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Top NCU nurse graduate appeals for support for the health sector

Published:Sunday | August 12, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Horace Williams, presents the trophy for the Most Outstanding Student with the Highest GPA to Monique Blair during the Nurses Pinning Ceremony held at the NCU Gymnatorium in Mandeville, Manchester on Saturday, August 11, 2018.
A section of the nurse students during their ICN pledge and commitment to the nursing profession.

Monique Blair, the top student nurse graduate at the 2018 August Commencement Service of the Northern Caribbean University (NCU), is appealing for more individuals to enter the field of nursing. This she argues is to build up the nursing profession.

"I would like to encourage both males and females to venture in the field of nursing not only for financial reward, but to contribute to and build the nursing profession," she said.

Blair was among a group of 49 nursing students who were pinned during a pinning ceremony at the NCU Gymnatorium in Mandeville on Saturday, August 11, which is part of the university's annual commencement exercises.

She is determined that unlike many nurses today, she will stay in Jamaica and support the health sector.

"First, I want to gain experience as a registered nurse then pursue my profession in midwifery. Most of the specialty cares that require expertise are lacking, and so, I wish to devote my loyal service to the healthcare team in Jamaica."

The Nurses Association of Jamaica (NAJ), although reporting a near 50 per cent reduction in the number of nurses leaving the island for overseas jobs, is citing changes in the immigration rules of the Unites States, which delayed the approval process of some applicants, and a seeming slump in the number of nurses being requested by the United Kingdom.

However, the NAJ president has noted in a media report that the UK market had reopened, so the number of nurses leaving is expected to go up by the end of the current conference year, which would continue to pose a strain on the Jamaican health sector.

Blair earned the awards for Most Outstanding Student and Highest GPA and Most Clinically Competent Student and was gracious in her acceptance.

"Receiving these awards has reminded me of the times I thought it was impossible. It reminds me of the countless times that I could only rely on God's strength to bring me through. It also reminds me of every colleague, family member, friend, lecturers and my fiancÈ who motivated and inspired me to never give up," Blair added.