On March 30, 2017, I graduated from LPN school at OCM-BOCES in Liverpool, NY. My classmates selected me to give the graduation speech, and I was honored to do so.
I consulted other speeches I found on the Internet for ideas and inspiration. I am posting my speech for the benefit of others who may need some ideas.
What follows is the text of that speech.
evening. First I'd like to thank my classmates for choosing me to
speak tonight. It's quite an honor.
is a momentous day! Almost a year ago, on April 11, more than 25 of
us gathered for our first day of LPN school. A number of our
classmates dropped out for a variety of reasons. Nineteen of us
remain, and here we are!
than the first year of motherhood, this has been the most intense 12
months of my life. I felt especially overwhelmed for two reasons—I
hadn't been inside a classroom for 30 years and I had no experience
in the medical field.
much like that first year nurturing an infant, nursing school became
all consuming. Ms. Badore warned us that life would be put on hold
and, except for studying, attending classes and our clinical
training, it was; but life always finds a way....
celebrated births and a marriage. We tended to sick family members.
We mourned as loved ones passed away. We missed children's school
events, birthdays and other milestones.
it all, we learned about each other: why we want to be nurses, our
individual plans for the future, who has the cutest dog, cat or
guinea pig, that sort of thing.
marks the end of our time together and the beginning of our nursing
careers, after passing our boards, of course. We will be pursuing the
most trusted profession in America, as named by Gallup for the 15th
that as you struggle with working nights, as you tend to patients who
are on palliative care, as you feel exhausted, physically and
mentally. Everything you do as a nurse matters, and matters deeply.
Be proud of that.
offer huge thanks to our friends and families for their patience and
love during this challenging year. Thank you for giving us the space
and quiet we needed to study, for understanding when we couldn't
attend a family event, for honoring our desire to become nurses.
offer huge thanks to our instructors for their wisdom and guidance
while we learned about and practiced giving a bed bath, administering
medications and reporting unusual vital signs, among the myriad
skills a nurse must learn.
wouldn't be here without any of you.
closing, I wish all the luck to my classmates as they either look for
an LPN job or decide to pursue their RN. I am certain all of you will
find success. No matter in which direction your career takes you, you
will never stop learning.
these words of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing:
“Let us never consider ourselves finished nurses....we must be
learning all of our lives.”