Professional Development

Leadership Development Programs

Developing leaders at all levels in academic nursing is the path to better positioning the profession to transform higher education and health. AACN hosts two professional leadership development programs. Both programs offer a face to face multi-day meeting but there content is specific to your level of leadership. Read more about both to learn which offering is right for you and your careers path.

AACN-Wharton Leadership Program

Designed for those who have more extensive experience in academic administration or those who aspire to become a more senior administrative or executive position within the nursing academic unit the AACN-Wharton Executive Leadership Program will develop and strengthen skills to work with both internal and external stakeholders, and new trends in leadership.

Applications Due: March 30, 2018
Cost of fellowship: $6,995
Program Dates: August 6-9, 2018
Program Location: Steinberg Conference Center in Philadelphia, PA


AACN also offers a free Webinar series exclusively for AACN members and nurse educators teaching in baccalaureate and higher degree programs 


Baccalaureate Education Conference

Annual forum for faculty, deans, and other academic leaders engaged in undergraduate and pre-licensure nursing education programs to explore issues of mutual interest as well as share ideas and successful strategies. The Fall Executive Development Series (EDS) and the Instructional Leadership Network (ILN) Program are offered in conjunction with this conference. The Faculty Development Conference will also be offered as a pre-conference to this event. 

Fall Executive Development Series (EDS) 

The popular Executive Development Series (EDS) is offered every fall is designed for aspiring and experienced academic leaders who want to polish their executive-level skills. Topics change each year, and offer insights into responsibilities faced by nursing education administrators in academic and student affairs and the management of financial and human resources. 

Faculty Policy Intensive
This three-day immersion program is designed for faculty of AACN member schools who are interested in actively pursuing a role in health policy.

Summer Seminar
This popular annual event allows senior faculty members and deans/directors/chairs to explore critical concerns in education in a setting away from the pressures of daily administration. Themes and topics change each year, addressing nursing higher education issues and providing executive development for aspiring, new, and experienced deans as well as others in academic leadership positions.

Leadership Networks

AACN's Leadership Networks provide information, networking, and professional development for nursing school faculty and staff. The Networks bring peer professionals together to share best practices and success stories, sharpen leadership skills, and take full advantage of AACN resources. Professionals engaged in a variety of functions within the nursing academic unit are represented among the seven networks.

The Networks will foster professional growth and development, information sharing, communication, and discussion of key issues among Nursing school faculty and staff at member institutions. Networking within these groups will be facilitated through programs, meetings and electronic communications.

Network conferences and meetings are planned around issues of common interest and typically focus on best practices and creative solutions to shared concerns. Participating members have access to a listserv, customized Web sites, and a host of AACN resources, including publications, grant funding opportunities, government affairs bulletins, and other opportunities. Members work with AACN staff to create Web content, coordinate conferences, and develop resources to assist members in their work.