Wednesday, July 15, 2020
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Nursing School Surprises Hospitalized Student with Emotional Graduation Ceremony

After a car crash shattered Brenna Jones’s legs and she had to be airlifted to a local hospital for treatment, the nursing student thought she’d have to miss graduation. But her classmates and teachers at Tennessee College of Applied Technology wouldn’t let that happen.

Instead, they surprised Jones, who hails from Johnson City, Tennessee, by holding the nurse’s pinning ceremony in her hospital room. An emotional video from local outlet WJHL published earlier this week shows one teacher, Meredith Pardee, naming Jones the “first graduate of the 2019 LPN program.” In response, Jones—totally beside herself with excitement—squeals, “What?! No way!” Pardee goes on to tell her, “What I can’t teach is caring. That is born, not learned, and you were born to be a nurse.”

Then, Jones’s mother, Tawnya Murwyn, also a nurse, places her daughter’s pin on her pink pajamas. “I love you guys,” Jones says, crying, to the room packed with people, including Jones’s young daughter. “All my family, all my friends, and the people that helped me with the wreck, thank you,” Jones concludes.

TONIGHT AT 11: A special surprise for Brenna Jones. She is a TCAT Nursing student who was badly injured on April 4th…

Posted by Justin Soto WJHL on Monday, April 15, 2019

In her April 4th crash on April 4, Jones sustained several serious injuries. She’s still being treated at Johnson City Medical Center and recovering well, Murwyn says. “Her color is returning to her cheeks, and she’s got her humor back and her smile back. And just being able to see her graduate today is the most amazing thing.”

Even though it’s been a difficult few weeks for Jones, her program director, Kathy Bullen, believes she’ll grow from it. “I just see her blossoming as a nurse,” Bullen says. “I think this whole experience will speak to her in many, many ways.”

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