President's Message

Happy Thanksgiving!

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President Mary Chesney, PhD, RN, CPNP, FAAN

Happy Thanksgiving!

On behalf of NAPNAP’s Executive Board and the national office staff, I wish all of you and your loved ones a happy day of giving thanks and spending time with family and friends. 

In my President’s Message for the November/December issue of the Journal of Pediatric Health Care, I discussed how this holiday time of the year tends to bring into focus a sense of gratitude for the gifts we’ve been given, as well as the need to share our gifts with others.  In keeping with the spirit of the season, I have three questions to ask you:

  • What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?
  • What professional gifts are you willing to share?
  • Are you willing to pay it forward?

What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?

Many of us are blessed with family and good friends who bring joy to our days and purpose to our life. Professionally, I believe many of us stand on the shoulders of the great PNP and nursing leaders who came before us, who taught us, served as our preceptors and role models, or mentored us carefully during our early careers.  I owe so much to many PNP leaders and NAPNAP colleagues who have provided invaluable support and guidance throughout my career.  Who are these key people in your life?  I encourage you to take time during this season to write them a quick note or give them a call to say “Thank-you. You made an incredible difference in my life!” 

What professional gifts are you willing to share?

The healthcare system has become so complex and many of us struggle mightily to keep up with the pace of practice. Unfortunately, many PNP programs, faculty members, and students are finding it increasingly difficult to find acute and primary care PNP preceptors willing to share their gifts of knowledge, skills, and experiences with the next generation of PNPs.  The lack of available PNP preceptors has very real and startling short and long-term consequences.  Some PNP programs are closing or are downsizing, giving rise to concerns about who will be the future care providers for children with complex or chronic conditions that require the specific pediatric-focused expertise PNPs possess.

Another concern relates to the need to continually develop state and national PNP leaders to influence pediatric health care and sustain NAPNAP chapter leadership and the national executive board into the future. If you are an experienced PNP leader, are you willing to share your leadership experience and insights with an early career PNP or an emerging PNP leader who needs your mentorship and support?  Do you have just one to two hours per week or month to meet with someone who could greatly benefit from your wisdom and guidance?  Or, are you willing to throw your hat into the ring to become a NAPNAP Chapter or Executive Board volunteer?  Increasing and strengthening the PNP network to meet the country’s growing child healthcare needs hinges on the readiness of experienced PNPs like you to become clinical preceptors, mentors or Chapter and National NAPNAP volunteers.

Are you willing to pay it forward?

Many of us have been beneficiaries of scholarship money or government grants or loans that helped to defray the costs of our PNP education.  Perhaps some of you have received grant funding to conduct a research study or implement a DNP project. In each of these instances, someone “paid it forward” to help us succeed.  Are we willing to pay it forward to give someone else the chance to succeed?  Giving to the NAPNAP Foundation is a wonderful opportunity for members like you to assist tomorrow’s leaders and the next generation of PNPs. We all understand the financial challenges PNPs face when working, raising a family and going to school for an advanced degree.  We also know how difficult it can be to find funding to support research studies or DNP projects. The NAPNAP Foundation has awarded more than 200 scholarships and grants to NAPNAP members since it began in 1978. Your support is critical to helping fellow members take the next step in their educational or research pursuits. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation through the Foundation website.

NAPNAP has a long history of leaders, mentors and benefactors. The thriving continuation of that legacy into the future depends on our present ability to actively support the next generation of PNPs. In this season of thanksgiving, I ask each of you to be generous in sharing your gifts of time, experience, encouragement, leadership or treasure to advance our PNP profession.

Yours in health,

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