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Practical Nursing Graduates Honored During Pinning Ceremony

Forty-six Practical Nursing Graduates were honored during a Pinning Ceremony, in Western Dakota Tech's new Event Center, May 12. These graduates will help fill an important need in the workforce for entry-level nurses in the healthcare environment.

The Pinning Ceremony is a traditional symbolic welcoming of Nursing Graduates into the Nursing field. Students chose who they wanted to pin them. A thank-you written by the student was aloud as they were being pinned.

Western Dakota Tech Practical Nursing Program Director Christi McArthur, BSN, RN, provided the welcome. Opening remarks were by Holly Perli, BSN, RN, of Regional Health, and Mary Beth McLellan, BSN, RN, of the Rapid City Regional Hospital Family Medicine Residency Clinic. Closing remarks were provided by Western Dakota Tech President Ann Bolman, Ed.D.

Special nursing awards were presented as follows:
  • Honors Graduate Awards (Outstanding Graduates) - Sara Garreau and Amanda Poste, both of Rapid City, S.D.
  • Most Compassionate - Brittany Mechaley, Custer, S.D.
  • Clinical Experience - Bradley VanSickle and Vicki Even, both of Sturgis, S.D., and Tammy Zook, Rapid City, S.D.
The nurses honored during the pinning ceremony were as follows:
  • *Taylar Applegate, Sturgis, S.D.
  • Kassee Beck, New Underwood, S.D.
  • Nicole Biegler, Gillette, Wyo.
  • *Kimberly Caba, Box Elder, S.D.
  • *Hunter Cartier, Sioux City, Iowa
  • *Renaemariel Cripps, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Valeria Cross, Rapid City, S.D.
  • **John "Vince" Cumella, Rapid City, S.D.  
  • *Destiny Dale, Midland, S.D.
  • Victoria Even, Sturgis, S.D.
  • Meghan Fedele, Box Elder, S.D.
  • Sara Garreau, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Angela Heinen, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Melissa Houser, Newcastle, Wyo.
  • *Alicia Huebner, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Estee  Hughes, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Jennifer Konda, Black Hawk, S.D.
  • *Kristeana Lawson, Custer, S.D.
  • *Anna Lewison-Voss, Box Elder, S.D.
  • *Vanessa Lockey, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Amanda Luther, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Brittany Mechaley, Custer, S.D.
  • *Stefanie Moak, Box Elder, S.D.
  • *Courtney Nygaard, Box Elder, S.D.
  • Nicole Obi, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Alysha O'Connell, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Brinley Olson, Whitewood, S.D.
  • Amanda Poste, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Amanda Proefrock, Belle Fourche, S.D.
  • *Cara Riker, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Brandee Robertson, Spearfish, S.D.
  • *Giselle Rosado Rivera, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Marie Sadler, Black Hawk, S.D.
  • Kate Saknikent, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Amanda Sherwood, Box Elder, S.D.
  • *Justin Shoop, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Rhamie Sixtos, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Erica Stafford, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Jessica Story, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Luis Torres Negron, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Macy Trautner, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Bradley VanSickle, Sturgis, S.D.
  • *Jessica VenOsdel, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Jessica Webster, Rapid City, S.D.
  • Hidie Wetzler, Nisland, S.D.
  • Tammy Zook, Rapid City, S.D.
  • *Jessica Zweifel, Rapid City, S.D.
*Denotes December 2016 graduates.

**To graduate at later date.

Additional photographs from the nurse pinning ceremony are available on the Western Dakota Tech Facebook page.
About Western Dakota Tech
Western Dakota Tech was established in 1968 and is the only technical college that serves the western South Dakota region. 

Western Dakota Tech offers programs in a variety of fields, including Business and Computers, Construction and Manufacturing, Energy and Environmental Technologies, Health Sciences, Legal and Public Services, and Transportation Technologies. 

More than 86 percent of Western Dakota Tech's most recent graduates are working, continuing their education, or are enlisted in the military.
Western Dakota Tech faculty, staff, and administration focus their efforts on helping students gain the skills and experiences they need to succeed. Through hands-on learning, internships, and industry partnerships, Western Dakota Tech students graduate ready to make a real and immediate contribution to their employers and to their communities.
For information about Western Dakota Tech, call (800) 544-8765 or (605) 718-2565 or send an email to Visit us on the web at

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