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UMFK nursing students honored at pinning ceremonies

May 22, 2019

UMFK nurse pinning ceremony group photo students and facutly
UMFK’s Nurse Pinning Group photo: (row 1, l to r): Diane Griffin; Cheryl Roberts; Dr. Erin Soucy; Dr. Tanya Sleeper; Larry Nadeau; Sandy Pelletier; and Dr. Jenny Radsma. (row 2, l to r): Benjamin Costello, Melana Marquis, Sara Gilson, Jessica Donovan, Jasmine McDonald, Charlotte Grass, Shelley Milliard, Danette Tekelenburg, Daniel Agborkey. (row 3, l to r): Jody Goodwin, Constance Anderson, Rebecca Michaud, Sara Bickford, Camryn Smith, Taylor deMontigny, Katelin Voisine, Tiffani Goyette. (row 4, l to r): Cecilia Efuetlacha, Alexandra Lynch, Megan Wardwell, Shayla Pontbriand, Hannah Streinz, Kendra Coffin, Rebecca Brown, Emmanuella Anyika  (row 5, l to r):  Victorine Omes, Felisha Bouchard, Krystal Kingsbury, Nicholas Clark, Liane Norsworthy, Cassidy O’Leary, Keianna Sirois.

On Friday, May 10, 2019, one hundred thirty-four University of Maine at Fort Kent nursing students graduated from the program, with thirty-six of them attending the 35th annual UMFK Nurse Pinning Ceremony at the Fox Auditorium on the UMFK campus.

The following BSN students received their nursing pins:  Daniel Agborkey (Worchester, MA); Constance Anderson (Caribou, ME); Emmanuella Anyika (Bangor, ME); Sara Bickford (Milford, ME); Felisha Bouchard (Van Buren); Rebecca Brown (Bowdoin, ME); Jeanne Butler (Topsfield, MA); Nicholas Clark (Easton, ME); Kendra Coffin (Stockholm, ME); Benjamin Costello (Brewer, ME); Taylor deMontigny (Frenchville); Jessica Donovan (Augusta, ME); Celcilia Efuetlacha (Coppell, TX); Sara Gilson (Presque Isle); Jody Goodwin (China Village, ME); Tiffani Goyette (St. David) ; Charlotte Grass (Bridgewater, ME); Jamie Guerrette (Milford, ME); Samantha Jackson (Junction City, OR); Krystal Kingsbury (Presque Isle, ME); Alexandra Lynch (Brunswick, ME); Melana Marquis (Madawaska); Jasmine McDonald (Brooksville, ME); Rebecca Michaud (Fort Kent); Shelley Milliard (Fort Fairfield); Liane Norsworthy (Fort Fairfield, ME); Cassidy O’Leary (Ashland, ME); Victorine Omes (Haverhill, MA); Shayla Pointbriand (Lewiston, ME); Kimoya Samuels (St. Elizabeth, Jamaica); Keianna Sirois (Fort Kent); Camryn Smith (Fort Kent); Hannah Streinz (Hersey, ME); Danette Tekelenburg (Sanford, ME); Katelin Voisine (Fort Kent); and Megan Wardwell (Fort Kent).

