December 26, 2016

Michael DeMoss graduates from University of Iowa College of Nursing, December 17, 2016


Michael & Parents       Michael & Siblings

Michael and his parents, Marc and Shannon DeMoss along with his brother and sister, Zach and Hannah DeMoss, also students at Iowa.

Michael DeMoss, grandson of the late Velda DeMoss, and son of Marc and Shannon DeMoss of Rockwell City was a member of the University of Iowa  College of Nursing graduating class, earning  Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, December 17, 2016. Michael was chosen to give the College of Nursing commencement address and the narrative follows.  Michael was also selected for the student DAISY in training recipient. This is given to recognize a student for their clinical excellence and great compassion for the patients.

Grandma Velda was thrilled to receive the phone call from Michael that he had been accepted into the nurses progam at Iowa.  She was there in spirit for this specialday!

The narrative address follows:

Graduation Speech, by Michael DeMoss

President Harreld, Dean Wilson, faculty, families, and fellow graduates, good morning. My name is Michael DeMoss and I represent one of the many voices of this graduating Class of 2016.
Before I get started with the body of my speech, I would like to take time to thank some important people on behalf of myself and our class. First we would like to thank our families for your support, your love, and refreshingly good cooking when we come home for break. Second, we would like to thank our friends for being people we can confide in, people who fill our lives with joy, and people who understand why we can’t hang out because we have to study for our exam tomorrow. Third, I would like to thank all of our significant others for being patient with us, motivating us in times of doubt, and understanding why we can’t take you out to eat because we just bought $700 worth of textbooks. Lastly, I would like to thank the faculty and staff members of the College of Nursing. I’m sure at multiple points throughout the last two years you questioned whether we were going to make it. Thank you for not losing faith in us. Without your passionate investment in our education, we wouldn’t have made it to today. I would also like to take a moment to recognize two faculty members who lost their lives this year. Dr. Joann Eland and Dr. Rita Frantz were two exemplary nurses, educators, and people. There is no doubt that their legacy will be carried on by all of the students they had the opportunity to work with. I would like to take a moment of silence in their honor.
Some of you may know this about me already. When I was younger, I suffered from multiple medical conditions that eventually led me and my family to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Needless to say as a child in elementary school, I was terrified. I consistently remember feeling as if I was being mutilated and stripped of my ability to have a say in what happens to me. Each day spent in the hospital I would be poked and prodded with needles, catheters, and hands that weren’t my own. On the front line of all of this were nurses. These nurses took the brunt of my emotional outbursts and cries for help in the form of kicking, screaming, and a whole lot of name calling our psych nurses would even be impressed with. As a matter of fact, I can’t remember one nurse I actually liked. You may be questioning where I’m going with this or wondering, “Why would you ever want to be a nurse?”, but hear me out. People go into the field of nursing to have an impact on peoples’ lives, and that doesn’t always mean being the most liked person. No, if we were caught up in the idea of being liked, we would have chosen a different major and attended all of the various activities that occur in downtown Iowa City. Instead we stayed in, studying physiology or practicing our assessment skills on our roommates or pets. We gave up the traditional college experience all because of one question. Why? Everybody has a why, and your why is the driving force that controls the trajectory of your life. Every action in your life will either put you closer or further away from satisfying your why. Our why’s called us to a higher purpose, and that is why we became nurses.
I would like to leave you with three reminders as you go out to satisfy your why. The first is that you’re never going to please everyone. As you enter your first job, you’re going to be thrown into a new environment that will likely have at least a few nurses who are not kind. Don’t let their opinions and dissatisfaction change who you are. If you give in, who’s why are you satisfying; your own or theirs? Don’t be discouraged by the fact that you can’t give every patient the perfect hospital experience. There will always be the patient, like I was, who thinks you’re a bad nurse and “fires” you. If you live for people’s acceptance, you will die from their rejection.
The second is to not let doubt control your life. I think that we all could say at one point, or in my case a thousand points, we have doubted ourselves throughout nursing school. While doubt may have gotten the best of us on a few occasions, we didn’t let it stop us from reaching today. The easy route in life is to submit to doubt. It means that we don’t have to do the extra work. It means that we don’t have to take risks, but it also means we will never reach our full potential. See the difference between our dreams and our reality is a combination of hard work and discipline. Your doubt will kill far more dreams than your failure ever will.
The third and last thing I want to share is that the only limits that exist, are the ones you set for yourself. We are earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree. This education is just the first piece of learning we’ve had that will help us deliver our dreams to the world. I know what you’re thinking, “Yeah right, I’m officially done. I already have plans with my textbooks, a bonfire, and a glass of champagne tonight.” Fortunately, learning is a life-long journey. You’re going to find there are people who get an education, and stop growing, stop stretching, and stop pushing themselves. I ask that you continue to push yourselves and submerge yourselves in situations that make you uncomfortable. While I know many of you are thankful that this is an ending, I hope that you can feel invigorated in the fact that this is just the beginning! Congratulations graduates! Thank you.



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