Sixty-one students who completed the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center El Paso Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program were recognized during a commencement and pinning ceremony at the Plaza Theatre Dec. 15, alongside 25 registered nurses who completed the school’s R.N. to B.S.N. program.
For Precious C. Ohiagu, a career in nursing seemed predestined for her.
“I’ve always wanted to be a nurse,” Ohiagu said after the ceremony. “I have a family full of nurses. My mom is a certified nursing assistant, and my aunt and my cousins are B.S.N.s. So, I’ve always been around and surrounded by a lot of health care workers. My drive for it just heightened when I became a CNA.”
Ohiagu described the Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program as “very tough.”
“You have to be able to prioritize, and be able to be not only a self-learner, but a team learner,” Ohiagu said, describing how to succeed.
Now that the intensive 16-month program is over, Ohiagu will have a few weeks off before she begins a residency at a hospital in Houston.
TTUHSC El Paso was granted separate accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) in June, and this was the first GGHSON commencement in which the graduates received a diploma with the TTUHSC El Paso seal. Formerly, TTUHSC El Paso was covered as an affiliate of TTUHSC in Lubbock, Texas.
During the ceremony, the graduates were presented with a nursing pin by a person of their choosing, such as a friend or family member. The pinning tradition honors newly graduated nurses entering the nursing profession.
“Our graduates are to be commended for their hard work and dedication,” said Stephanie Woods, Ph.D., R.N., dean of the GGHSON. “For 16 months, they have had to put other things aside as they studied and learned. We are proud of the impact they will make on health care in El Paso and Texas.”
Ninety percent of GGHSON graduates stay local, Woods said.