At the University of Holy Cross, 55 sophomore nursing students recently received their white coats and had their hands blessed by Sister Rochelle Perrier, of the Marianites of Holy Cross.

The White Coat Commissioning Ceremony honors the “commitment of incoming nursing students to provide compassionate care” throughout their nursing careers, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

The husband of one of the sophomores, Kellie Briggs, traveled from his active-duty site in Hawaii to celebrate the ceremony with her.

Patricia M. Prechter, chairwoman of the UHC department of nursing, reminded the students that they will be able to make a difference in many patients’ lives, and they will be able to share their faith through the care they provide.