ANPD Formalizes "New" Role in Professional Development

Do you have a person who serves as the "glue" to keep your professional development department functioning? Do you have someone you rely on to provide support and help in carrying out your role as an NPD practitioner? Many of us who work in the field of NPD owe much of our success to those who support us in our roles. ANPD acknowledges the importance of this support and is excited to announce formalization of a new role, the Professional Development Associate. This role is defined as "an individual who contributes to the overall functioning of a continuing education/professional development department in a substantive, measurable way" (definition adapted from previous term "key personnel" ANCC Primary Accreditation Manual, 2013).

Working in collaboration with the Montana Nurses Association, ANPD is developing resource materials for orientation, education, and support for individuals in the Professional Development Associate role. These individuals are eligible for associate membership in ANPD. The distinction of the role as an "associate" is a critical one. Individuals in this role are colleagues working in partnership with NPD practitioners and others in supporting professional development of nurses and other healthcare providers. They are not "assistants". They are key players on our teams, helping to ensure successful management of professional development activities and departments.

Several activities in early 2018 will serve as foundational resources as the new role is launched. The ANPD/Lippincott webinar on January 10th highlights this new ANPD initiative, explains the value of the Professional Development Associate, and outlines upcoming opportunities to support individuals in this role. Beginning in late January, a series of eight webinars will be offered to one cohort of Professional Development Associates. Topics include introduction to the role and professionalism, communication, activity development, planning and coordinating activities, content integrity, adhering to accreditation and/or regulatory requirements, assisting with managing and administering a Continuing Education/Professional Development department, and adapting to various practice environments.

Content for the modules reflects the Nursing Professional Development: Scope and Standards of Practice (2016) and the Alliance for Continuing Education in the Health Profession's National Learning Competencies (2014). A pre-convention workshop is planned for Professional Development Associates as part of the ANPD convention in July, 2018, and Professional Development Associates are encouraged to attend and participate in relevant sessions during the convention.

The ANPD/MNA team working on this project includes Pam Dickerson, PhD, RN-BC, FAAN; Kathy Schaefer, BA; Caroline Baughman, BS; Chris Wilson, MSN, RN-BC; Jillian Russell, MSN, RN-BC; and Tina Spagnola, MSN, RN-BC, NE-BC. The team's work is supported by Mary Harper, PhD, RN-BC, ANPD Director of Professional Development.

To establish baseline data about key roles and functions of individuals who currently serve in support positions in education departments, your participation in a brief survey is requested. Please click the link here to provide your input. Registration for the Professional Development Associate webinar series will open soon. We hope you consider enrolling your Professional Development Associates in this inaugural event.

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