Two people and an award
NCCCS board member Frank Johnson with Academic Achievement Award recipient Katelyn Kincer

Katelyn Kincer Awarded BCCC’s Top Honor

Clearly overwhelmed, Katelyn Kincer took the stage to accept her 2017-2018 BCCC Academic Achievement Award from NC Community College System board member Frank Johnson. The moment highlighted Kincer’s humility and authenticity during Beaufort County Community College’s Academic Awards Ceremony.

Nominations for the award are based on a grade point average of 3.5 or better and a student’s involvement on campus and in the community. Instructors within their academic divisions nominate the students. Kent Dickerson, director of nursing, was happy to nominate one of his students.

“Starting day one, she was invested in her education,” said Dickerson. “She was here early in the morning practicing before class. Afterwards, she would stay in a lab or study in a classroom. It wasn’t long before she was recognized by peers and faculty as someone who genuinely wanted to do the best she could.”

Kincer graduated on May 11 with an Associate Degree in Nursing from the college. As part of the Regionally Increasing Baccalaureate Nursing (RIBN) program, she will continue her nursing education at East Carolina University online for another year. This process allows nurses, who are increasingly required to hold bachelor’s degrees to smoothly transfer between institutions, and it expands the points of entry for Bachelor of Science in Nursing programs.

“Katelyn is amazing because not only did she excel in the nursing program, but she did it while dually enrolled in the RIBN program. This means she was taking BSN classes while doing the associate degree nursing classes,” said Dickerson.

Kincer has accepted a position at UNC REX Healthcare in Raleigh where she will be working in the Cardiac Surgery Intensive Care Unit. Kincer entered the nursing program after working in the boating industry.

“It has been my dream to become a nurse since I was a little girl,” said Kincer about her decision to return to school.

Kincer approached faculty to allow her to tutor incoming nursing students during their first semester. She leaves behind a number of students who she helped to excel in their own right.

“The rigor of nursing school changes many straight ‘A’ students from the mindset of excelling, to a mindset of ‘I hope I pass’,” said Dickerson, who sees Kincer as a quintessential nursing student. “Katelyn, however, never wavered in her tenacity and determination. She handled her challenges with poise, professionalism and a humble spirit.”

NCCCS board member Frank Johnson offered to present the award to Kincer during the ceremony, as he was a friend of her family, recounting a story where Kincer had captained a charter fishing boat on an expedition. Johnson followed Kincer’s success after she joined the nursing program. BCCC congratulates Kincer on the honor and hopes that she continues to achieve new heights.