Nursing students’ perseverance celebrated at Athens, Demorest events
Piedmont University nursing students were applauded as they entered the space where a “Heroes Learn Here” pizza party was about to start. Faculty from the R.H. Daniel School of Nursing wanted to celebrate their perseverance and success.
“We put this lunch together to acknowledge that we know you have been out on the frontlines giving of yourself and persevering through nursing school. We thank you for putting yourself out there and continuing to succeed in nursing school,” said Christine Kaiser, assistant professor, nursing.
The parties were held on April 27 in Athens and April 29 in Demorest, just prior to National Nurses Week, May 6-12. The students had finished up clinicals, which is the hands-on portion of their training. In the face of COVID-19, they were celebrated as heroes.
“The dedication and bravery you are showing by joining this profession right now—we are in awe of it, and we appreciate you for it,” said Jennifer Kelley, associate professor, nursing.
“You went in not knowing if those patients were going to test positive or negative for COVID. You were caring. You still put your gloves and your gowns on, and you still performed CPR, you still rocked, hugged, held hands, loved on, and held cameras or whatever you had to do,” said Laura Starrett, nursing professor. “It didn’t go unnoticed by us.”
Patients suffered during the pandemic, clearly, but students also worked with medical professionals who were exhausted and on the verge of burnout.
COVID also changed how classes were taught at Piedmont. Dr. Tabatha Anderson, associate dean of the R.H. Daniel School of Nursing, said students had shown “incredible flexibility when we had to change things immediately and with short notice.”
Starrett said the students rallied in spite of the obstacles.
“They have done it with such pride and dignity,” Starrett said. “We are so proud of them.”
Click through the gallery below for photos.