Congratulations to the Spring Class of 2017

Dr. Cochran presenting diploma to an April 2017 grad

The thirty-first commencement ceremony of the Baptist College of Health Sciences was held on April 13 at Bellevue Baptist Church. President Betty Sue McGarvey presided over the ceremony. Dr. William Cochran, chair of the College Board of Directors, introduced the featured speaker, Mr. Jason Little, M.S.H.A., M.B.A. Mr. Little is the President and CEO of Baptist Memorial Health Care.  Dr. Cochran presented diplomas to 131 graduates at the 4:00 p.m. ceremony. This included three associate of science degree in pre-health studies; 57 baccalaureate degrees for the Bachelor of Science in Nursing and 71 diplomas in the Bachelor of Health Sciences. As of April 2017, a total of 3,173 baccalaureate degrees have been awarded by Baptist College of Health Sciences.

Dr. Loredana Haeger, provost of Baptist College, recognized special honors including graduates for magna cum laude, summa cum laude and cum laude, and those students who served in leadership roles at the College.

Dr. Cochran presented the Board of Directors award to Chase McGee. The award recognizes a graduate who has demonstrated outstanding academic performance, leadership skills, commitment to community service, commitment to Christian principles, and potential for leadership in the health care professions.

Ms. Sherita Martin, director of development for the Baptist Memorial Health Care Foundation, presided over the presentation of the remaining special awards.

The Elizabeth Farnell Achievement Award was presented to Reagan Leigh Odom. This award is named in memory of Miss Elizabeth Farnell, vice president of nursing for Baptist Memorial Hospital from 1971 to 1991. The recipient of this award has attained the highest cumulative grade point average among the nursing graduates.

The Dr. Ling H. Lee Achievement Award was presented to Kierra Shante Clay. Dr. Ling H. Lee was a longtime radiologist at Baptist Memorial Hospital and an inventor who awarded seven patents for various inventions. The recipient of this award has attained the highest cumulative grade point average among the medical radiography graduates.

The Joseph H. Powell Award was presented to Krista Tolleson Rinehart. The award honors Mr. Powell, former chief executive officer of Baptist Memorial Hospital and Baptist Memorial Health Care Corporation. Mr. Powell has provided noteworthy legacy of leadership in health care and community service. The recipient of this award has demonstrated outstanding academic performance and the potential for advanced studies in the health sciences.

The Sarah Ainsworth Award was presented to William Curry. Established by a gift from her husband, Jim, this award honors the dedication and commitment Mrs. Ainsworth made to helping her students learn and grow as health care professionals. The recipient demonstrates leadership potential, commitment to Christian values, and is ranked in the top 25% of the graduating class.

The Dr. John F. Rockett Award was presented to Stephanie Leigh Howard. This award is in memory of Dr. Rockett, an esteemed nuclear medicine physician at Baptist Memorial Hospital, who demonstrated outstanding academic performance in research methodology and a commitment to excellence in clinical practice in the field of Nuclear Medicine.


Congratulations, graduates! On behalf of Baptist College of Health Sciences and the Alumni Association, it is our pleasure to officially welcome you to our team of alumni.  You are a special part of our Baptist College family, a connection that will remain with you for the rest of your life. As you begin your journey in your career, please know that you have a tremendous amount of support surrounding you. We wish you the very best and continued success in the fulfillment of your calling.

God's Blessings

Love the Lord you God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it:  Love your neighbor as yourself.

Matthew 22:37-38