When Deborah (Rhoades) Friedline graduated with her Associate’s Degree in nursing from Mount Aloysius in the mid-90’s, she wasn’t able to purchase the pin that all nursing students receive at the end of their studies. As a single mother of two after her husband passed away unexpectedly, she was doing her best to support her family by going back to school.

Deborah told her children, Kelly and Mike, about the pin while they were visiting her for Christmas in 2019, and immediately, they knew they had to find a way to get Deborah her pin.

Kelly reached out to Chris Koren, Director of Institutional Advancement, who, along with Dr. Nicole Custer, Dean of the School of Nursing and Health Sciences, was able to send Kelly and Mike a pin (at no cost) to gift to Deborah just in time for Mother’s Day 2020.

“We’re so happy to help Deborah unite with one of the nursing pins she would have received over 20 years ago,” Chris Koren said. “We know that the pins mean a lot to our nursing graduates, so it was lovely to be able to help an alumni receive hers in such a special way.”

Nursing pins have been a tradition at nursing schools since the 1880s. The ceremony at which the nursing graduate receives the pin symbolizes their achievement of completing the educational requirements and transition into the nursing profession. The Mount Aloysius College pin is a symbol of the mission of the College and of the Sisters of Mercy, reflecting a belief that humans rely on one another for life and well-being.

“Thank you for giving us the opportunity to present this to my mom,” Kelly said in an email. “I know she will cherish and treasure it.”