Twenty six students from the Clovis Adult Education vocational nursing program are ready to take the next step in their journey. After an 18-month program, the students officially received their nursing degrees on Saturday, Sept. 8 at the Clovis Unified School District Performing Arts Center.
The students had to overcome a rigorous program to reach their goal. For students like
Shawndisha Germany-Molina, it was not only about dealing with the challenges in the classroom, but also about overcoming life’s challenges.
Germany-Molina stayed focused on the program despite the death of her little daughter.
“It means a lot for me to be standing here because I lost my daughter in August,” Germany-Molina said. “That was in the middle of the program and I continued on because I wanted to be a doctor and a nurse. I continued on and she’s in heaven.”
Germany-Molina said she relied on a lot of support from her family and colleagues.
“I had a lot of support from the school and from students, as far as emails and calling,” she said. “They were supportive through the whole situation.”
Germany-Molina added that the last 18 months have helped her grow in many ways.
I’m gonna start working as a nurse and possibly go for my RN.
“There’s a lot of growth, a lot of knowledge that I gained from the program, so I’m ready,” she said.
Jamie Lynn Rodriguez was another one of the students who overcame obstacles and graduated on Saturday.
“It’s a lot of hard work and a lot of time away from my family,” Rodriguez said. “It just feels great that they always supported me no matter what I needed.”
Rodriguez especially relied on support after the death of her father.
“The teachers made themselves available to me, especially when my dad was actively dying,” Rodriguez said. “When he passed, they were constantly contacting me, reaching out to me, texting, emailing to find out how I was doing.”
Rodriguez adds that she had to be selfish to overcome tragedy and stayed focused on school.
“You have to learn how to be selfish,” she said. “It doesn’t come easy, but everything you want needs to become a priority for you, right now. It’s not gonna be forever, but as long as you have a good support team and they understand that you’re gonna be demanding, they can help you.”
The 18-month program currently has 125 students enrolled with graduations taking place twice a year. The program is No. 3 out of the state’s vocational nursing programs based on first time passage of the nursing exam, with 97 percent of the graduates immediately finding jobs.
“These students are the most courageous students I ever had,” Vocational Nursing instructor Chun Hee McMahon said. “They chose to be a nurse and they went through the most rigorous program in the Central Valley. They all succeed and I’m proud of them.”