Campus Life


Special to The 'Ohana

May 22, 2023
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HPU recognized 13 Master of Science in Nursing graduates at their white coat ceremony

HPU recognized 13 Master of Science in Nursing graduates at their white coat ceremony.

On May 5, 2023, a white coat ceremony was held for 13 HPU Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) graduates. The ceremony is a rite of passage in a student’s journey in a graduate program. The HPU ceremony held this spring was notable because the students overcame more adversity than is usually experienced in a university program.

HPU’s MSN students started mid-COVID when classes, classrooms/Zoom, clinical sites, and instructors were all uncertain. These men and women stepped up, and rather than complaining they became part of the solution. They showed leadership in recommending real-time solutions to problems that need to be solved now, finding new clinical sites, and being there for each other in many, many ways.

HPU faculty member Jo Wakayama, Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) Clinical Coordinator coordinated the white coat ceremony with the students. Wakayama shared that she is “so blessed to have been a part of them not only surviving but thriving and becoming stronger through this adversity. They will all be primary care providers that I would be willing to entrust with my healthcare, and I look forward to seeing the ways in which they advance the nursing profession.”

The MSN students who participated in the ceremony were Jennifer Bilan, Regina Bray, Elizabeth Gabriel, Indu Gurung, Jasmine Kaanapu, Brett Kakuda,  Jun Kauh, Venecia Lopez, Jean’ne Robertson-Leong, Stephanie Silvey, Brianna Sortland, John Verula and Christine Braddock. 

Kaanapu reflected that “during my time at HPU, I have met people who have inspired and encouraged me to pursue my doctorate degree. I will be continuing my education and pursuing my doctorate degree at HPU. I will also be starting the Na Lei Kukui Nurse Practitioner Residency Program at the Waianae Coast Comprehensive Health Center in September 2023” 

HPU Dean of the School of Nursing Edna Magpantay-Monroe, Ed.D., APRN, CMDCP, reflected that she is very proud of these graduates in the short time she has known them. “They seem to be resilient and quite adaptable,” she noted.

To learn more about the HPU School of Nursing click here.

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