Graduation Brings Relief And Excitement For Five New Nurses
Standing alongside their families, five women were honored at a pinning ceremony Thursday night to celebrate their graduation from the University of Alaska Anchorage with an Associates Degree in Nursing.
The future nurses were able to take their coursework in Bethel through the University of Alaska Fairbanks, Kuskokwim Campus, even though their degree is from the University of Alaska Anchorage. Deanna Pavil is one of the graduates, and remembers the week she was accepted into the program very well:
“I got my acceptance letter to the nursing program the same week I found out I was pregnant. And so I knew going in that it was going to be tough. I had my son in the summer, so that following semester was probably to toughest semester that I had just because I was trying to adjust to being a new mom on top of being a full-time nursing student," Pavil said.
Pavil’s father encouraged her to pursue the degree, despite the added challenge, and she says she’s glad she did. According to Academic Counselor Jessice Glore, Pavil also received financial help from a program designed to get Alaska Natives into nursing jobs in their region: RRANN, which stands for Recruitment and Retention of Alaska Natives into Nursing.
“RRANN helps them by providing materials, scholarships, books, and tutoring services," said Glore.
All five of the nurses have to take one final state board exam before they can begin practicing, but all say that they are hopeful about the future.