Mississippi College

MC School of Nursing Graduates Outstanding Young Professionals

May 13, 2013

Doris Nell Bynum says she was attracted to the nursing profession so she could share God’s caring spirit with others.

“I love to help people,” says Bynum, a new graduate of Mississippi College’s School of Nursing. “How can I share Christ’s love that He gave me? Nursing was an easy way to help the community.”

A 24-year-old Ellisville resident, Bynum was among 46 new graduates receiving diplomas Friday at the MC School of Nursing’s Spring 2013 commencement.

As family members and friends joined her on the Clinton campus, Doris said she’s going to prepare to take the national nursing examination in June. Meanwhile, she’s awaiting word on her application at Baptist Hospital in Jackson.

MC School of Nursing professors were simply phenomenal in assisting Bynum, who arrived at the Christian university as a graduate of South Jones High School.

“The teachers were very helpful,” Bynum said. “They looked on me like I was their daughter. They were encouraging during tough times.”

Mississippi College was the only school she applied to as a high school senior. “MC was put in my path, I came to visit, and fell in love with it,” Bynum said following ceremonies at Swor Auditorium.

School of Nursing Dean Mary Jean Padgett says the 46-member graduating class is among the biggest in recent years on the Clinton campus. “They are a quality group. They banded together and built friendships and relationships.”

Now the new graduates will venture out into a job market showing opportunities are available at metro Jackson hospitals and nursing homes as well as in rural areas around the nation. The Class of 2013 may also want to consider healthcare options as traveling nurses in the South and other regions, Padgett said.

A number of the nursing students taking part in the spring commencement came from nearby communities including Clinton, Flowood, Raymond, Jackson, Florence, Brandon and Pearl. Others were residents across state lines in Louisiana. The group of new grads included Stella Chizoba Nwaokorie, a native of Nigeria who’s presently a registered nurse in Jackson.

One of the area students receiving nursing degrees during ceremonies with President Lee Royce, Vice President Ron Howard and other leaders on stage included Lauren Collins of Pearl.

Collins “is a really sweet, capable student,” Padgett said. “She’s a solid student.”

Members of the Class of 2013 say they are relieved to be finished with the barrage of exams and the stress for now. The nursing graduates plan to relax for the rest of the weekend, but quickly continue their job search before spring turns to summer.

With Mississippi showing vast healthcare needs and many students expressing a desire to serve others, nursing became a viable career option.

“Nursing was always in the back of my mind,” said new Mississippi College graduate Paige Duracher, 23, of Mandeville, Louisiana. “It called me eventually.”

Taking classes at the School of Nursing, Paige said, was “definitely challenging. But it was all worth it.”

With her BSN degree in hand, the Louisiana native will apply for positions at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson.

Gracie Hill, 22, of Birmingham plans to use her bachelor’s degree in nursing to help her find work in the healthcare field in her native Alabama.

Hill is leaving Mississippi College well-pleased with her education. “Our teachers are very personable,” she said, as her sister, Shea Williams, offered her congratulations. “The professors cared.”

Photo: MC School of Nursing graduate Lauren Collins of Pearl receiving her diploma Friday.

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