The AANA Welcomes You!
By Janice J. Izlar, CRNA, DNAP
On behalf of the more than 45,000 members of the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA), I would like to welcome you to the nurse anesthesia profession. As student nurse anesthetists, you have begun a journey that will culminate in the opportunity to join one of the most respected, vital professions in America.
The AANA consistently boasts a membership of more than 92 percent of nurse anesthetists in the country, including more than 5,000 student nurse anesthetists. You are an integral part of the AANA membership because you are the future of the profession. Linda Williams, CRNA, JD, past president of the AANA, coined the now familiar phrase, “Students are 10 percent of our membership, but 100 percent of our future.” Leaders of the state and national associations value your input as we shape our organization for the future. We need your help to continually revitalize the AANA membership through your boundless enthusiasm and fresh clinical and political perspectives.
As a student, your professional commitments are complex and challenging. You must be dedicated to learning both the art and science of nurse anesthesia, and delivering the safest and most effective care to the patients who entrust you with their lives. In addition, it is critical that you know and appreciate the 150 years of nurse anesthesia history. The AANA is proud of its many accomplishments and the rich future it has helped to build for the profession of nurse anesthesia.
One of our most remarkable accomplishments has been the simultaneous growth of our profession and our association. Because they are so closely linked, it is hard to imagine the success of one without the other. As a student and future CRNA, each of you has the obligation to advocate for the profession.
Furthermore, you have the opportunity to support the AANA through active participation in professional activities at the local, state and national levels. Nationally, students serve on the following AANA committees: Education, Practice, Public Relations, Health and Wellness and CRNA PAC. Moreover, there are poster presentations, publishing opportunities and mentoring programs designed for your professional growth.
On the state and local levels there are numerous ways to get involved. Volunteer to become involved with committees as a student representative in your state. Attend your state association’s educational and professional meetings. This will provide you a unique opportunity to network with other student nurse anesthetists and CRNAs.
On the national level, attend as many meetings as you can. It is my firm belief that you can learn a great deal about your professional association and make lifelong friends. Four key meetings
will occur during the next year and student nurse anesthetists are welcome at all of them:
- Fall Leadership Academy: November 16-18, 2012 in Colorado Springs, Colo.
- Assembly of School Faculty: February 19-23, 2013 in Tucson, Ariz.
- Mid-Year Assembly: April 14-17, 2013 in Washington, D.C.
- AANA Annual Meeting: August 10-13, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nev.
All of these national meetings provide you with exposure that will enrich your understanding of the amazing profession that you have chosen as your life’s career. Each meeting provides the unique opportunity for you to explore your path toward professional contributions and advocacy. They provide you with the first-hand experience of seeing the interaction between the members of our profession and those who make the decisions that shape our future.
Always remember that your academic and clinical instructors, as well as state and national leaders, are here to assist you any way we can. We have a genuine interest in you and your success because you will be determining the direction of the nurse anesthesia profession and organizational activities.
In closing, I encourage you to study diligently as you complete your educational preparation. Soon you will join the ranks of this highly regarded and esteemed profession. You are indeed on the threshold of an exciting future.
I look forward to meeting as many of you as possible this coming year.
With Warmest Regards,
Janice J. Izlar, CRNA, DNAP
AANA President 2012-2013