PRESQUE ISLE — To foster campus spirit in an era of social distancing, Northern Maine Community College admissions staff hosted a virtual signing ceremony for the incoming 2021 nursing cohort on Feb. 17 via Zoom.
“Nurses will reflect back on these moments throughout their career,” said Department Chair Eileen McDougal. “They’ll remember the first time they met their classmates, the butterflies in their stomach, and their first impressions of a faculty member. This is a rich and rewarding career path, and we’re excited that these students have entrusted us to teach them.”
The admissions team invited all applicants who had received an offer of acceptance into the nursing program to join in the event via a formal digital invitation. On the day of the event, Director of Admissions Wendy Bradstreet broadcast live from the Edmunds Conference Center on NMCC campus.
While waiting for the event to begin some students had an opportunity to share smiles and inside jokes across the Zoom room. While many students have never enrolled in college classes before, others have already completed general education courses and become familiar with classmates. “Come fall of 2021, these students will play a critical role in each other’s lives,” Bradstreet explained.
Bradstreet shared the microphone with Nursing Department Chair McDougal and Academic Dean Angela Buck. All three shared words of wisdom and discussed what to expect in the coming years. Nursing education is known for its challenging curriculum, but NMCC has developed a reputation of providing support, guidance, and community to create an experience many graduates reflect fondly upon. This year NMCC ranked as a top nursing program in the state with a pass-rate of 92.6 percent on the national NCLEX exam required for licensing. The national average for first-time testers in 2020 was 86.57 percent.
After a short video showcasing the rich history of nursing on campus the students pulled out their pens and signed in unison. The conference center rang out with applause as onlookers welcomed the new nursing students.
“It was nice to see the faces of the other students as we begin this crazy journey into nursing school!” said Hannah Voisine, one of the applicants who attended the virtual event.
Incoming students were then asked to open a sealed envelope they’d received in the mail. Within the envelope each student discovered their NMCC Nursing Patch which will be sewn onto their future lab coat.
“This is the beginning of an exciting journey,” said Academic Dean Angela Buck, who previously served as the department chair of the nursing program and is a graduate of the program. “We all need connection right now, and we hope bringing together students in this way, and honoring this moment, conveys that importance. We’re excited to see them on campus next fall.”
To learn more about the NMCC nursing program please visit nmcc.edu or call admissions at 207-768-2785.