualities of the nursing program’s former director of nursing. Fr. Augustine Kelly, O.S.B., dean of the college, blessed the pins. Fr. Anselm Smedile, O.S.B., was celebrant and Fr. Benedict Guevin, O.S.B., gave the homily. A reception in Cushing Center followed the mass.
In talking about the ceremony, Staabs says it was beautiful: “It is such an incredible tradition and I feel blessed to have been provided the opportunity to be a part of it.”