This article is written by Karina C. Abul and Christine Joy D. Oria, SONAHBS – Nursing Program Senior Student Nurses
The Saint Louis University School of Allied Health and Biologic Studies (SONAHBS) nursing program celebrated its 45th Capping, Pinning, and Candle Lighting Ceremony on October 21, 2022 at the Prince Bernhard Gym with the theme, “Passionis ac Muneris: Igniting Louisian Nurses’ Passion to Serve.” The event was attended by all the nursing program department heads and coordinators. The momentous ceremony commenced with a Mass presided over by Rev. Fr. Emery Mwako Ebumea.
The Capping, Pinning, and Candle Lighting Ceremony is the highlight of every student nurse’s journey, which symbolizes the beginning of their socialization into the nursing profession. It is an annual celebration for 2nd-year student nurses to signify that they accept the challenges of the nursing profession and are now ready to enter the actual hospital setting.
Students, parents, instructors, and guests were welcomed by the Dean of SONAHBS, Dr. Ann Opina, with her opening remarks. This was followed by an uplifting message through a video presentation from Rev. Fr. Gilbert B. Sales, CICM, the president of SLU. To keep the momentum going, Dr. Aldren Remon, the chief nurse of SLU-SHMC, delivered an inspiring message to the candidates, emphasizing the process of growth likened to how a simple caterpillar transforms into a beautiful butterfly. Those words reminded each one about their infinite potential to grow to be better nurses in the future. He pointed out that a Louisian nurse is someone who does more than required and cares more than they are supposed to.
The candidates were proudly presented by their department head, Prof. Rachelle Gay Pacial. With sheer delight, each candidate went up the stage with their parents and significant others, prepared to be capped or pinned. The Prince Bernhard Gym was then illuminated as the 256 Level 2 student nurses lit their candles and stated their oath as nurses through the Nightingale’s Pledge led by Prof. Joeynah Pearl Acebuque.
The event not only highlights the student nurses but also gives credit to the real heroes behind every student nurse’s success — their parents. Nidane Kirsten Solomon delivered a heartfelt message to every parent, showing gratitude for their support and sacrifices that made it possible for them to be where they are now. To express their thankfulness, the Level 2 student nurses sang in harmony to the song entitled, “Home.” As a culmination, Dr. Elizabeth Bautista, the associate dean of the nursing program, delivered her closing remarks congratulating the batch for achieving another milestone in their lives.
The event would not be possible without the efforts of the different heads and committee members, namely: Prof. John Balignasay as the Capping Coordinator/Chair, Prof. Cheryl Danglipen as the Capping Co-chair, Prof Gianna Kier as the Technical Committee, and Prof. Katherine Faye Villar as the Mass coordinator. In addition, the SLU parish extended their assistance while the SLU Glee club lent their captivating voices, contributing to the event’s success.
Congratulations, Batch 2025! Your journey has just begun. May you persevere on your path and embrace the Louisian spirit until you can finally say, “I made it”.