New Tulsa Nursing Graduate Ready To ‘Step Up & Serve’ Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Thursday, December 10th 2020, 9:46 pm
By: Kristen Weaver

TULSA, Okla. -

A Tulsa woman will soon be on the frontlines as a nurse after graduating from a Tulsa college.

Gabrielle Payne had her pinning ceremony Thursday night, virtually, and is eager to get going. In a time where nurses are needed more than ever, she said she’s ready to step up and serve. It was a moment Payne has been dreaming of for so many years: officially completing her nursing degree with a pinning ceremony.

"This time it's on Zoom, we won't get pinned by our dean," Payne said. "My sister will pin me because she's a nurse."

Payne got her Bachelor of Science in nursing at Langston University Tulsa along with 16 other classmates.

"Been there for two years, the hardest two years of my life thus far," she said.

Payne said it's been quite the journey, taking one semester of clinicals online, juggling a job as a bank teller, and even getting sick with COVID-19 for several weeks in the summer.

She's ready to make a difference in a time where healthcare workers are needed more than ever.

"They need more nurses, because the more nurses they have, the more they can help the community," Payne said. "So, I can't wait."

The night was even more special for Gabrielle, because she's celebrating her brother's graduation happening this weekend.

He's a single father of four who is juggling work, kids and getting his criminal justice degree.

"The world is depending on nurses right now to be on the frontlines. "To be a part of it is amazing," Payne said.

Payne said she's now applying for jobs here in Tulsa and hopes to be an ICU nurse serving on the frontlines.