Inaugural UCCI nursing cohort all qualify as RNs

| 29/11/2017
CNS Local Life

UCCI president Roy Bodden presents most outstanding student award to Cynthia Powell

(CNS Local Life): The Cayman Islands has, for the first time, homegrown, full-fledged nurses after every one of the inaugural UCCI School of Nursing cohort of ten students passed the Regional Examination for Nurses’ Registration (RENR). The accomplishment was the result of four years of study for the students. The RENR is the ultimate point in the journey of nursing students across the Caribbean. No student can obtain the title registered nurse (RN) nor practise as one without passing the RENR.

UCCI president Roy Bodden said of the accomplishment, in a UCCI press release: “This resounding success speaks well to the potential of the University College as the foremost tertiary level institution in these Islands.” He added, “I wish to congratulate the successful cohort and to express my sincerest appreciation to the director of the School of Nursing, Ms Terica Larmond and her faculty members and staff.”

In a letter dated 15 November, the registrar of the Nursing Council of Jamaica, Merle Rochester-Riley, congratulated Bodden, saying, “Ten students sat the RENR, and all ten were successful.”

The letter accompanied the results for each of the “Resilient Ten” as Larmond fondly refers to them. “I am elated and so proud of my ten ‘babies.’ Based on the results which we received, less than 50% of the total number of examinees passed. So to achieve 100% passing rate is a testament to work well done by the ladies who have set the bar extremely high,” she said.

Larmond added that the results also speak to the quality of the UCCI nursing programme. “This proves that we are on par with the best in the region and can expect students from other jurisdictions to consider UCCI as a top choice to study nursing,” she said.

This achievement, Larmond said, also affects the community. “Having homegrown nurses speaks volumes of the quality of care that is offered. Patients will have more nurses who are sensitive to their culture, who have a deep understanding of their needs and their beliefs,” she said.

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Reciting the nurses’ pledge

Larmond also expressed confidence that the ten will all find gainful employment as RNs. “Seven of them are currently employed by the Health Services Authority (HSA) as registered nursing assistants (RNAs) or in non-nursing roles. We have also received offers from other healthcare facilities on Island,” she said. “In addition, now that they have passed the RENR, they have the foundation to seek employment within the region and all over the world so long as they meet those countries’ standards.”

This cohort was the first to undergo the capping ceremony, which marks the achievement of transitioning into clinical experience. “It is important to note that a number of the students were working full-time and attending school full-time as well. It was a real challenge, but we worked around things to meet their needs,” Larmond said.

Bodden said of the nursing programme, which was established during his time as president: “It was one of the planks in which I told the interviewing panel that I would establish the success of my presidency. I would like to publicly commend the Board of Governors led by chairman Berna Cummins at the time, for demonstrating confidence in my vision and for supporting this and other programmes as well.”

A joint initiative among UCCI, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Health and the HSA, the nursing programme, Bodden said, is proof of the effectiveness and success of such partnerships and hopes the template is used for future programmes.

Since opening its doors in 2013, the UCCI School of Nursing has admitted five cohorts. With this most recent success, the team of three faculty and one administrative staff led by Larmond has pledged to maintain the bar set by the “Resilient Ten” and looks forward to growing its facilities and enrolment.

“We invite aspiring nurses in Cayman and the region to reach out to us,” Larmond said. “We have a programme that has been tried, tested and proven successful. Come on board and be a part of a rewarding journey.”


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Category: Education, Medical and Health

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