Reflecting on the 2018 ANPD Convention

Deborah Jenkins, MSN, RN-BC, CCRN-K works in Nursing Education at Excela Health in Greensburg, PA.

Although it is difficult to imagine, I think that each ANPD Annual Convention exceeds the previous one, and that holds true for the one recently held in Lake Buena Vista! From the pre-convention workshops to the rousing closing session, the week was full of educational experiences and opportunities! 

Not only is the convention a treasure trove of ideas, but I found it equally beneficial in networking. In some situations, it was comforting to know that I was not the only one struggling with a problem—that the problems at my facility are universal. On the other hand, some attendees had fantastic solutions to resolve some of these issues, so I am eager to put some ideas into action! I exchanged many business cards over the course of the week and am enjoying sharing ideas with newfound friends.

Bette Case DiLeonardi kicked off the convention with a thought-provoking look backward in healthcare, but also an exploration into the future role of technology and artificial intelligence (AI) in nursing. She also suggested that we advocate for our NPD specialty, practice our “elevator speech,” and use the word “development” instead of “training” (an event) and “education” (part but not all of development). She emphasized that we need to “go forth and imagine” our future! What a great theme as we were in the most magical place on Earth!

Dr. Karen Drenkard’s “Show Me the Money” provided concrete strategies on how to showcase the benefits of the NPD department. And if you are having a down day, channel “Jessica” (search her video on YouTube to boost your spirits and motivation)! Dr. Drenkard’s bibliography lists many articles to help you incorporate these concepts into your department.

In her “Beyond Kirkpatrick” presentation, Dr. Allison Rossett explored different methods and aspects of evaluation. She highlighted Phillips’ Level 5, which looks at the cost/benefit ratio; Spitzer’s Learning Effectiveness Model; and Brinkerhoff’s Success Case Method, to name a few. She suggested using elements of each of the models in evaluating your educational development strategies. A table with potential questions and indicators provided some suggestions for evaluation of ROI, and Dr. Rossett highlighted the new ANPD ROI calculator

Rich Bluni is truly an “Inspired Nurse!” His storytelling captivated the audience and evoked emotions that ranged from elation and pride to sorrow and frustration. He had a very simple tip for radically changing your life by suggesting that at the end of the day you write down one thing you are grateful for. Maybe it is as simple as finding a good parking spot. Commit to doing this for at least three weeks. Rich has found that the more you look for positive things, the more you will find, and that there are yellow cars everywhere!

These are just a few of the compelling messages shared at the convention. If you missed a particular session, or were unable to attend, recordings of select presentations will be available soon. In addition, the vendors showcased their fantastic products, and the posters covered a wide array of topics and ideas. Already I find myself looking forward to next year’s convention which will be held from April 1 – 4, 2019 in beautiful Phoenix—mark your calendar now! Keep in mind that the convention moves to its new time period of March/April, based on feedback from the membership.

Lastly, I am honored to have been a part of the ANPD Convention Content Planning Committee for the past two years. I am amazed at all of the work that goes on behind the scenes to offer a convention of this caliber and magnitude! We have spent many hours reviewing abstracts, posters, and other documents in the planning process, but also establishing newfound friends. Committee membership provided a rare opportunity to network with our committee member colleagues and outstanding national staff! A heartfelt thank you to all!

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