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AACN News Watch Weekly Edition

Published August 31, 2022

AACN Weekly News Watch
August 31, 2022
AACN Rounds with Leadership - Cynthia McCurren and Deborah Trautman
Rounds with Leadership: 
In Memory of Donald Jonas: Nursing Advocate, Leader, and Friend
Nurses are the backbone of the American healthcare system who are essential to sustaining the nation’s health, especially in times of crisis. I believe that it is essential to support nurses and the vital role they play in our hospitals, schools, clinics, nursing homes, and on the battlefield.
-Donald Jonas, June 2020

On July 23, the academic nursing community was saddened by the news of the passing of Donald Jonas at the age of 92. As the co-founder of Jonas Philanthropies along with his wife Barbara, Mr. Jonas was a leading champion for nursing education who truly understood the strong connection between higher education and quality health care. The impact of his philanthropic work on reshaping nursing practice, education, and research will be felt for generations to come. 


AACN’s connection to Mr. Jonas and the work of the foundation spans over 10 years. Since 2012, AACN has partnered with Jonas Philanthropies to enhance the nation’s supply of doctorally prepared nurses available to serve in faculty roles and as advanced practice registered nurses. This signature collaboration, called the Jonas Nurse Scholars program, has served as one of the nation’s leading sources of support for nursing students in PhD and DNP programs. To date, the Scholars program has disbursed more than $10 million in support to nearly 1,400 doctoral students at 157 schools of nursing across all 50 states.
Weekly Digest
In the September-October 2022 issue of the Journal of Professional Nursing, Dr. Megan Lippe from the UT Health San Antonio School of Nursing and colleagues published a new article titled Updated Palliative Care Competencies for Entry-to-Practice and Advanced-Level Nursing Students: New Resources for Nursing Faculty. The authors describe how existing palliative care competency statements were adapted to ensure alignment with the Domains, Competencies, Sub-Competencies, and Concepts of the new AACN Essentials. Tools and resources available to assist faculty in adapting palliative care curriculum are profiled.

On August 19, 2022, writer Steph Weber with Medscape Medical News published an article titled Nurses of Color Finding More Financial Aid Avenues. The article examines the value of monetary incentives to reducing educational barriers to nursing careers, attracting diverse recruits into the profession, and enabling individuals from marginalized groups to pursue advanced nursing roles. The author identifies several funding sources for nurses of color and features insights from national nursing leaders, including Dr. Vernell DeWitty, AACN’s Senior Consultant for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

Graphic - Access AACN's On-Demand Webinars
2022 ANLC

AACN Updates

New Assessment Expert Working Group Formed to Support Essentials Implementation

Launch of NursingCAS 2022-2023 Application Cycle 

The Essential Update - See the latest on AACN's New Essentials
Essentials Implementation Spotlight: Western Governors University
Western Governors University (WGU) entered its 25th year of competency-based education in 2022, with a redeveloped RN-to-BSN program curriculum aligned with the new AACN Essentials. Launched on February 1, 2022, the program’s nine core nursing courses, the social-emotional learning course, and multiple general education courses were designed to meet the new competency standards and better prepare students for the everchanging role of the professional nurse caring for diverse populations. The program redesign process was completed in just under two years from charter approval to program launch and was made possible through the collaboration of instructional and assessment design teams, project managers, program development, academic leaders, and internal and external subject matter experts. As recommended in the Essentials, WGU used an academic-practice partnership model to develop course materials with input from its partners and create innovative courses that reflect integrated systems of health care. Read more...
Schools are encouraged to showcase their implementation efforts and send a brief update or video profiling their work to

2022 Diversity Leadership Institute Spotlight
AACN's Diversity Leadership Institute (DLI) is for academic nursing leaders committed to making an impact in the area of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). Each year, DLI Fellows develop and present capstone projects showcasing how they apply research, execute new strategies, and see results with their DEI initiatives. See below for featured capstone projects. Visit AACN’s webpage for more details on DEI efforts led by AACN.
Featured Capstone Projects

Elda Ramirez, PhD

Darlene Showalter, DNP
University of Alabama in Huntsville

Krista Simmons,
Saint Louis University


The Social Pulse
The All of Us Research Program aims to improve precision medicine research by building a national health information resource of one million or more U.S. participants that reflects the diversity of the country. AACN is partnering with this NIH-funded program to provide grants for nursing schools interested in advancing this initiative and accessing its Researcher Workbench, which now includes health data from more than 372,000 individuals. Registered researchers can access this data and use it to explore potential associations across a variety of factors, from genetics to geography to mental health. Visit the All of Us Research website to learn more about the Workbench, and visit the AACN website to apply for a mini-grant before September 26. 
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Before COVID-19, our nation's healthcare system already faced challenges, including shortages in the nursing workforce. Despite the pandemic stabilizing, many health systems will continue to be challenged with a worsening shortage unless there is a shift in staffing strategies. On September 22 at 3:00 pm (ET), Sigma Nursing will host a webinar focused on six hard truths and corresponding mindset shifts essential to identifying responsive, sustainable staffing solutions.
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Washington Weekly
Inside this edition of Washington Weekly:
  • AACN Submits Comments to Federal Agencies on Healthcare and Education Priorities
  • Biden-Harris Administration Announces Student Debt Relief Plan
  • Nursing Voices Nursing Votes: Countdown to the 2022 Midterm Elections

Washington Weekly


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