2024 ONU Social Work Pinning Ceremony

From Learning to Serving: Key Messages from the Social Work Pinning Ceremony
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Seth Hurd

July 1, 2024 Academics

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“We recognize that it is you who placed the desire to serve others in their hearts,” began Hillary Cole, chair of the Social Work and Criminal Justice Department at Olivet Nazarene University, setting a reverent tone for the 2024 Social Work Pinning Ceremony as she opened in prayer. This capstone event celebrated the hard work and dedication of the graduates who are about to embark on their professional journeys.

During her address, Cole highlighted the importance of field experience in shaping competent social workers, noting, “Before any of our students can officially call themselves social workers, they must complete a 450-hour field placement.” She emphasized how these practical experiences are crucial for applying classroom knowledge to real-world situations, thus preparing students for their future careers in social work.

The ceremony also included heartfelt testimonies from the graduates, who shared their personal journeys through the program. Ana Melchor (’24), a double major in Social Work and Criminal Justice, described the Pinning Ceremony as “one of the most profound experiences in my life”. This sentiment echoed throughout the event, as each story unfolded, revealing the transformative impact of their education on their perspectives and aspirations.

Cole concluded the ceremony, as she began it, with a prayer for divine guidance and blessings for the graduates as they transition into their roles as social workers: “Heavenly Father, we invite you to join our pinning ceremony as we celebrate these social work graduates today. We ask for your blessing as they take this next step in bringing your kingdom here on earth, protect them and keep them ever mindful of your love and presence with them.”

Watch the video of the 2024 Social Work Pinning Ceremony here.

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Seth Hurd

Seth Hurd (’06, ’08 MOL, ’12 M. Hist) is the founder of Manx Solutions. He lives in St. Louis, MO with his wife Amanda, and daughters Ava and Emery.

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