Originally published Friday, February 8, 2019 at 08:47p.m.

Yavapai College shined a spotlight Dec. 14 on the latest graduates of the college’s highly regarded nursing program when 39 future nurses from across Yavapai County participated in a traditional pinning ceremony.

The college’s latest nursing graduates thanked family members, scholarship donors, their professors and each other as, one-by-one, each accepted a pin from a loved one on the stage of the Yavapai College Performing Arts Center.

In her keynote address, departing Verde Valley Nursing Professor Sandra Johnson recounted some of her fondest memories and the significant technological changes during her 15-year tenure.

“I found something special here at Yavapai College. Coming to work every day to these students, to this campus, has been exhilarating… I will miss my colleagues, but most of all I will miss the students. They were the reason I woke up in the morning.”

Johnson said the winter 2018 group of graduates had “a profound effect on her” from the first day of their journeys two years ago. “My heart is touched by these students’ openness and commitment to make a difference.” She closed her speech by revealing a pink “Make A Difference” T-shirt underneath her professor’s robes: “This is for you,” she said to the graduates.

The nurse-pinning ceremony also featured a traditional lamp-lighting ceremony and reading of the Florence Nightingale Pledge. The final line of the pledge is, “I will be loyal to my work and devoted towards the welfare of those committed to my care.”

Information about the Yavapai College Nursing Program, how to apply and forthcoming pre-nursing workshops is available on the college website: yc.edu/nursing. Or, call 928-776-2017.

Following are the latest graduates of the YC Nursing Program at the Prescott and Verde Valley campuses: Lizbeth Acosta, Victoria Angel, Steven Austin, Jessica Bahadir, Sarah Bristol, Candace Budd, Kelly Burgest, Donna Buss, Jacob Clark, Christy Cowand, Charlotte Doherty, Jennifer Downey, Mary Ann Dumlao, Kevin Eastman, Josey Greer, Elaine Hedden, Erin Hines, Chrissy Holmes, Sabrina Kelli, Sarah McBride, Cate McCabe, Teri McMillan, Lyndsey Miller, Mary Miller, Rainbow Miller, Shayne Montes, Dusty Norman, Anna Nunnelly, Amanda Payment, Angela Payne, Roxanne Rentschler, Amber Rippy, Tiffany Rowland, Brian Rugroden, Cydney Rumpf, Jazmin Sapien, Dane Shwery, Beau Tudor and Logan Weir.