The University of Alaska Southeast and the University of Alaska Anchorage School of Nursing is holding a pinning ceremony for graduates of the associate degree nursing program at 1 p.m. today at the UAS Egan Lecture Hall in Juneau. Registered nurse Jean Ballantyne, from University of Alaska Anchorage, will be attending.
The graduates in the 2009 cohort are Maegan Clifton, Rigel Falvey, Keith Goering, Patrick Grieser, Kirsten Kincaid, Hannah Mendelsohn, MeLissa Rose and Rachael Sturrock.
Over the past two years, the Juneau students learned to start IVs, urinary catheters, take blood pressure and dress wounds at a lab set-up at the Bill Ray Center. They attended weekly video conferences and got hands-on experience at Bartlett Regional Hospital, Wildflower Court, SEARHC, Valley Medical Care, Reifenstein Dialysis Center, Hospice and Home Care of Juneau, Juneau Public Schools and in Anchorage hospitals. Many of the students also worked as interns during summers at Bartlett Hospital while completing their degrees.
Student Hannah Mendelsohn shadowed registered nurses in the Bartlett operating room as part of her training.
"There are a lot of things that go into nursing that people don't realize," Mendelsohn said. "This program helps you communicate better, learn interpersonal skills, planning ahead and time management."
Mendelsohn is one of eight Juneau-based graduates in a group of 50 AAS nursing students statewide who have completed their studies. The other sites promoting students along with Juneau are Fairbanks, Homer, Mat-Su, Valdez, Kotzebue and Ketchikan.
"It has been a great pleasure to work with these students for four semesters. I am proud to present these nursing graduates to the Juneau community," said Juneau faculty Chris Urata. At least half of the graduates are applying for local employment.
The graduate nurses can take their National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as early as January 2010.