In its first ever national graduation ceremony, Netcare Education’s five campuses recently joined forces to mark the achievements of the year’s graduates in a virtual ceremony to celebrate the class of 2022.
Dr Shannon Nell, group director nursing and nursing education, commended graduates for their dedication and determination in completing their training. “Congratulations to the class of 2022 on achieving this enormous milestone, which sets the course for the promising careers that lie ahead of them. I also wish to thank our staff and management for their unwavering dedication to outstanding levels of education. Your consistent contribution to our national pool of healthcare skills is significant, and for this we applaud you.”
According to Toy Vermaak, manager: Faculty of Nursing and Ancillary Healthcare (FNAH) at Netcare Education, this is the final year for graduates of the legacy qualifications, which have been phased out over the past few years. As from 2023 these will be fully replaced by the new nursing qualification programmes already in effect, which are pitched at a higher education level.
“We have also continued to embrace the benefits of incorporating digital elements into our programmes through a blended learning approach, with all theory components being hosted virtually, all practical components being conducted in hospital and simulations being done on campus.
“Teaching on virtual platforms has furthermore opened up new avenues for post-basic students nationally from all five of Netcare Education’s FNAH campuses to take part in a number of in-service short courses on offer. These students were able to participate in the programmes online where they have access to academic experts in various specialities at a national level,” said Vermaak.
Netcare CEO Dr Richard Friedland warmly congratulated the 997 nursing students who graduated this year, including 99 candidates who also completed the management development programme. “At a time of such hardship and turmoil, here in South Africa and globally, your graduation and the potential of what you all individually and collectively can achieve in rebuilding our nation, have never been more important.”
“Our country continues to experience a high demand for qualified registered nurses, and while Netcare Education has trained more than 48 000 nurses since its inception in 1989, we remain cognisant of the ongoing need to further the development of this essential profession in order to ensure that the healthcare needs of our nation are met,” he later noted.
Living examples of excellence
Commenting on the many achievements of the Netcare Education graduates and staff, Netcare group director: human resources and transformation, Dr Nceba Ndzwayiba said that throughout the many healthcare challenges experienced in recent years, the true colours of Netcare Education have shone through.
“It is one thing to maintain a standard of excellence in healthcare education and training throughout the dramatic changes of a turbulent time, a feat which our colleagues at Netcare Education have managed to achieve. It is another thing entirely to do so without compromising on the human side of nursing as a calling – the calling to care for others with unwavering compassion,” he said.
Vermaak concluded by noting the importance of developing nursing skills in the country. “At a time when South Africa is in dire need of more nurses, we at Netcare Education remain committed to our role of ensuring that those entering the healthcare environment for the first time are able to do so equipped with the best possible knowledge and practical experience. Thank you to all of you who make this possible, and those who go on to become the nurses our nation so desperately needs. You are true blue,” she concluded.
Special awards at the 2022 graduation:
Clinical and Theoretical Excellence Awards
Gold medals were awarded to those graduands who completed the course for enrolled nurses leading to registration as a general nurse with distinction, thereby obtaining the highest overall clinical and theoretical marks for all formative and summative assessments during the two year course at their campus. They are:
- Gloria Chiemelie Ogbuagu of Netcare Unitas Hospital, who achieved an average mark of 83.5%.
- Ntuthuzelo Philasande Sangqu of Melomed Mitchells Plain Medical Centre, who achieved an average mark of 78%.
Netcare Education silver medals were awarded to the graduands who in accordance with the South African Nursing Council Regulation 683, as amended, successfully completed the course for enrolled nurses leading to registration as a general nurse and obtained the second highest overall clinical and theoretical marks for all formative and summative assessments obtained during the two years of training at their campus. They are:
- Nonduduzo Siphindile Princess Mhlanzi of Netcare Sunninghill Hospital, who achieved an average mark of 70%.
- Lerato Sarah Manyaka of Netcare Jacaranda Hospital, who achieved an average mark of 78.5%.
- Melicia Padayachee of Netcare Alberlito Hospital, who achieved an average mark of 73.5%.
- Juanita Devilin Sandt of Netcare N1 City Hospital, who achieved an average mark of 77%.
The Auxiliary Nurse Excellence Awards were awarded to graduands who in accordance with the South African Nursing Council Regulation 169, successfully completed the Higher Certificate in Nursing leading to registration as an auxiliary nurse and obtained the highest overall clinical and theoretical marks for all formative and summative assessments obtained during the one year of education and training. They were:
- Kyra Luwuan Paulsen of the Netcare Milpark Hospital, who achieved an average mark 83%.
- Lee-Ann Joseph of the UCT Private Academic Hospital, who achieved an average mark 80.4%.
Campus Manager Award
Numerous special awards were conferred during the ceremony, in acknowledgement of achievements across multiple areas of education and training. One of the most notable of these went to Tali Nathan, who was undeterred in pursuing her dream to become a nurse, which she has cherished since after matriculating in 2014.
Because she had not considered nursing as a career until after she finished school, Tali had to jump through several academic hoops to make her dream a reality but she stayed the course and now works as a registered nurse in the emergency department at Netcare Milpark Hospital. Tali received the Campus Manager Award, which is bestowed upon a student employed by Netcare or placed in a Netcare Hospital for work integrated learning who best epitomises the Netcare core values, both within the hospital and campus environments.
Lifetime Achievement Award
A particularly special acknowledgement was made to Netcare Education’s academic head, Gerda Meyer, who received a Lifetime Achievement Award for her contribution to nursing and nursing education over the past 40 years. In reflecting on Gerda’s illustrious career, Dr Nell commented on her ability to lead by example across the different spheres of nursing education.
“I first met you in the early days when you were the unit manager of the surgical intensive care unit (ICU) at what was then the Johannesburg Hospital, and a lecturer and expert in the post-basic ICU programme for Netcare Education before you became head of department and thereafter academic head at Netcare Education. Your wisdom, knowledge and care have rippled through the nursing fraternity, gifting us all with a rich legacy that will endure for many years to come. Though you may be retiring next year, you have taught us that good values never retire. We wish you countless smiles and much joy for this next chapter,” she said.
Graduation statistics by region
Netcare Education campuses are based in Johannesburg, Pretoria, KwaZulu-Natal, Cape Town and Gqeberha. In the 2022 academic year:
- 435 students graduated from Netcare Education Gauteng South West campus
- 162 students graduated from Netcare Education Gauteng North East campus
- 110 students graduated from Netcare Education Western Cape campus
- 60 students graduated from the Netcare Education Eastern Cape campus
- 131 students graduated from Netcare Education KwaZulu-Natal campus.
- 99 students complete the Netcare Management Development programme.
Notes to editor
Are you interested in a career in nursing?
If you are looking for a dynamic, exciting, and fast-paced working environment in a career where you can make a difference to people’s lives, think nursing. Nurses’ lead extraordinary lives and opportunities in nursing are unlimited. It includes a range of specialties that few professions can match and is a demanding and stimulating career that comes with exceptional rewards.
Information regarding applications for admission to Netcare Education Faculty of Nursing and Ancillary Healthcare programmes is available on www.kreducation.co.za/netcare. Selection assessments are currently taking place. Should you require additional assistance, please contact our logistical partners, the KR Education team, on 064 508 3892 or call 087 255 2250.
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