Academic journal article Nursing and Health Care Perspectives

NLN President's Acceptance Speech

Academic journal article Nursing and Health Care Perspectives

NLN President's Acceptance Speech

Article excerpt

I accept this gavel and the responsibilities that it symbolizes on behalf of all members of the National League for Nursing and on behalf of the various constituencies that we intend to serve. I accept the gavel and responsibilities of this office with great pride in the rich legacy of our forebears for outstanding achievements -- even in the face of difficult challenges and adverse circumstances. It is a legacy of strength and courage and intelligent, imaginative, innovative responses to a maelstrom of changing social needs. It is a legacy of persistence and endurance in efforts to promote needed improvements in nursing education and in the health and quality of life for those whom we are ordained to serve, especially those who by virtue of such factor as solvency, age, race, gender, ethnicity, and sexual orientation have not had access to the health care and services that they need and deserve.

We are now challenged to build upon this legacy and chart the course for a new era in the history of the National League for Nursing.

I assure you that I am fully cognizant of the difficulties that this challenge implies, yet I am accepting the role of president with undaunted optimism for a bright and prosperous future for the National League for Nursing and, thereby, for the nursing profession as a whole, because I firmly believe that the future of the NLN and the future of the nursing profession are inextricable.

My optimism lies in the maxim that the best way to predict the future with confidence is to invent it, and I firmly believe that we have the capability within the ranks of this profession and its National League for Nursing to invent a productive and prosperous future for all sectors of the nursing community.

So, as your new president, I am determined to build upon the legacy of our forebears. I shall take on the organization's problems with the unswerving commitment to give all that I am capable of giving to turn the page, so that we can inscribe an exciting new chapter in the history of the National League for Nursing.

To share in this excitement, I am calling back those disaffected members who have wandered away from the fold; and I shall summon up the good spirits, the courage, strength, and resources of the NLN Board of Governors, the staff, and all members to bring the best capabilities in the field to bear. This will be essential to quickly turn this organization around and utilize fully its resources to enable nursing to thrive in the new health care culture of the future. We have an enormous job to do, but I have no doubt that it will be done, because I consulted my crystal ball and here's what was revealed: To construct a productive and prosperous future for nursing, we will need to reconceptualize the totality of what we do -- and we must determine why we should do it at all -- in a new global interdependent world that is far removed from that of the past. Yet that world of the past gave us the precepts that are still dictating the education, deployment, and practices of the nursing work force. Ours is now a world in which higher levels of mutuality, of diversity, and of collaboration are rapidly becoming the currency for success in any field. Therefore, our success in the venture of rethinking and reforming the entire nursing enterprise will bring the various factions closer together and end the debate over such lingering divisive issues as the requirements for entry into nursing practice and the deployment, utilization, and scope of practice for nurses according to level of educational preparation.

Along the way we will need to establish the validity of our indices for determining competence for clinical practice and for evaluating the quality of nursing education programs. During this period of passionate preoccupation with accreditation, I need not remind you that a great amount of serious and intensive work has been required to develop standards and criteria for accrediting nursing education programs. …

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