Published on December 13, 2019 by Sara Roman  

Samford University’s College of Health Sciences held its fall commencement ceremony Friday, Dec. 13, presenting bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees to 99 graduates from three of the college’s four schools.

Ida Moffett School of Nursing awarded 28 Bachelor of Science in Nursing, one Master of Science in Nursing and 20 Doctor of Nursing Practice. The School of Health Professions awarded 25 Bachelor of Science, and the School of Public Health awarded three Bachelor of Science, 12 Master of Public Health, nine Master of Science and one Master of Science in Health Informatics.

Three students, representing each school, addressed their peers, families and professors as they spoke on the theme of calling and reflected on their individual journeys to the graduation milestone. 

“Each of us could have been placed anywhere, and at any time; but for some reason God chose to place us here, in 2019, graduating from Samford University and ready to press on toward our calling,” said Sarah Mohan, a Master of Science in nutrition graduate from the School of Public Health. “It’s time to use and to put into action the education, skills and knowledge we’ve gathered here at Samford, and it’s time to truly make a difference.”

public health student receives hoodMohan suggested that while the graduation ceremony was a great accomplishment, it was not the end goal in itself. “The degree you’ll soon hold in between your two hands is not just a piece of paper, it’s a space for you to step into the calling and the purpose God has for your life. It’s an opportunity to truly make a difference in your chosen field,” she said. 

Taylor Ingram, a Doctor of Nursing Practice family nurse practitioner graduate of Ida Moffett School of Nursing, seconded these sentiments as she shared that although the day was one they might never forget, she hoped it would not be the most memorable day of their lives. Instead, Ingram suggested that the most memorable moments would be when they utilized their academic talents to serve those around them.

“For the undergrad nursing graduates, I hope your most memorable day will be when you pass your NCLEX and put your scrubs on for the first time,” said Ingram. “For my fellow family nurse practitioner graduates, I hope our most memorable day is when we use our community resources to treat a patient without insurance, or detect cancer at its earliest stage to save a life.”

Last November, Ingram was commissioned as an officer in the officer in the United States Air Force. Now, she will utilize her education to serve as an active duty nurse practitioner.

Bailey Andrews, a Bachelor of Science health science graduate of the school of Health Professions, urged her fellow graduates to utilize God given opportunities to serve those around them. 

“We all have a unique purpose in this life and gifts that can be used to help others and serve the Lord,” said Andrews. “Think about how many lives are going to be changed for the better because of the calling many of us are about to go and live out. Our world can be changed for the better, and it starts with us.”

All three speakers shared sentiments that the journey was not always easy and sometimes unclear but that as they reflected on their time at Samford, the Lord’s intentionality was revealed and that much of their success was due to the community he provided at Samford.

health professions student celebrating

“As we go out into the ‘real world,’ let us not forget to continue to follow the Lord’s path for our lives.  We are about to live out our calling, so may we remember this privilege we have been given and use it to bless and serve others,” said Andrews. 

At this ceremony, Ida Moffett School of Nursing honored the inaugural graduates of specific degree pathways, including RN to D.N.P. Family Nurse Practitioner, B.S.N. to D.N.P Family Nurse Practitioner, B.S.N. to D.N.P Health Systems and Administration, and B.S.N. to D.N.P Health Systems and Administration: Informatics.

Additional commencement coverage: The School of Public Health honored their fifth cohort of Dietetic Interns with an awards ceremony on Dec. 12. Ida Moffett School of Nursing’s undergraduate fall class of 2019 received their pin of distinction surrounded by family and friends at the bi-annual pinning ceremony.