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Herkimer BOCES nursing graduates, their families
recognized during 51st commencement ceremony

July 8, 2015

2015 LPN graduates
Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES adult practical nursing students take the stage for the 51st Commencement and Pledge Ceremony on Wednesday, July 1. More than 50 local adults graduate this year from the Herkimer BOCES LPN programs. For information about the nursing programs, go directly to the nursing portion of the website at lpn.herkimerboces.schoolfusion.us or call 315-895-2210.

HERKIMER – As more than 50 local adults recently graduated from Herkimer-Fulton-Hamilton-Otsego BOCES licensed practical nursing program, a common theme at the ceremony was thanking their families for support.

Kelly Colvin, who graduated from the full-time class, was chosen to give a speech for her class.  She talked about everyone being nervous when they started – building up from learning proper hand washing to working with mannequins for the first time and to doing clinical nursing.

Colvin pointed out that she and the other adult students in the full-time class spent 1,440 hours together. She thanked them for sticking together and helping each other.

As speakers did throughout the night, Colvin had others to thank as well.

“None of us would have made it to this point without the love and support of our families,” she said.

Herkimer BOCES has three adult practical nursing classes.  The 51st Commencement and Pledge Ceremony took place on Wednesday, July 1, at Herkimer High School. For the 2014-15 school year, 19 people graduated from the full-time class, 17 graduated from the part-time, evening class and 16 graduated from the part-time, day class.

One representative from each class was selected to give a farewell address: Colvin for the full-time class, Steven Williams from the part-time, evening class and Megan Perry from the part-time, day class.

Williams talked about the sacrifices the adult students had to make to get through the program and the value of the support from their families. He also recognized the other students in the class by having them stand up for applause.

Perry also talked about the sacrifices required and how being so busy in the class prepares you for the profession. She thanked the students’ families, friends and Herkimer BOCES instructors.

“I want to thank my classmates for never giving up and making it through the program,” she said.

During the ceremony, Sara Nicolette, the Herkimer BOCES LPN nursing program coordinator, presented the Special Recognition Awards.   She said she was proud of the students and their families.

A candle-lighting ceremony was conducted, and instructor Janet Vickers led the students in a nursing pledge. Herkimer BOCES Board of Education President Daniel LaLonde presented diplomas. Mary Kline, Herkimer BOCES director of adult, early childhood and outreach education, welcomed guests and pronounced the Class of 2015 graduated.

“Congratulations to all the graduates,” Kline said.

The guest speaker for the event was Lesa Steele, the assistant nurse manager for Maternal Child Services at Mohawk Valley Health System. She has been in nursing since 1983, when she graduated from the Herkimer BOCES licensed practical nursing program.

Steele congratulated the graduates and their families for a job well done.

“Every nurse needs a strong family behind them to do what they do,” she said.

Steele said that even though the students were graduating, it’s not the end because nursing and healthcare are always evolving.

“You will never stop learning,” she said.

As the adults go forward in their careers, their LPN education from Herkimer BOCES will be a huge asset, Steele said.

“They give you the building blocks you need to carry you through a lifetime of nursing,” she said.

Special Recognition Awards

The following were the graduates who won the Special Recognition Awards – including Academic Awards based on grades in the classes and Faculty Awards voted on by Herkimer BOCES nursing faculty:

Academic Award for Highest Average in Fundamentals of Nursing:
  • Full-time class: Dawn Kopet
  • Part-time, evening class: Lora Santiago
  • Part-time, day class: Melissa Jewell
Academic Award for Highest Average in Maternal Childhood Health:
  • Full-time class: Dawn Kopet
  • Part-time, evening class: Lora Santiago
  • Part-time, day class: Esfir Viti
Academic Award for Highest Average in Medical Surgical Nursing:
  • Full-time class: Dawn Kopet
  • Part-time, evening class: Lora Santiago
  • Part-time, day class: Samuel Tosi
Faculty Award for Most Professional and Academic Growth:
  • Full-time class: Brittany Robarge
  • Part-time, evening class: Tiffany Parkhurst
  • Part-time, day class: Ashley Peterson
Faculty Award for Best Clinical Nurse:
  • Full-time class: Tonya Roser
  • Part-time, evening class: Lisa Miller
  • Part-time, day class: Lisa Wolicki
Faculty Florence Nightingale Award (presented to students who demonstrate a positive and caring attitude that represents Nightingale):
  • Full-time class: Kendra Clarke
  • Part-time, evening class: Mary Kohler and Steven Williams.
  • Part-time, day class: Stacey Mazurowski
Class of 2015 graduates:

The following is a complete list of the Herkimer BOCES adult practical nursing graduates for the Class of 2015:

Full-time class:
  • Joanne Amuso
  • Shatasha Brown
  • Kendra Clarke
  • Kelly Colvin
  • Miranda Congdon
  • Emily Crim
  • Rebecca Fuller
  • Dawn Kopet
  • Lindsey Kopet
  • Kelly Lane
  • Melinda Manzer
  • Sha’Tiqua Mcfarland
  • Randy Meetze
  • Dianna Perruzzi
  • Taylor Ray
  • Brittany Robarge
  • Tonya Roser
  • Zachary Stallman
  • Kyle Werpechowski
Part-time evening class:
  • Samantha Anna
  • Shayla Blackshear
  • Shawnique Caesar
  • Melissa Fargo
  • Rebecca Ferguson
  • Katrina Knisely
  • Mary Kohler
  • Michelle Kosinski
  • Michelle Lamanna
  • Lisa Miller
  • Tiffany Parkhurst
  • Andrea Rudolph
  • Lora Santiago
  • Aaron Smith
  • Christina Sowich
  • Tina Veitch
  • Steven Williams
Part-time day class:
  • Pam Alveraz
  • Kylie Carpenter
  • Rebecca Dodge
  • Morgan Eckler
  • James Ferreira
  • Melissa Jewell
  • Stacey Mazurowski
  • Megan Perry
  • Ashley Peterson
  • Mandy Pomatto
  • Ashley Puleo
  • Robert Rocker
  • Crystal Shibley
  • Samuel Tosi
  • Esfir Viti

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