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Graduation: A Hospital Celebrates

Ten women dressed casually pose beside a motor vehicle on a sunny day. There are trees in the background.

Class of 1926 at “Inverdream” on Lake Simcoe.

The day before graduation, our mothers invaded Burton Hall lounge for a tea sponsored by the Board of Directors of the Hospital. There was such ado about wearing hats and new dresses. Of course, almost everyone did anyway. How proudly we introduced our moms to the people we had worked with for three years.

Student nurse, Class of 1964

Eight women pose for a photo. They are dressed up, wearing long skirts, blouses, high heels, and hats. Flowers are pinned to their breasts.

Mother-daughter graduation tea.

From the corsages made by hospital volunteers to dinners hosted by its Alumnae Association, the entire hospital was involved with graduation.

The days leading up to the graduation ceremony were marked with a variety of social events. Graduates were treated to father-daughter dances, mother-daughter teas, picnics and luncheons. Some classes received outings to board members’ estates and trips to doctors’ cottages.


Scholarships for the students were donated by the hospital board, doctors and nurses. Awards were presented at the graduation ceremony. The highlight of the early ceremonies was the announcement of the winner of the coveted R.B. Hamilton Pin. A pearl-encrusted gold pin, awarded to a graduate in recognition of her “neatness, cheerfulness and kindness to patients.”

Small golden pin.

Hamilton Pin.


Listen to Charlotte, Class of 1969, talk about her memories of graduation from the Women’s College Hospital School of Nursing.

Audio clip with transcript: Charlotte talks about a graduation treat.