There was a surprise graduation ceremony for nursing students at St. Joseph's in Syracuse.

Some friendly faces greeted graduates outside the hospital Thursday playing Pomp and Circumstance and cheering for more than 70 students. Their formal graduation ceremony was canceled because of the coronavirus.

The students say being recognized is inspiring.

"It's awesome,” said St. Joseph’s College of Nursing student Sage Ballinger. “I really wanted to have a graduation but this has exceeded any expectations of a graduation. This is so meaningful to me and I'm so happy that we could have this."

"I was super surprised to see my family, and like Sage had said, we're not able to have a graduation like we expected and this definitely exceeded my expectations,” said student Martina Hughes. “I'm so emotional right now because we all worked so hard and we had such a great two years and this tops it off."

The students have to take their board exams over the summer, and if they pass they'll officially be Registered Nurses.