BSN students in absentia were: Rachael Baillargeon (Auburn, ME); Amy Beckett (Thompson, ME); Duane Belanger (Fort Kent); Michelle Benner (South Portland, ME); Alice Berry (Wayne, ME); Dora Brown (Bangor, ME); Eliza Burke (Augusta, ME); Jonathan Buza (Littleton, ME); Nicholas Cannon (Dover Foxcroft, ME); Alexandra Cardenas (Fontana, CA); Samantha Carlow (Easton, ME); Frances Caron (North Anson, ME); Markie Casagrande (Bridgton, ME); Brandy Colson (Thomaston, ME); John Countryman (Qweensbury, NY); Tara Cunningham (Planifield, NH); Jessie Daley (Sullivan, ME); Stephanie Dame (Bangor, ME); Trudy Delong (Millinocket, ME); Caitlyn Durant (Williamsburg, Township); Courtney Elliot (Cumming, GA): Amie Fagan (Hudson, ME); Mackenzie Farrell (Dedham, MA); Sara Felmly (Yarmouth, ME); Emily Fitzpatrick (Wallagrass); Andrew Fletcher (Murrieta, CA); Angela Frechette (Fairfield, ME);  Kasey Freston (Fort Kent); Jihaan Garrett (Brunswick, ME); Bobbie-Jo Grant (Sidney, ME); Kacey Hammond (Westfield, ME); Victoria Hanson (Linneus, ME); Danielle Hitchcock (Caribou, ME); Elise Hodgetts (West Cumberland, ME); Caleb Hollatz (Livermore Falls, ME); Sahlini Jetley (Huntington Beach, CA); Carrie Kennedy (Windham, ME); Kristen Kingsbury (Presque Isle, ME); Arianne Kryskow (Fort Kent); Olga Lambruschini (Ridgeway, Ontario, Canada); Crystal Landry (Lincoln, ME); Tasha Lary (Harmony, ME); Stephanie Lavigne (Trescott Township, ME); Courtney Lavoie (Frenchville); Danielle Libby (Norridgewock, ME); Brooke Lilley (Oakfield, ME); Vanessa Lopez Garcia ( Porterville, CA); Sarah Locke (San Jos, CA); Njukam Loveline  (Arlington, TX); Jessica Lowry (Mapleton, ME); Lorraine Lugdon (Dedham, ME); Siobhan Mantell (York, ME); Elisa Martin (South Portland, ME); Heather Mathews (Kennebunk, ME); Ami Maxwell (St. John Plantation); Grace McKellar (Oxford, Nova Scotia, Canada); Lisa McLellan (Caribou, ME);  Felicia Mensah (Laurel, MD); Kristen Nash (Caribou, ME);  Benedine Ndukwe (Brooklyn, NY);     Aaron Padula (Gorham, ME); Michael Pakulski (Norridgewock, ME); JaNeal Peck (Madison, ME); Jennifer Pierce (Windham, ME); Kathleen Pike (Orono, ME); Nicole Pinette (Eagle Lake); Anita Plog (Strong, ME); Dahna Plourde (Caribou, ME); Dawn Plourde (Carmel, ME); Stephanie Pooler (Carmel, ME); Carrie Preble (Palmyra, ME); Elise Presby (Auburn, ME); Barbara Quarmyne (Caribou, ME); Kaylen Randall (Yarmouth, ME); Nicolas Rivera (Bangor, ME); Haley Rouuseau (Brunswick, ME); Courtney Ruest (Presque Isle, ME); Laurie Shackett (Perham, ME) Lynn Shaw (Kenduskeag, ME) ; Lynne Signore (Springvale, ME); Brooke Snide (Kenduskeag, ME); Jamie Spencer (Clinton, ME); Kaloua Stanhope (Perry, ME); Rebecca Sucy (Rome, ME); Emily Sweatt (Westbrook, ME); Jessica Taylor (Glenburn, ME); Jennifer Tompkins (Mapleton, ME); Kapricemari Tompkins (Woodville, ME); Tedd Walther (Hampden, ME); Mary Watson (Winterville) ; Kathryn Webber (Old Town, ME); Erika Wentworth (Levant, ME); Karen White (Albany Township, ME); Kim White (Presque Isle, ME); Nicole Williams (Westbrook, ME); and Hope Wilson (Carrabassett Valley, ME).

Faculty, staff, and students, along with family members and friends of the graduates gathered to honor the recipients of the Bachelor of Science degree in nursing. University President Dr. John N. Short welcomed attendees and extended congratulations to the students.

The theme for this year’s pinning ceremony was "4 Million Reasons to Celebrate."

The keynote speaker for the pinning ceremony was Tyler Stoliker, a 2011 UMFK graduate and a nurse practitioner at Northern Maine Medical Center. 

To begin the Nurse Pinning Ceremony, Cheryl Roberts, instructor of nursing, thanked the following institutions for supporting the graduates during their clinical courses, as well as offering them a setting in which to complete their preceptorships in Maine: Aroostook House of Comford, Presque Isle; Cary Medical Center, Caribou; Central Maine Medical Center, Lewiston; Down East Community Hospital, Machias; Houlton Regional Hospital, Houlton; Lincoln Health, Damarscotta; Maine General Medical Center, Augusta; Maine Medical Center, Portland;  Mayo Regional Hospital, Dover-Foxcroft; Mid-Coast Regional Hospital, Brunswick; Northern Light Acadia Hospital, Bangor; Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center, Bangor; Northern Light Inland Hospital, Waterville; Northern Light Mercy Hospital, Portland; Norther Light AG Gould Hospital, Presque Isle; Northern Maine Medical Center (NMMC), Fort Kent; Pen Bay Medical Hospital, Rockport; Redington-Fairview General Hospital, Skowhegan; Rumford Hospital, Rumford; Spring Harbor Hospital, Portland; St. Joseph Hospital, Bangor; St. Mary’s Hospital, Lewiston; and Waldo County General Hospital, Belfast. Out of state preceptorships: Mercy Medical Center, Des Moines, IA; Concord Hospital, Concord, NH; Dartmouth, Lebanon, NH; The Eliot, Manchester, NH’ The Miriam, Providence, RI; Charleston Oncology, SC; and University of Wisconsin Medical Center, Madison, WI.

