SMU Nursing Student Recaps the AACN Student Policy Summit

Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) / Doctor of Nurse  Practitioner (DNP) student Kathleen "Kat" Hilton recently attended the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Student Policy Summit.

The AACN Student Policy Summit (SPS) was a three-day conference held in Washington, DC open to baccalaureate and graduate nursing students enrolled at an AACN member institution. Students who attended SPS were immersed in didactic program sessions focused on the federal policy process and nursing’s role in professional advocacy.

Here is Hilton's recap of the event:

"I had the opportunity to attend the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) Student Policy Summit this past March in Washington, D.C. with fellow undergraduate and graduate nursing students from across the country.  Over the course of a three-day immersion program, I interacted with policy makers, heard from leaders in nursing policy, and met with members of Congress and their staff.

Through direct advocacy for funding in nursing education and nursing research, as well as nursing practice legislation, I have greater insight into the health policy process at the Federal level.  This experience provided a chance to see first hand the value of political participation.  It is necessary for nursing to be at the forefront in leading decisions in healthcare policy, especially during this critical juncture in the implementation of Affordable Care Act.

The AACN Student Policy Summit highlighted the importance of patient advocacy through involvement in our professional organizations.  As a student, it is clear that clinical competency lays the foundation for a career in advocacy.  

Attending this conference exposed me to the impact of policy engagement in the field of nursing.  It has inspired me to strengthen my dedication to health policy and patient advocacy as I progress in my career."

Associate Professor Patricia Brennan, Hilton's capstone chair, attended the AACN Inaugural Health Policy Faculty Fellowship in 2013, another initiative of AACN.

photo: with Former Congressman Alan Wheat - a Senior Policy Advisor of Polsinelli's Public Policy practice




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