Some Bristol Community College nursing students are upset this morning after receiving an email yesterday. The email was from the Dean of Health Sciences at BCC, Lynne Brodeur, informing the nursing students that there would no longer be a traditional pinning ceremony when they earned their RN degrees.

One of the students, who asked us to change her voice so that there wouldn't be any repercussions, told us that the pinning ceremony is a key part of graduating from nursing. "It’s literally the light at the end of the tunnel for everything you work so hard for. Your blood, sweat and tears work you up to that moment."

She told us that taking away the ceremony was extremely upsetting to her and other students because it goes against long-standing traditions in the nursing field.

The caller told us that all questions about why the pinning ceremony was dropped were directed to the Dean, who would only say that the school was doing what they thought was for the best.

We spoke to BCC today. The college says that having multiple pinning ceremonies along with a commencement ceremony was causing issues with attendance at graduation. Students and family members were unable to take time off for both events and would, many times, choose only one. The school says that students will be able to receive their pins during the regular commencement exercises.

We asked if the college would consider reversing their decision after the uproar from the nursing students. A spokesperson for the college said, "The decision has been made, and the college will not reinstate the pinning."

In calls and messages to Fun 107, students expressed concern about maintaining anonymity.  There was a fear that they'd be kicked out of the program.  A school official told Fun 107, however, that while there is a code of conduct the students are expected to sign, the school would never seek to stifle student speech.

The BCC Nursing Program Handbook states that creating a negative culture is not permitted.

Gossip, rumors, slanderous and/or derogatory communication are not attributes of professionalism which is an essential nursing competency. It is expected that respectful lines of communication amongst students and faculty be used to resolve conflicts, to clarify and verify.

Violations of civility may be referred to the Vice President of Student Services for appropriate disciplinary action or may result in dismissal from the course/program .The faculty reserve the right to dismiss students based upon violation of civility since any violation is considered evidence of failed professional role competency.

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