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The Orangeburg-Calhoun Technical College Associate Degree Nursing program held its annual pinning ceremony Monday, May 13, at First Baptist Church of Orangeburg.

During the ceremony, 51 registered nursing graduates received their pins.

The keynote speaker was Gayle Bishop, retiring adjunct nursing instructor at the college. She applauded the graduates’ perseverance and determination, and said she was proud to all call each member of OCtech’s 36th ADN class a nursing colleague.

“Follow the golden rule. Be fully present and listen,” she said. “Our patients remember us. You have to be able to trust that you always gave good care.”

April Goodwin received the Outstanding Academic Achievement Award for highest GPA in the traditional class, and Tasia Dillitte received the honor for the transitional class. Uniqa Roberson (traditional) received the Delura R. Knight Spirit of Nursing Award. Also receiving special honors at the ceremony were Latasha Keller (traditional), Leadership Award; Margo Welch (traditional) and Chinwendu Onu (transitional), Clinical Excellence Award; and Michael Still (traditional) and Edna Sanders (transitional), Best All-Around Award.

In addition, seniors who served as officers or delegates in OCtech’s Student Nurses Association were presented with a blue-and-white honor cord to be worn at graduation.

Goodwin has waited a long time to receive her nursing pin.

“This is actually 16 years in the making,” she said. “I started in high school as a nursing assistant, and it just kind of fell into place these past couple of years for me to go back to school. I knew this was my passion. I’ve worked as a certified nursing assistant and as a medical assistant. I had too much knowledge not to take it to the next step.”

OCtech was the obvious choice for Goodwin when she was ready to return to school.

“I’d heard good things about OCtech and all of their medical programs,” the Eastover resident said. “The instructors have been amazing and supportive, and I learned a lot. This is probably one of the best programs in the state, and it’s definitely the best in the area. Nursing is a great field, and these instructors will get you where you need to go.”

For more information about OCtech’s Nursing and Health Science programs, call 803-535-1279 or visit octech.edu/academics/health-science-programs/.

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