History of the Nursing Pin
Traditionally, each school of nursing has its own distinct pin. The pin for the University of Wisconsin—Madison School of Nursing was planned in 1926, since it was to be worn by members of the first graduating class the next year, The design, submitted by a firm, was selected by a committee of five: Miss Helen Denne, director of the school, Miss Lila Fletcher, superintendent of nurses, Miss Christina Murray, instructor in the school, Dr. Robin Buerki, hospital superintendent, and Dr. Joseph Evans, of the Medical School staff.
Apparently, a contest was held for the best design. Interestingly, the design selected bears a strong resemblance to a British medal, Order of the Royal Red Cross, awarded to Miss Denne, who served as a Canadian military nurse overseas in World War I. The medal was given to the School of Nursing after Miss Denne’s death.
The School of Nursing pin consists of three parts: The Cross Pattee, representative of nursing; the Caduceus, symbolic of medicine and healing; and the seal of the University, signifying the educational setting of the School.
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