On Saturday, December 12, Concordia University Ann Arbor School of Nursing celebrated the Pinning Ceremony for the Zeta Class, the fifth cohort to graduate from CUAA's school of nursing.


The Zeta Class pinning ceremony was originally planned to be celebrated in person with a socially-distant ceremony in the Chapel of the Holy Trinity, but was shifted to a virtual format when the stay-at-home restrictions were extended earlier in the week.

Each semester, Concordia’s nursing faculty and staff nominate students from the graduating cohort who best represent the core values of the nursing program: service, excellence, compassion, and integrity. An additional award, the Nightingale Award, was created as a tribute to Florence Nightingale who embodied nursing as her life’s vocation. The recipient of this award exemplifies that same character and calling.

View all of the Zeta class award recipients.

Alexandra FerreriaThe Nightingale Award: Alexandra Ferreira (’20)

Presented by Cindy Fenske

For the sick it is important to have the best. -Florence Nightingale

Florence Nightingale is an iconic figure who is responsible for the philosophy and underpinnings of modern day nursing. Prior to her, nursing was looked down upon as unimportant and as a low status job. Through her efforts, nursing was reborn into the trusted profession we know today. The name of Florence Nightingale is often associated with integrity, nursing excellence, compassion, service, our CUAA cornerstone value. Florence Nightingale viewed nursing as her calling from God. She gave her life and passion to the care of others, no matter what the conditions. It is in her name, that we give this award to a graduate, who displays these same qualities.

The award this year goes to a graduate who demonstrated a high level of accomplishment and embodied all of the CUAA cornerstone values.  This person demonstrated impeccable integrity, as seen by their honesty, reliability, and strong work ethic.  Their work was characterized by excellence.  We could count on her to not only be well prepared, but also ready and willing to fully engage in whatever learning situation or simulation we devised. She demonstrated great compassion to her patients, fellow students and even to her simulated mannequin patients.  She showed us her servant’s heart, always ready to help with a smile and enthusiastic laugh.  She was a team player who never complained, but instead helped whenever and wherever she was needed.

One of her clinical instructors commented, “I was blessed with the opportunity to teach Ally throughout her nursing career. To watch her grow from the beginning in gerontology clinical to the end in her senior immersion experience was truly rewarding. Her dedication to learning and commitment to providing competent and compassionate patient care is truly enough to deem her deserving of this award. I am so proud of her and I cannot wait to welcome her to the field!”

The nursing team felt strongly that this person clearly represented the ideals that Florence Nightingale held so dear.  I proudly give this award to Alexandra Ferreira.  This graduate embodies what it is to be a Concordia nurse.

Previous Nightingale Awardees:

Lauren Baranski (Omega class, Spring 2020)

Hattie Thomas (Delta class, Fall 2019)

Caitlyn Freshour (Beta class, Spring 2019)

Samantha Southwell (Alpha class, Fall 2018)

Learn more about Concordia’s School of Nursing.

— Rachel (Ferry) Thoms is manager of campus communications for Concordia University Ann Arbor. She may be reached at rachel.thoms@cuaa.edu or 734-995-7403.

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