Sophomore nursing students at Fitchburg State University enjoyed the ceremonial launch of their clinical experiences at the second annual White Coat Ceremony on Jan. 19.
Professor Tara Mariolis, chair of the Nursing Department, said the ceremony signifies a pivotal transition in the lives of the students.
“Students, today you will take an oath to compassionate patient care,” Mariolis said. “You join a long line of nurses who have made the commitment to put the patient first as they provide holistic, humanistic and patient-centered care. It also signifies the nursing faculty’s commitment to support and mentor each of you as you embark on this next phase of your education.”
University President Richard S. Lapidus spoke about the nursing students’ place in Fitchburg State’s history.
“For more than six decades, Fitchburg State has prepared qualified and committed nurses to serve their communities in health care settings across the state, the nation, and the world,” President Lapidus told the students. “That history now includes all of you, who embody the values of service, dedication, and excellence that have defined our nursing graduates.”
Dean of Health and Natural Sciences Jennifer Hanselman also addressed the students, thanking them for the commitment to their future patients they are making through their studies.
“By choosing this program of study, you are showing that you are willing to challenge yourselves so that you may best serve others in your communities,” Hanselman said. “Thank you, for your demonstrated commitment to the nursing mission of serving the whole patient, focusing on their physical, social, and behavioral needs. As nurses, you tend to the medical conditions of those in your care with an added level of personal warmth and attention that will play no less of a role in the successful outcomes of your interactions.”
Fitchburg State junior Madison Waterson of West Boylston offered the student address, reflecting on being in her peers’ position a year ago.
“The white coat you are receiving symbolizes your entry into clinical practice,” Waterson said. “Your hard work, late night study sessions, and passion for this field has paid off. You have spent the past semester studying nursing history, how to conduct a head to toe assessment, and significance of the beloved fluid and electrolyte balance, just to name a few.
“Until now, you have been surrounded by the four walls of a classroom or have tuned in virtually to a zoom meeting,” Waterson continued. “Now it’s time for you to apply these concepts to the real world. This will transform what you have already learned into something tangible, that you will be able to see for yourselves. This next semester will provide many of you with your first patient encounters.”
The following nursing students received white coats at the ceremony: Ryan Aker, Maryam Ashraf, Vivica Banks, Li Batista-Lin, Macey Bridge, Caroline Doherty, Emily Doran, Jocelyn Dunn, Kirsten Figueiredo, Michelle Flores, Elizabeth Gianni, Oliver Ginnett, Kyla Guertin, Caroline Hamel, Ava Hannon, Stephanie Hart, Rachelle Keegan, Nicholas Lafleur, Lindsey Lafrance, Matthew Landadio, Maria Martins, Kaileigh Murphy, Kimberley Norris, Lisette Ortega, Kassandra Patch, Sabrina Patch, Lauren Serratore, Natalie Smith, Brooke Sullivan, Hana Valikangas, and Willow Wildman-Lyon.