All of the graduates received their Professional Pin. The pin, which was presented to the graduates by Dr. Judith McFetridge-Durdle, director of the School of Nursing, is a symbol of transition from nursing student to beginning professional in a career dedicated to service to the community.
Nurse Practitioner Dawn LeBlanc was the keynote speaker for the event. Since 2009 Dawn has been at CFB Gagetown, where she has had the opportunity to combine all of her skills in primary and acute patient care, taking on a leadership role, and mentoring nurse practitioner students. Dawn graduated from the University of Manitoba in 2000 with her BN. She’s worked in the remote Northern Aboriginal communities in Manitoba, and as a critical care nurse in an emergency room and ICU. While working full time she completed her MN and nurse practitioner (Emergency Specialty) education at Dalhousie in 2005. As a result of her in-depth knowledge of acute and primary healthcare, and her experience working in remote locations, Dawn was asked to be the first civilian to be sent on tour to CFS Alert.
The two class valedictorians, Matthew Brake and Kimberly Goodyear also said a farewell on behalf of their class and reminisced about their time at the school.
Four master of nursing graduates were also in attendance to announce their practicum topics. In addition, numerous awards were handed out at the ceremony to undergraduate and graduate students. For the full list of awards and to view a PDF of the ceremony program, please visit: http://www.mun.ca/nursing/about_us/Oct_2011_Graduation_Program.pdf.