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May 25, 2023

OCC’s 2023 Nursing Graduates Honored at Annual Pinning Ceremony

Nurses Pinning Ceremony Group Picture

TOMS RIVER, NJ — Students from the Ocean County College Nursing Class received their nursing pins at the Annual Nurses’ Pinning Ceremony on Tuesday, May 23 on the College’s main campus in Toms River. The graduates successfully completed a two-year course of study leading to an Associate in Applied Science degree in Nursing during the fall of 2022 and spring of 2023.

“The pinning ceremony is a nursing school tradition,” Dr. Teresa Walsh, OCC’s Dean of the School of Nursing and Health Sciences, told the graduates assembled on the College’s Gateway Building lawn. “It represents your transition from role of student to professional nurse.”

The tradition of pinning originally dates back to the 1860s, when Florence Nightingale was presented with a medal for her services as a military nurse. Nightingale in turn rewarded her own nursing students with medals as a symbol of their hard work and dedication. These medals were later replaced with pins that identify the nursing school the students attended.

Ocean County College continues this tradition by presenting each graduating nurse with a pin that represents the completion of the OCC nursing program. Graduates also recite the OCC School of Nursing Dedication Pledge. The pledge was written by Velina Andrewski, a nursing graduate from OCC’s class of 1984, and is based on the original pledge written to honor Florence Nightingale.

More than $42,000 in scholarships and awards was also presented to nursing students during the ceremony.
The ceremony was televised live on and on Ocean TV-20 via Comcast Channel 20 and Verizon FiOS of Northern Ocean County Channel 24. Repeat broadcasts will be available throughout the remainder of the month. For more information, visit

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Dori Londres
Marketing & Communications Writer/Editor
732 255 0400 x2308

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