Duke University School of Nursing (DUSON) held its 2011 Hooding and Recognition Ceremony on Sunday, May 15, honoring its recent graduates. One hundred sixty-three students participated in the ceremony, representing the School’s Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing, Doctor of Nursing Practice, and PhD degree programs.In her opening remarks, Dean Catherine L. Gilliss, DNSc, RN, FAAN, Helene Fuld Health Trust Professor of Nursing and Vice Chancellor for Nursing Affairs, addressed the students, saying, “You are well prepared and ready to take on the challenges of today’s health care system. You are now a Duke Nurse, a fact of which we hope you will be proud. The faculty, staff, and I congratulate you and ask only that you do your best to carry out our shared mission through nursing research, education, and practice--to enhance the quality of life for people of all cultures, economic levels, and geographic locations.”Two PhD graduates, Bomin Shim and Mark Pettis Toles, were recognized at the ceremony. They are the first individuals to complete DUSON’s new PhD program, which began in 2006.In his welcome, Peter Lange, PhD, Provost of Duke University, gave special note to DUSON’s PhD program, saying the program signifies the complete integration of DUSON into the larger University and also serves as a prime example of a program that draws on the varied resources of the University to prepare scientists for a lifetime of scholarship and cross-disciplinary research in the longitudinal aspects of health care.Pamela Mitchell, PhD, RN, FAHA, FAAN, delivered the commencement address, and Katherine Geyer, a 2011 graduate of the Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (ABSN) degree program, delivered the student address. Nursing Alumni Association President Kathy Gallagher, BSN'75, and Chancellor for Health Affairs Victor Dzau, MD, also spoke at the event.In addition to the graduates of all DUSON’s degree programs who were honored at the ceremony, two students received special recognition as recipients of the Ruby L. Wilson Excellence in Clinical Practice Award. The award is given each fall and spring to the graduating ABSN student who most clearly demonstrates outstanding skills in patient assessment, communications, nursing care interventions, and professionalism. Emma Barnett received the Fall 2010 award, and Stephanie Whitlark received the Spring 2011 award.About DUSONDuke University School of Nursing (DUSON), as a diverse community of scholars and clinicians, educates the next generation of transformational leaders in nursing, advances nursing science in issues of global import, and fosters the scholarly practice of nursing. In 2011, US News and World Report ranked Duke among the top 7 graduate schools of nursing in the nation. The School offers masters, PhD, and doctor of nursing practice degrees, as well as an accelerated bachelor of science in nursing degree to students who have previously completed an undergraduate degree. More than 700 individuals enrolled for Spring 2011 classes, the largest number of students in the School’s 80-year history.