CASSADAGA - The Erie 2 BOCES School of Practical Nursing at the Cassadaga Job Corps Academy marked the end of a one-year journey for its most recent group of graduate nurses. The class, a partnership between Erie 2 BOCES and the Cassadaga Job Corps Academy, is an intensive program providing young men and women the training and education to take the next step in their nursing career by becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse. This class now begins final preparations to take the NCLEX state licensing exam. The students hail from all over the country, from Chautauqua County to as far away as California and Washington. The graduates are Alyssa Barber, Zachary Dulski, Cheeyan Evans, Jade Fielding, Shantia Fullwood, Jenell Hillaire, Cory Krause, Julio Meza, Thalia Pascal, Barbara Puckett, Shelby Reagle, Sweety Sharma, Tracey Taylor, Kirbie Veitenheimer, Jeanine Vincent and Iyonna Williams.
During the presentation several awards were handed out to the class. Julio Meza was recognized as the class valedictorian. During his address to his classmates and audience he stated that "Our future holds trials and tribulations. A loved one will need advice, a nervous child, reassurance; the elderly will desire an open ear. It is our duty to rise up at that moment and respond."
Zachary Dulski, of Fredonia was honored as the class salutatorian. Other awards included Outstanding Academic/Clinical Nurse, awarded to Shantia Fullwood; Outstanding Bedside Nurse, awarded to Cheeyan Evans; and Perfect Attendance, awarded to Thalia Pascal and Barbara Puckett.
Pictured above are the most recent graduates of the Erie 2 BOCES School of Practical Nursing at the Cassadaga Job Corps Academy.
Addressing the class as keynote speaker was Jean Gustafson, an experienced RN and currently the Health Occupations lead instructor at the academy. Gustafson discussed her career and shared her experiences with the class to help prepare them to enter the workforce. Also addressing the class was Jeanine Vincent, class president. In addition to student recognition the class took time to acknowledge the hard work and efforts of their instructors by presenting them with cards and gifts. The instructors present were Terrie Bowen, Marilyn Spitzer, Dorothy Lauricella and Ruth Sipp.
Graduates received certificates, caps and pins presented by the faculty of the Nursing School. Following individual recognition the entire class, as well all nurses in attendance, recited the nurse's pledge to affirm their commitment to their profession. Ann Anderson, academy director, concluded the program by reminding the graduates of their obligation to provide the best care possible and always take the time to get to know those around you.
Students enrolled in the LPN program at the Cassadaga Job Corps Academy are co-enrolled with both the Academy and Erie 2 BOCES. The program consists of classroom lecture and instruction, development of nursing skills and techniques and rotations through local healthcare facilities that allow students firsthand clinical knowledge of the duties of a nurse. All students receive instruction and clinical supervision from BOCES staff while supportive services and a scholarship to attend the program are provided by Job Corps. For more information about the LPN program at the Cassadaga Job Corps Academy please contact Mike Pietrkiewicz at 595-4298 or visit cassadaga.jobcorps.gov.