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Collins honors its nursing graduates

PROCTORVILLE — The torch was passed Friday night as Collins Career Center nursing student Amber Burchett was pinned by her mother, Dana Burchett-Scott.

That made Amber the fourth generation of nurses in her family and received from her mother, who is also a nursing instructor at CCC, the pin Burchett-Scott’s grandmother received at her graduation in 1963. On the gold pin that once belonged to Susie Cox was the lamp, one of the icons of the nursing profession.

“I’m very proud and just happy for her,” Burchett-Scott said before the ceremony Friday night at the Abundant Life Church at Proctorville. “It is good job security and it is a special time for me.”

Amber was one of six students honored for earning an A average. Also honored were Patricia Conwell, Susan Frazier, Orin Runyon, Ashley Snyder and Debbie Watson.

There were 55 men and women, dressed in white scrubs, who walked across the stage at the church, all completing the 15-month licensed practical nursing program that Collins offers.

“It was a very good group of students,” Kay Swartzwelder, program director, said earlier in the day. “Many of them are interested in continuing their education to become registered nurses.”

One of those expected to go on to school is Meghan Adkins of Wheelersburg, who carried the desire to become a nurse from the age of 14.

“It’s an honor to be here. It makes me want to cry,” she said.

She plans to follow the RN program at Ohio University Southern and credits her CCC instructors for her future plans.

“It comes from the impact of my teachers. My teachers really influenced me,” Adkins said. “The sky is the limit.”

Jessica Martin of South Point was another following a family tradition as her mother has been in nursing for 23 years. Martin also plans to go on to OUS to become an RN with the goal of working in obstetrics.

“I just love working with babies,” she said.

Michael Arthur of Ashland was one of seven men who crossed the stage Friday. He hopes to combine working as an LPN with class work for his RN degree.

“It is a good way to give back to the community,” he said.

Among those honored at the ceremony were Ashley Snyder and Patricia Conwell for having the highest grade point average. The Best Clinician awards went to Jennifer Slash and Geneva Beck. And the Spirit of Nursing awards went to Savannah Flanery and Julie Hall.