A new sculpture honoring 115 years of nursing education at Loma Linda University School of Nursing was unveiled in front of West Hall during a livestream dedication ceremony on November 5.
The “Be His Light” sculpture, set in the 1950s, depicts the eloquent blend of a nurse’s faith and clinical practice to provide compassion, hope and the promise of wholeness.
Loma Linda University Health President, Richard H. Hart, MD, DrPH, said the School of Nursing is the oldest at Loma Linda University — enrolling students just a few short months after the purchase of the Loma Linda property, in 1905.
“More than 10,000 graduates are fulfilling significant roles in hospitals and clinics all over the world,” Hart said at the ceremony. “It is nurses who set the culture of the hospital — they determine the heartbeat of each institution.”
The year 2020, recognized by the World Health Organization as the “Year of Nurse,” proved true for Loma Linda University Health as the institution celebrated two historic nursing landmarks. Both Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital and Loma Linda University Medical Center were awarded the highest honor of healthcare nursing excellence — Magnet Recognition, part of the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s (ANCC) Magnet Recognition Program.
According to Elizabeth Bossert, PhD, RN, dean of Loma Linda University School of Nursing, two bible texts served as the inspiration for the bronze sculpture. “Jesus said: ‘I am the light of the world,’ John 8:12 and ‘You are the light of the world,’ in Mathew 5:14,” she said.
“His light is represented as an oil lamp in our nursing dedication ceremony — a milestone in each nurse’s journey,” Bossert said. “As our alumni live out Loma Linda University Health’s mission to continue the teaching and healing ministry of Jesus Christ, may they share His light, illuminating the way as they care for a hurting world.”
The sculpture was donated by an anonymous School of Nursing graduate.
“Be His Light” is one of three life-size, faith-based sculpture installations on the campus of Loma Linda University Health created by sculptor Victor Issa.
“Come Unto Me,” installed in 2009, is an 11-figure sculpture garden that graces the front entrance of the Loma Linda University Medical Center — welcoming patients, visitors and staff through its depiction of a smiling Jesus Christ with an outstretched arm.
“This is the Very Place,” dedicated in 2014, sits under the trees atop the Nichol Hall hill — from which Loma Linda takes its name, Spanish for “Beautiful Hill.” The wagon sculpture commemorates the moment on June 12, 1905, when William White, Ellen G. White and John Burden decided this would be the future site of the Loma Linda Hospital.
Two additional iconic sculptures are on campus, both created by sculptor Alan Collins.
The “Good Samaritan” dedicated in 1981, is a collection of figure sculptures on the main campus mall, personifying the philosophy the Loma Linda University Medical Center “to make man whole.”
“Who Touched Me?” was unveiled in 2010 outside of Centennial Complex, depicting the story from the Gospels in which a woman is healed simply by touching the hem of Jesus’ garment.