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This month, Northwest Louisiana Technical College of Minden (Vo-Tech) is celebrating 30 years of nursing and excellence in the nursing field.

Two of the department’s founders, Jeanette Morrison and Pam Winham, were present to speak on the creation of the department, the expansion of the department through the years, and the dedicated students who have graduated with pride and gone on to pursue their life’s goal of nursing.

“I am so proud to be here,” Jeannette Morrison said when she addressed the eager nursing crowd. “I love nursing. I love the services and the program. However, we are nothing without our students. They have always taken what we gave them and rolled with the ball, making all of us (instructors) so proud.”

Morrison shared stories regarding the history of the program. She told the story about the time one young lady scored the highest in the state on her nursing exam while another young lady from the college scored an 800, the highest score possible for that same test.

“Some schools look to see geniuses come through their halls, but we never cared about that at Vo-Tech,” Morrison continued. “We were proud that our students did the absolute best at what they were required to do.”

Winham, another lady instrumental in securing the expansion and success of the program, was just as pleased as Morrison to be standing in the same place after 30 years.

“We started this program in the latter part of 1977 and I remember interviewing for the instructor’s position for the nursing department,” she said. “I didn’t hear anything back for a few months, then Mr. (Joe) Lary called me up and asked if I was still interested in the position. I told him yes and began work.”

Winham laughed as she said that the first class was basically an experiment, but that she ended up learning just as much if not more than the students with that venture.

The 42nd, 43rd and 44th classes were also present to be a part of the history and to accept well-wishes from Department Dean Charles Strong.

“We don’t do a lot of bragging at this school, but we don’t have to,” he said. “Quality speaks for itself. So many health care providers have been proud to invite one our own who have graduated from here to be a part of their family and to offer their care and service to other patients. One time at graduation it was stated that in this department, you never know when your face may be the last one a person sees; your touch may be the last a person feels and your voice might be the last a person hears. If you treat each person with that regard in mind, you will never wonder, ‘’What if?’”

Winham and Morrison expressed their humility and pride to be a part of the Vo-Tech Nursing Program family and their wishes of luck and fortune for the school.

“As Mr. Strong as many times commented, one can’t rise to low expectations. That is why we here at Votech always maintain the highest expectations possible,” Winham said.