Nursing White Coat and Hand Blessing Ceremony
The nursing department hosts this annual ceremony at the beginning of the fall semester. The White Coat Ceremony is a rite of passage to emphasize the importance of compassionate patient care at the very start of training. Undergraduate nursing students are invited to recite an oath to dedicating themselves to providing the highest quality care and services to all clients. Students wear their embroidered white nursing coats during the ceremony and receive a Keeping Healthcare Human pin from The Arnold P. Gold Foundation to remind them of how important compassion, caring and humanism is to the healing of their clients. Additionally, each nursing student has their hands blessed by the nursing faculty to symbolize the healing of human touch as nurses.
Above: 10 of the 18 eligible Carroll College nursing students inducted into Sigma during the 2020-21 school year.
There were 18 senior nursing students who met the eligibility requirements for membership in the nursing honor society Sigma this year. A socially distanced, but celebratory, induction ceremony was held on the Carroll College campus on Wednesday, October 28, 2020, with ten inductees attending in person and others, including family and friends, attending virtually. At the induction ceremony, students learn about the privileges and responsibilities that come with membership in this international nursing society and receive an honors cord as a symbol of their achievement and membership.
The Zeta Upsilon Chapter of Sigma was formed through the joint efforts of the nursing faculty at Carroll College and Montana State University School of Nursing to encourage and recognize superior scholarship and/or leadership achievement in nursing at either the undergraduate or graduate level in the state of Montana. The purposes of Sigma are to: 1) recognize superior achievement; 2) recognize the development of leadership qualities; 3) foster high professional standards; 4) encourage creative work; and 5) strengthen commitment to the goals and purposes of the nursing profession.
Over the past five years, annually an average of approximately half of the students in each 400-level cohort have been invited to join Sigma. This is indicative of the strong academic success and leadership we have seen in the Carroll nursing students. Sigma encourages students to perform a philanthropy project each year. In April 2021 during Sexual Awareness month, the Sigma members elected to provide a discussion on healthy boundaries. They invited a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) to campus to speak and created an information table titled the “Do and Donuts of Healthy Boundaries” with the first 50 participants earning a free donut coupon from a local donut shop. Several Sigma students donated blood during spring 2020 COVID-19 collection drives and assisted with Carroll Cares’ outreach to elders sheltering in place during the pandemic. Other projects Sigma members have hosted in the past five years include creating valentines for the hospitalized veterans at VA Montana Healthcare in Helena, MT, collecting supplies to donate to a Montana medical mission who traveled to Africa, gathering warm clothing and blankets for the local homeless shelter, doing a drive for new stuffed animals for preemies in the Neonatal Intensive Care in Missoula, Montana and for policeman and fireman to give to children in various situations in Helena, Montana.
The Carroll College Student Nurses’ Association is the college chapter for the state and national Student Nurses’ Association. CCSNA brings students together to help further the growth of nursing, providing opportunities for education, experience, service and fellowship. Attendance at state and national conventions allows students to have an active voice in the future of nursing. CCSNA is involved with a variety of campus and community events and projects, including:
Our student nurses from the Carroll College Student Nurses’ Association (CCSNA) collected items throughout late January and early February to make 60 hygiene kits fully stocked with soap, deodorant, washcloths, socks, combs, hand sanitizer, reusable masks, and so much more. The kits were donated to God’s Love Shelter in Helena. Story and photos
Shodair Children’s Hospital Christmas Gift Drive
The Carroll College Student Nurses Association is doing their part to give back to the Helena community. Each year the Carroll College Student Nurses Association, or CCSNA, holds a Christmas gift drive for Shodair Children's Hospital, a residential psychiatric treatment center that is one of their nursing clinical sites. CCSNA tries to collect as many items (clothing and toys) as possible for the children and adolescents in the hospital.
Tips on Interviewing
CCSNA brings in speakers, including from the local hospital, to guide student nurses on how to successfully interview for jobs.
Baby Shower for Florence Crittenton Home
CCSNA has hosted “baby showers” in previous years in the nursing lab with a demonstration "live" birth with Noelle, the birthing mannequin. CCSNA provides refreshments, baby shower games and prizes, and asks attendees to bring items such as diapers, onesies, binkies, etc. to donate to the local Florence Crittenton Home that helps pregnant and parenting teens.
CCSNA-designed nursing t-shirts and sweatshirts are worn with pride by nursing students, faculty and alumni. The group usually offers a shirt sale annually.
CCSNA organizes mentor groups to bring together nursing students at various levels of the program to support each other, especially the newest nursing students, and hosts events to bring mentor groups together for fun and fellowship.
Self-Care Activities & Community Volunteering
CCSNA encourages self-care and organizes fun activities such as cookie making and ice cream socials. Another way to deal with stress is through putting others first and students enjoy giving back to the community through activities such as tying blankets for elders and volunteering at different places in the community, including God’s Love Homeless Shelter and various nursing homes. CCSNA students also volunteer and participate in events supporting Alzheimer’s Awareness, Mental Health (NAMI), and Suicide Prevention.
Students love to stop by the hospitality cart in the nursing office for a cup of tea or some goodies and many of these treats are provided by CCSNA.
Blood Pressure Drives
CCSNA has set up a booth at various campus and community activities offering blood pressure readings. Upperclassman are happy to teach younger students if they don’t know how to take a blood pressure yet.
Helping with STEM event
CCSNA volunteers enjoyed helping inspire middle school students interested in nursing at the annual STEM event held at the college in February.
CCSNA coordinates a thank you breakfast for nursing department faculty and staff at the end of the semester.