SBCC Nursing Program marks endings and new beginnings at Dec. 15 “pinning” ceremony

On Friday, Dec. 15, the most recent cohort of nursing graduates from Santa Barbara City College (SBCC) will formally complete the program with a “pinning” ceremony, earning themselves an Associate Degree in Science in Nursing (ADN). The graduates will have the distinction of completing the program having gone through real-life experiences of the Covid-19 pandemic in the medical field.

This particular cohort – made up of 18 Licensed Vocational Nursing (LVN) Bridge students and 20 ADN generic students – is special, according to Dept. Chair/Director, Associate Degree Nursing and ADN Program Director Mary Sullivan MSN-Ed, RNC- MNN, as they are “the last group that went through nursing school at SBCC during the full-on Covid-19 pandemic.” Curriculum for the program includes hands-on training at Cottage Hospital, where students and instructors from this cohort experienced varying degrees of challenges and stresses working in the medical field during and after the pandemic.

Upon completion of the program, many of the new ADN degree-holders are hired into the New Grad program at Santa Barbara’s Cottage Hospital. The new nurses are assigned a preceptor — an experienced practitioner who provides supervision during clinical practice — for many weeks depending on their chosen area of nursing specialization.

SBCC’s Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) program prepares students to become competent entry-level professional registered nurses, lifelong learners and active community members. The program is approved by the California State Board of Registered Nursing and accredited by Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing. Graduates are qualified to take the state board examination for licensure as registered nurses.

For Sullivan, this graduating cohort is also special because her daughter Kathryn will be among the nursing graduates. Kathryn, the sixth of Sullivan’s nine children, received an Associate degree from SBCC in 2018. She was also the captain of the women’s soccer team and attended SBCC’s Study Abroad program in Spain in the fall of 2018.

All of Mary Sullivan’s nine children will be in attendance on Friday to cheer on their sister.

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