Facebook: Nursing student booted for placenta photo

Kansas City StarDecember 31, 2010 

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — A nursing student at Johnson County Community College in suburban Kansas City is stunned to find herself booted out of school just months before graduation.

Her offense: Posting on Facebook a photograph of herself posing with a human placenta in class.

Doyle Byrnes, who had expected to graduate in May and begin working as a registered nurse in the fall, is now in federal court seeking an injunction against Johnson County Community College.

The 22-year-old woman claims her future earnings potential in her chosen profession is at stake because of what she calls “a momentary lapse in judgment.”

A dean at the school calls it “a lesson hard learned.”

According to the complaint in U.S. District Court in Kansas, Byrnes was a good student and was attending a lab course off-site at Olathe Medical Center on Nov. 10 to examine a human placenta. The lab session was supervised by Johnson County Community College nursing instructor Amber Delphia.

One of the seven students in the group asked Delphia for permission to photograph the placenta so they could share their experience on Facebook.

Delphia, according to the lawsuit, merely said, “Oh, you girls,” and did not tell them not to do it or that it could result in discipline.

Four students had themselves photographed with the organ, which had no identification linking it to a particular woman. Byrnes’ photo showed her smiling broadly, wearing a lab coat and surgical gloves and leaning over the placenta in a tray.

Read the full story at KansasCity.com

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