Since the UMFK Nursing Division relies so heavily on the hospitals in the region, NMMC; Cary Medical Center; and Northern Light AR Gould Hospital were presented a plaque, which will be displayed on the wall of their institution. Roberts also asked the audience for a round of applause for the many professional nurses who committed themselves to being preceptors for the UMFK senior students and helping them become the best nurses they can be and making a difference in the students’ lives.

During the ceremony, Duane J. Belanger was honored with the Student Nurse Citizenship Award. The award honors the diligence, manners, responsibility, conscientiousness, and thoughtful involvement characteristic of an exemplary citizen.

Belanger served as president of a newly formed student-lead organization, Partners for International Relief.  He developed and nurtured partnerships with community organizations, businesses, facilities, and community leaders in support of annual medical relief missions.  Belanger was one of four Maine community-committed college students to receive the Newman Civic Fellowship, an award encouraging and promoting civic engagement in higher education awarded by Campus Compact. He currently is enrolled at graduate studies at Creighton University with a goal to complete a degree in Doctor of Nursing Practice.  

UMFK Professor of Nursing Dr. Rachel Albert presented Belanger with the award.

The Division of Nursing also honors an alumna or alumnus during the pinning ceremony. The Outstanding Nursing Alumni Award is bestowed upon a nursing graduate of the UMFK Bachelor of Science in Nursing program, who displays accomplishment in the nursing profession, as well as a commitment to his/her community through volunteer service  and humanitarian efforts. This year, the award was presented to UMFK alumnus Tyler Stoliker.  

After UMFK, Stoliker graduated from St. Joseph’s College with a Master of Science in Family Nurse Practitioner. He began his career at NMMC in the emergency department, to working as a service coordinator for medical practices. 

Tyler Stoliker is a Family Nurse Practitioner at Northern Maine Medical Center, he focuses on Internal Medicine and enjoys working with patients who have complex medical histories and co-morbidities. Stoliker also works part-time as the nocturnist. In this capacity, Stoliker looks after the needs of patients already in the hospital and he admits anyone who comes in through the night.

He serves on numerous committees at NMMC, including serving as the nurse practitioner member of the medical staff. He is part of committees that focus on electronic health records, retention of staff, as well as opioid stewardship.

Stoliker is a lifelong learner and continues his education through a variety of programs. He is certified as a Surgical First Assistant and attended a Physician Executive Leadership Institute presented by Harvard University. He also helps facilitate and teaches Diabetes Prevention courses in the community. 

Aside from how our community benefits with Stoliker wearing these many hats at NMMC, Stoliker also volunteers his time as a Ski Patrol at Lonesome Pine Trails. Additionally, he also serves as the medical staff person for the statewide Catholic Youth Ministry.  He is a director on the UMFK Alumni Association Board.

UMFK Professor of Nursing Dr. Jenny Radsma presented the award to Stoliker.

Additionally, the Division of Nursing annually recognizes individuals of the community who  demonstrates a commitment to health care, nursing, and nursing education.  Heather Pelletier was honored with the Community Leader Award.

Pelletier has made substantive contributions to health care and nursing in the St. John Valley which is truly exemplified by her level of commitment and dedication to increase access to quality health care services in rural Maine.  She lends her health care knowledge and expertise to advocate for and advance programs in nursing and health care. 

Heather Pelletier graduated with an associate of science degree in medical administrative assistant at Casco Bay College and attended Husson College with a bachelor of science degree in accounting and an associate of science degree in business. She began her health care career working in the finance department at NMMC, where she remained for nearly ten years.

In 2010, she joined Fish River Rural Health as their chief financial officer and assistant director. In 2012, she became the chief executive officer, a position she still holds today.      

As a result of Pelletier’s leadership, Fish River Rural Health has grown tremendously over the last seven years; more than doubling their staff and quadrupling their operating budget. Additionally, quality of care at Fish River Rural Health continually ranks at the top among Federally Qualified Health Centers.

Pelletier is involved at the community level serving on a number of boards and committees at the local, state, and federal levels. For example, she serves in the Maine Primary Care Association, the National Network for Oral Health Access, and the National Association of Community Health Centers, where she participated in the New CEO Institute Graduate & Mentor Program and served as a National Conference Speaker. 

She is currently a member of the CEO Competencies National Advisory Group for the National Association of Community Health Centers. She also chairs the Community Care Partnership of Maine ACO Board, and UMFK Board of Visitors.

Dr. Tanya Sleeper, associate professor of nursing, presented the award to Heather Pelletier.

The address to the senior class was delivered by Rebecca Michaud, UMFK senior class president. 

