The Importance of the Pinning Ceremony for Nurses

The Importance of the Pinning Ceremony for Nurses

After completing their education, students look forward to their graduation ceremony, and the mortarboard hats, gowns, and diplomas that come with it. For some students, graduation and commencement mark the end of their educational journey. For other students, there's an additional ceremony that's held to celebrate their achievements. This is the case for nurses, who have their own special pinning ceremony in addition to graduation. Let's go over the importance of the pinning ceremony for nurses and learn more about how to celebrate this special ceremony.

What's the Pinning Ceremony?

The modern pinning ceremony is loosely based on an award that was given to Florence Nightingale, who was awarded the Red Cross of St. George for her work during the Crimean War. Shortly after, the Nightingale School of Nursing at St. Thomas Hospital in London started awarding a badge with a Maltese cross to every nurse that completed their program. By 1916, the act of awarding a pin to graduating nurses was standard practice in the United States and England.

But what’s the importance of the pinning ceremony for nurses? The pinning ceremony is a symbol of the student's hard work and dedication toward their studies; it’s a special event that many people in the nursing community hold in higher regard than their school commencement. It's offered to any nursing student who completed their diploma in practical nursing, an associate degree in nursing (BSN), or Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN). While the ceremony is a great way for nurses to celebrate their achievements with family and friends, it doesn't mark the end of their educational journey. At the time of their pinning ceremony, most nurses still need to complete their National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).

What Happens During the Ceremony?

The nursing student has the option of dedicating their pin to a significant person in their life. This person will follow the graduate on stage, where they'll be handed the pin and asked to place it on the graduate. Once the pins are conferred, a faculty member will tell the students about the history of the pinning ceremony. There's a candle lighting portion of the ceremony that commemorates Florence Nightingale as the "lady with the lamp." The students receive their own candles to hold, and a main candle is lit. During the lighting ceremony, the students will recite the Nightingale Pledge or the International Council of Nurses Pledge. Afterward, the graduates, their family, and their friends will mingle. It's common for graduating students to receive gifts. Some might prefer a timeless gift that celebrates their academic achievement, such as a graduation plaque. Others might ask for things they'll need in their nursing career, like stethoscopes, scrubs, and durable shoes.

Consider getting the nursing student in your life one of Crystal Central's beautiful, crystal plaques for their pinning ceremony. We offer an array of personalized graduation gift plaques for you to choose from. Come and design one today!