Over 150 nurses, who will graduate next month, were honoured at a special ceremony at the University of Ulster as they were presented with their nursing badges.
The students from the School of Nursing, who are from both full-time and part-time programmes, attended the celebration at Ulster’s Coleraine campus which marked both their academic excellence and professional eligibility to practise.
Vice Chancellor Professor Richard Barnett told the nurses: “Graduates are entering the profession at one of the most challenging times and my message would be to follow your passion. This profession needs you and you can make a real difference with new ideas and I am confident you will make a real difference to patient care.
“More than any other programme at the University, nursing epitomises what we are about. We promote the economic, social and cultural wellbeing of the population in this region. The University of Ulster offers applied courses, which leads both to an academic award and a fitness to practice and nursing fits the mould perfectly.”
With over 1,000 nursing students ranging from pre registration, through to post registration specialist practice courses and those students engaged in specialised doctoral research studies in nursing and midwifery, the University is acknowledged across the UK as a leading centre of nursing research and teaching.
Dr Owen Barr, Head of the School of Nursing, told the ceremony: “Caring, as a professional attribute, is fundamental to the ethos of the School. We hope as the students go forward from today will continue to embrace the most fundamental aspect of nursing --- caring about people.”
Final year students in the School of Nursing will receive BSc/BSc Honours degrees at the University’s winter graduation ceremonies next month in Adult and Mental Health Nursing at the Millennium Forum in Derry, and well post-graduate certificates and diplomas in other specialist areas of nursing will also be conferred at the Jordanstown Graduation Ceremony.
Hugh McKenna, Dean of the Faculty of Life and Health Sciences said: “It is one of the most varied careers. You can work with older people, younger people, disabled people, everyone within the community. I wish you well and hope you have many future achievements and your career brings you happiness.”
Award Winners –
The Princess Macha Award
The Northern Bank Perpetual Shield
The Bank of Ireland Perpetual Shield
The Ulster Bank Perpetual Shield
The Donald Dawson Memorial Trust Award
Laura Gormley/Beverley Graham (Joint winners)
The Western Health and Social Care Trust Management Award
Kathleen McGowan/Jennifer McLaughlin (Joint winners)
The North and West Housing Award for Excellence in the Care of Older People
Elizabeth Buchanan/Triona Coleman (Joint winners)
The Professor Bowman Memorial Award for Leadership in Nursing
The Maura Hamill-McKenna Memorial Cup Award
The School of Nursing Award for Excellence in Nurse/Midwifery Education in the Clinical Learning Environment
The Association of Health Services Manager Prize
The Margaret Devlin Memorial Award for Excellence in Diabetes
INR Mona Grey Research Award for Undergraduate Research
The Hunter Apparell Award
The Royal College of Nursing Shield
The First Choice Shield
Elizabeth Ann Buchanan