Sandy Pelletier, instructor of nursing, brought the ceremony to a close.

The UMFK Nursing Division faculty and staff are Dr. Erin Soucy, Dr. Rachel E. Albert, Diane Griffin, Eleanor Hess, Larry Nadeau, Sandy Pelletier, Fran Picard, Denise Potvin, Dr. Jenny Radsma, Cheryl Roberts, Dr. Tanya Sleeper, and Stacy Thibodeau.

UMA PINE Program Candidates for Degree group photo
PINE Bachelor of Science in Nursing - Candidates for Degree group photo taken at the University of Maine at Augusta.

In addition to UMFK’s nurse pinning ceremony, thirty-Five UMFK nursing students who were enrolled in the Partners in Nursing Education Program received their nursing pins at a ceremony that was held on May 9th at the Jewett Hall Auditorium on the University of Maine at Augusta campus.

The following nursing students received their nursing pins: Carla Ahearn (Pittston, ME); Sarah Basham (South China, ME); Sandra Bizier (Bangor, ME); Jessica Blake (Farmingdale, ME); Virginia Campbell (Whitefield, ME); Chad Ceccarini (Brunswick, ME); Courtney Cook (Augusta, ME);  Danielle Davis (Bangor, ME); Becca Day (Belgrade, ME); Eleanor Delcourt (South Berwick, ME); Simon Elks (Rumford, ME); Kylee Emerson (Addison, ME); Caitlin Hayward (Brunswick, ME); Colleen Herlihy (Swanville, ME); Lisa Hubert (Old Orchard Beach, ME);; Duncan Kithinji (Belfast, ME);  Ashley (Smart) Martin (Vienna, ME); Quincie McCluskey (Hermon, ME); Rebecca Melanson (Topsham, ME); Elena Nechepurenko (Lincolnville, ME); Brittany Pelletier (Limington, ME); Michaela Poor (Cushing, ME); Megan Reed (Bucksport, ME); Storme St. Valle (Waterville, ME); Alexa Silakka (Francestown, NH); Jennifer Stinson (Orono, ME); Dawn Thibeault (Arrowsic, ME); John Tooley (Camden, ME); Hue Tran (Augusta, ME); Mary Watters (Brownville, ME); Ann Weber (East Machias, ME); Samantha Wenzel (Auburn, ME); Markus White (Orono, ME); Ryan-Marie Willette (Waterville, ME).

UMA’s Academic Coordinator, Terry Colby, welcomed attendees and extended congratulations.  UMFK Dean of Undergraduate Nursing, Dr. Erin Soucy, addressed the students, faculty, and guests.

The keynote speaker was Lisa Harvey-McPherson, RN, MBA, MPPM, vice president of government relations at Northern Light Health Eastern Maine Health Systems. 

Harvey-McPherson represents Northern Light Health, MeNAC and OMNE at the Maine Legislature and in Congress by working closely with Maine’s Congressional delegation.  She is co-chair of Maine’s Nursing Action Coalition and leads Maine’s nursing workforce data project and collaborative work with Maine’s academic and clinical leaders to increase the number of new license eligible nurse graduates. 

She has served as board chair of the Home Care & Hospice Alliance of Maine and the Maine Hospice Council. Harvey-McPherson served for the National Association for Home Care & Hospice. She has been recognized as Maine’s nursing leader of the year by OMNE Nursing Leaders of Maine; Advocate of the year by the Home Care & Hospice Alliance; and received the American Organization of Nurse Executive national advocacy award.

Harvey-McPherson is an active member of the American Hospital Association Government Relations Officers Network and the AHA Health Systems Strategy Group.  

Her legislative work was published nationally in 2008 in Nursing Outlook, “Maine’s Nursing Workforce Legislation – Lessons from a Rural State.”

Dr. Erin Soucy presented the Nurse Alumni Award to UMFK alumnus Carlton Spotswood for his noteworthy leadership and service to the profession of nursing.  Dr. Soucy said, “CJ presents information to our students each year and is always prepared to answer questions and help students overcome their uncertainties. Additionally, he works with our students as a clinical instructor. To date, he has educated over 100 nursing students. His colleagues remark that his gentle nature, coupled with his high regard for all persons, allows him to excel in clinical areas. Patients are assured by his clinical expertise, commitment to patient care, calm approach, and his competence and compassion.”

Lisa Harvey-McPherson was honored with the Community Leader Award for her dedicated leadership and support to the profession of nursing in the state of Maine. According to Colby, “Lisa demonstrates true leadership by staying involved in many activities to ensure that nurses are represented well through legislation activities both within Maine and nationally.”

The address to the senior class was delivered by Chad Ceccarini. Colby provided closing remarks.