UH System board chair to speak at UHV School of Nursing second pinning ceremony

KATY - A pin placed on a lapel will mark the transition from student to advanced professional for eligible graduates at the Dec 13 University of Houston-Victoria School of Nursing Pinning Ceremony.



The second annual ceremony will begin at 1:30 p.m. at the Leonard E. Merrell Center in Katy and will feature University of Houston System Board of Regents Chairman Welcome W. Wilson Sr. as the keynote speaker. Forty-two students are invited to participate in the ceremony.


The ceremony will follow the UHV fall graduation ceremony, which begins at 11 a.m.


“Becoming a nurse isn’t just joining a profession, it’s becoming part of a calling and a way of life,” said Kathryn Tart, founding dean of the UHV School of Nursing. The pin signifies the nursing program from which a nurse graduated. Each nursing school has its own unique pin as part of a tradition that can be traced back to when Florence Nightingale presented the Maltese Cross, used by the medical caregivers of the Knights Hospitallers since the Crusades, on the lapels of her nursing school graduates in the late 1800s.


The UHV School of Nursing pin presented to the nurses in the ceremony will stay on their lapels for the rest of their professional careers to let patients know their caregivers are part of a higher order of nurses, Tart said. The pin also serves to remind the nurses of all they went through to reach that honored position in healthcare.


“Chairman Wilson has been a champion for nursing for more than 50 years. We are honored that he will speak at the second-ever pinning ceremony at UHV,” Tart said.


Wilson was appointed to the UH System Board of Regents in 2006 by Gov. Rick Perry and elected chairman for fiscal years 2008 and 2009.


He is chairman of GSL Welcome Group, LLC, a group of companies that own and lease single-tenant industrial facilities in Texas.  Since 1958, when he opened Jamaica Beach in Galveston, he has been a real estate developer of subdivisions, apartment complexes, shopping centers, industrial facilities and office buildings. 


Wilson served in the administrations of Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy and Johnson and received several awards for his efforts.  He has served as chairman of three financial institutions in Texas.


He graduated from the University of Houston in 1949 with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree.


“It will be my great pleasure to talk with these men and women about the important role they will play in solving this national nursing shortage that affects us all,” Wilson said. “I also look forward to sharing with them what an important role a college education played during my life these last 60 years and how much Texas will need more college graduates like them in the next 10 years.”


UHV presented its first pins in a milestone ceremony last December when 29 nurses received the pins, which many of them helped design.


The UHV School of Nursing offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nursing in Victoria and at the UH System at Sugar Land. Programs are designed to accommodate the schedules of working nurses.


For more information, visit, or contact student recruitment coordinator Tammy Neeley Whatley at 361-570-4297 or

The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 80 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.

Thomas Doyle 361-570-4342