Outstanding nursing students awarded

Director of Nursing Jere Hammer, Dr. Beth Lewis, student Meghan Williams, student Jillian Clark, student SeaNade Carter and Dean of Continuing Education Carla Boone. Not pictured, nursing student Chrys Ugorji.

On May 13, College of the Mainland Associate Degree Nursing Program faculty and staff honored 83 graduates. Four stood out for excellence.

From the May graduating class, SeaNade Carter earned the Student of the Year Award and Jillian Clark received the Outstanding Clinical Performance Award. From the July graduating class, professors honored Meghan Williams with the Student of the Year Award and Chrys Ugorji with the Outstanding Clinical Performance Award from the July graduating class.

SeaNade Carter, of Texas City, plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in nursing, specializing in her passion - women’s services and labor and delivery.

“The birth of my second son in 2013 re-sparked my love for nursing. My nurses were everything I want to be as a nurse. I look forward to being as great to my patients as they were to me,” said Carter.

She returned to school and conquered classes, clinicals and exams. 

“I feel that each one of my instructors played a role in helping me to succeed. I had some instructors who gave me tough love and also instructors who were more nurturing, but they all pushed me in some form or fashion to become successful not only in the program but in my nursing career.”

Meghan Williams, of Santa Fe, plans to continue her education to earn a bachelor’s degree in nursing.

“After being diagnosed with diabetes mellitus and being cared for by the nurses at Texas Children's Hospital, I knew nursing was my calling,” said Williams. “I got to experience firsthand what having wonderful nurses was like and decided that I wanted to be that amazing nurse one day.”

She excelled in clinicals at local hospitals and other health care facilities.

“After you get over that initial fear, the hospitals become your classroom. During clinicals you learn so much that your textbooks don't teach you,” said Williams. “You learn how to be that nurse that makes a difference. That first time a patient thanks you for taking care of them makes all of the hard work and stress of nursing school worth it, and you get this feeling like you are where you are meant to be.”

Chrys Ugorji, of southwest Houston, brought emergency medical services experience to the COM nursing program. He worked at Force EMS in Houston for almost three years.

“I learned a lot from my clinical experience. One of the best things I learned especially after working as a charge nurse during this last clinical was time management,” said Ugorji. “I learned how to identify, plan, prioritize goals and utilize time wisely.”

His dad’s illness inspired him to become a health care professional.

“I was fascinated with the level of care and affection that was shown to my dad by the nurses years back when he got sick. The seed to become a nurse was sowed in that very moment. Everything I have done so far both my career in the EMS field has been geared toward attaining that goal.”

The COM Nursing Program launched with Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) Program classes in 1972. The Vocational Nursing (VN) Program was established 35 years later in 2005. The ADN Program prepares graduates to be registered nurses. Today the nursing programs boast graduates employed at facilities across the Gulf Coast including Texas Children’s Hospital, Clear Lake Regional Hospital, University of Texas-Medical Branch and Memorial Hermann.

For more information on the COM Nursing Program, visit www.com.edu/nursing.

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