20 graduate with Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing
GINA, GUYANA, Monday, November 14, 2016
The Association of Guyanese Nurses and Allied Professional (AGNAP) recognised 20 nursing graduates of the Bachelor’s of Science Degree of the University of Guyana (UG) on Saturday.
At the award ceremony at the Tower Suites, Main Street, held under the theme ‘Adopting a habit of excellence, leading positive change’, Minister within the Ministry of Public Health, Dr. Karen Cummings, encouraged the batch to apply the skills learnt during the course to practical situations to save lives. The Minister added that as nurses, they should be compassionate since their profession is one of the most important ones in the health sector.
Garfield Bryan, who graduated with a Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.9, emerged as the valedictorian of the nursing programme. Bryan said that, “great things can come out of UG, just like something great coming out of Nazareth.” This was said in reference to more emphasis being placed on the development of the programme. The nurses completing the programme are now more liable to move on to completing the Master’s Degree in Nursing and other tertiary learning programmes.
Bryan also received the Gwen Tross Award for his outstanding commitment to ensuring activities under the programme were co-ordinated and executed in a timely manner. Gwendoline Tross is the founder of the Gwen Tross Research Foundation which was launched earlier this year in collaboration with UG and the Guyana Nurses’ Association.
Other students received awards for ‘Best Research student” and for distinction in the programme.
Nursing Co-ordinator, Afesha Marshall outlined some of the challenges faced by students during the two-year programme, and lobbied the relevant officials for intervention. Marshall said, one of the biggest challenges continues to be the fact that students (who have full time jobs) seldom get time off from work to attend classes and this affects the attendance rates and sometimes causes them to miss important examinations.
Additionally, capacity building of lecturers is required, since there is continued development within the local health sector.
The Pan American, World Health Organisation (PAHO/WHO) has played a major role in contributing to the development of the nursing programme. PAHO/WHO offers opportunities for graduate students to be trained in global health, particularly in the areas related to nursing and allied health personnel as interns.
Dr. William Adu-Krow, PAHO/WHO’s country representative gave the charge to the graduates by identifying three traits that the new nurses
must live by in order to excel at what they do. Dr. Adu-Krow encouraged them to express gratitude, excel in relationships and embrace a lifelong commitment to learning by stressing “learning is never wasted.”
AGNAP has adopted UG’s Bachelor of Science Nursing programme and has given continuous support to nursing education in Guyana through bursaries.
Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, Dr. Emmanuel Cummings urged the graduates to be facilitators of the programme’s extension that is most likely expected to start in Berbice soon. The Dean said that there is need for the programme to be implemented at the University’s Tain campus in Berbice however; persons who have experienced the course are the ones who should facilitate it at that location.
The class of 2016, agreed that there should be a larger intake of students desirous of acquiring the Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Nursing. The programme currently facilitates a maximum of 30 students annually.
By: Delicia Haynes