It is an exciting journey for the students to learn and practice their academics outside of the four walls of a classroom. Nursing students gain additional information and skills through real-life experience and practice in a course that requires more than just theory.
This path has already begun for 208 aspiring nurses of Pines City Colleges (PCC). The College of Nursing celebrated the 57th Capping, Pinning, and Lighting ceremonies on October 25, 2023, at the Baguio Convention and Cultural Center. These are highly important to every nursing student since they herald the beginning of their journey to formally serve the hospital and care for their patients with their clinical instructor. Florence Nightingale, the Lady of the Lamp, who made rounds at night to provide care services to the wounded soldiers during a war, inspired these ceremonies, which became a tradition for nurses.
PCC’s Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. Marian Grace Gascon, formally opened the occasion. In her remarks, she welcomed the parents, guardians, and other family members of the students, the faculty members, the dean of the College of Nursing, heads, guests, and the guest speaker for the said occasion.
Dr. Gascon also shared with the audience and the nursing students the symbolism and importance of the nurses’ cap, candle lighting, pin, and lamp. A nurse cap is received from a registered nurse, signaling their acceptance into the profession. It is done in a kneeling position as a gesture of humility and honesty. Candle lighting is a symbol of the lamp that will shed light on the nurse who works day and night. The lamp brings brightness and leads the way with warmth, love, acceptance, and compassion for every nurse interaction with all the sick. The pin that is provided to the male nurses is placed adjacent to the heart, as it reflects love and kindness toward everyone.
Dean Racal proudly introduced the guest speaker, Mr. Jerzam P. Viernes, who is a proud alumnus of PCC College of Nursing. He holds a Master of Arts in Nursing. He is also an emergency medical technician, a registered nurse, and a licensed midwife.
Mr. Viernes’ loyalty and dedication in all his work led him to great achievements. He entered as a staff nurse at the Guimba General Hospital Inc. in 2010. After a few years, in 2012, he transferred to the Guimba Community Hospital, where he is currently working as a chief nurse. In addition, he has been working at the said community hospital since 2014 as the coordinator for disease surveillance and since 2016 as the coordinator for newborn screening.
Mr. Viernes’ example of how he went from being a typical nursing student to obtaining four degrees and landing a job at their local hospital motivated the students. “Basta may tiyaga, may nilaga (If you persevere, you will reap the price of your labor),” he told. This indeed has also shown his passion and commitment to serving his hometown and the sick.
The signal to serve in the hospital and community had finally arrived.
Ms. Sereño, Level 1 and 2 Coordinator and Instructor, introduced the 165 female nursing student candidates and 46 male nursing student candidates following the inspirational speech. Dean Racal then conducted the capping, pinning, and candle-lighting ceremonies with assistance from the candidates’ class advisers. The students were accompanied by their parents in accepting their journey as nurses.
Class Instructor Ms. Melanie P. Ben-at then guided the nursing students through the Pledge of the Nightingale. In their oath, they pledged to refrain from harm, exercise discretion, and be committed to their role as nurses. Meanwhile, Mr. Chisum C. Indalos led the nursing students to the nurse’s prayer to conclude the ceremony. Then the students sang their capping and pinning song “From My Heart and Through My Hand” by Florence Nightingale as an artistic representation of their acceptance and dedication as nurses.
Ms. Vivien E. Rios, a Nursing Instructor, officially brought the 57th capping, pinning, and lighting ceremonies to a close. #