CHESTER and MIDLOTHIAN, Va. – “Each of you hold that healing gift, and it’s time for you to share it with the world,” said...

CHESTER and MIDLOTHIAN, Va. – “Each of you hold that healing gift, and it’s time for you to share it with the world,” said Anissa Ellis, RN, as she addressed John Tyler Community College’s Fall 2016 nursing graduate candidates during the fall Pinning Ceremony on December 15, 2016. Ellis, an alumna of Tyler’s Nursing Program, graduated from the college in December 2014 and went to work as a registered nurse for VCU Medical Center as the first in a pilot program designed to train new graduates in a wide variety of fields. She is now a RN case manager with AT Home Care and is pursuing her bachelor’s in nursing from the University of Alabama. During her address at Tyler’s pinngJTCCPinning Ceremony, Ellis offered advice to her new peers. She reminded them of the demands of their chosen career and encouraged them to take time to care for themselves; to listen and learn from those around them; to be kind; to ask for support; and to complete all necessary paperwork but never forget that on the other side of that form is a human being. “Remember, the person at the other end of that report is another’s best friend or child, that he or she is another person’s reason for living,” said Ellis. Tyler’s Nursing Director Tammy Colatruglio also encouraged the graduates to remember that nursing is about people, because it is far too easy to get caught up in the tasks associated with a nursing career. “As nurses, we engage with people when they are at their most vulnerable,” she said. “This is a revered place.”

Of the 42 Fall 2016 nursing graduate candidates whose achievements were celebrated at the ceremony, the following list include graduates in the Village News readership area (zip codes appear next to name):

Collen Boudreaux (23237)
Tamara Carter (23834)
Elizabeth Champ (23831)
Taylor Desmond (23838)
Ashley Fitzwater (23832)
Patrice Fleshman (23237)
Nicole Glass (23832)
Nancy Helring (23834)
Joseph Karakasians (23831)
Joan Mabe (23838)
Lauryn Piner (23836)
Shannon Rose (23113)
Tessa Schanz (23114)
Erial Seng (23236)
Jameel Shabazz (23235)
Carina Simpkins (23831)
Ashlee Turner (23831)
Pinning dates back to the 1880s. The pin, given to graduate candidates, symbolizes the school of nursing where the students earned their clinical experience, achieved academic credentials and began their socialization into the profession. The ceremony marks the completion of that rigorous training and is often viewed with the same importance as commencement.

John Tyler Community College is the fifth largest of the 23 community colleges in Virginia. With campuses in Chester and Midlothian and off-campus classrooms throughout the area, John Tyler offers affordable, quality programs for students who want to earn a degree or certificate, transfer to a four-year college or university, train for the workforce, or switch careers. The College, which served more than 14,100 students during the 2015-16 academic year, offers more than 60 majors, including associate degrees and certificates. The institution also serves more than 13,000 non-credit trainees and over 1,000 companies and government agencies annually through the Community College Workforce Alliance.