MCCC Nursing Program Recognizes 43 Graduates
at Pinning Ceremony


West Windsor, N.J. - A former food scientist and a former environmental engineer were among the graduates of Mercer County Community College's Nursing program this May. The 43 men and women received special recognition at a pinning ceremony at Kelsey Theatre on May 19, with a supportive audience of faculty, family and friends. The students were among 77 who earned associate degrees in Nursing this year at Mercer.

Teodora Baltaretu of Twin Rivers, the Nursing program's class valedictorian, stated simply that she wants to help others. "If I can make a difference in the lives of people who are sick by helping them, it would make me most happy," she said. A native of Galati, Romania, she arrived in the United States four years ago and had worked in health care in her country. Thanking the Mercer community in her remarks, she reiterated the importance of camaraderie. "For us to get this far, it required hard work, sacrifice, patience and commitment but we did not do it alone," she said. "We had our professors, families and friends by our side."

The Baltaretu family also celebrated the graduation of Remus, Teodora's husband, who earned a degree in Information Systems and won the "Outstanding Achievement in Information Systems" award at the college's Honors Convocation.
Nursing Program Graduates, May 2009.
MCCC Dean of Science and Health Professions Linda Martin with Nursing Program valedictorian Teodora Baltaretu.

The graduating class included many career changers, including honors graduates Victor Anabaronye, formerly a food scientist and police officer, and Kayathri Sudhakar, who earned bachelor's and master's degrees in environmental engineering prior to raising her family.

The ceremony ended with a standing ovation and cheers of joy. The students will follow their graduation by taking the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) for Registered Nurses. They also have a new option. Registered nurses can continue their education right on Mercer's Campus through Felician College of Lodi, NJ, which began its fast-track program for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree last January. Students attend classes one full day per week for 19 months.

Mercer's Nursing Program combines course work in nursing and general education with clinical experience in regional health care facilities under the supervision of college faculty. The program is accredited by the N.J. Board of Nursing and the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission.

The college also offers associate degree programs in Health Science, Medical Laboratory Technology, Physical Therapist Assistant, Radiography and Pre-Med Biology. In addition to its own Nursing program, Mercer works with Capital Health System and St. Francis Medical Center in Cooperative Nursing programs.

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