Congress Daily

Student Luncheon Honors and Encourages the Future of Nurse Anesthesia

  • Aug 12, 2019

On Monday, Aug. 12, student registered nurse anesthetists (SRNAs) from around the country gathered for one of the AANA 2019 signature events: the 2019 Student Luncheon. The event featured the announcement of the new Education Committee student representative, recognized student achievements and award winners.

Fiscal Year 2019 Student Representative to the Education Committee Caroline Killmon, BSN, RN, CCRN, greeted the assembled students and introduced guests: Mary Wojnakowski, PhD, CRNA, NBCRNA President; Laura Bonanno, DNP, CRNA, Council on Accreditation of Nurse Anesthesia Educational Programs (COA) President; Michele Ballister, DNP, CRNA, APRN, CHSE, Education Committee Chair; Garry Brydges, PhD, DNP, MBA, ACNP-BC, CRNA, FAAN, AANA President; Kate Jansky, MS, CRNA, APRN, USA, LtC(ret), AANA President-elect; Randall Moore, DNP, MBA, CRNA, AANA CEO; Charles A. Griffis, PhD, CRNA, AANA Foundation Chair; and Lorraine Jordan, PhD, CRNA, CAE, FAAN, AANA Foundation CEO and AANA Chief Advocacy Officer .

Encouragement from the President
AANA President Garry Brydges, PhD, DNP, MBA, ACNP-BC, CRNA, FAAN, was obviously impressed with the vast assemblage of nurse anesthesia's future spreading before him. He spoke about the intense market competition we are in and how it will continue for some time into the future.

With the growing attrition of CRNAs and physician anesthesiologists, due in some part to the aging/retiring Baby Boomer population, it creates a marketplace of shrinking providers and increased demand. Brydges spoke to the "power you will wield going forward" in this competitive atmosphere.

He urged the SRNAs to take advantage of the opportunity for leadership development, and to become literate in healthcare economics. "Nursing is being crowded out of the C-Suite because we don't get those skill sets in our programs," Brydges said. That's where the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists (AANA) comes in, he advised, to support you with leadership and business education at meetings such as Annual Congress.

He also encouraged SRNAs to develop relationships both within the workplace, and outside of anesthesia. In particular, with the surgeons. "Mirror what the surgeon does, they will remember your commitment to them and to the patient, and will become an ally and advocate for the nurse anesthesia profession," said Brydges.

"Relationships, relationships, relationships," he emphasized. Relationships that you will be able to cull from across the country will serve you well. Colleagues become an extended family to count on.

FY2019 Student Representative Offers Farewell
Killmon gave an emotional farewell address, thanking not only Education Committee members, but also SRNAs around the country for voicing their concerns. She credits them for being a part of positive changes that occurred during the past year, including a successful student mentoring program at the Assembly of Didactic and Clinical Educators, clarification of student and new graduate fees on AANA Connect, and articles addressing bullying and student voting rights in the AANA NewsBulletin.

She also thanked the nine students who ran for student representative. Noting that there haven’t been that many candidates for the position since 2014, she said that the large number speaks well of the commitment and dedication of future CRNAs.

AANA Foundation Chair Charles A. Griffis, PhD, CRNA, welcomed the students and encouraged them to look forward to graduation, noting that,  “There’s going to be an amazing infusion of talent into the healthcare arena,” when they enter the profession. The AANA Foundation received 1,736 competitive student scholarship applications this year, and 60 scholarships were awarded totaling $123,000.

Griffis also recognized Foundation Student Advocates by asking them to stand for a round of applause. He thanked outgoing Foundation Student Trustee Toyin Oyunga, BSN, RN, for her outstanding service during her two-year term, and introduced incoming Student Trustee William Edwards, BSN, RN.

Award Presentations
Education Committee Chair Michele Ballister, DNP, CRNA, APRN, CHSE, presented awards to the winners of the Education Committee Student Writing Contest and Student Excellence in Education.

2019 Student Writing Contest
The purpose of the Student Writing Contest is to encourage nurse anesthesia students to write for professional publication. The winner and honorable mentions are:

Winner: Kieran Shamash, BSN, RN
University of Southern California (USC) Program of Nurse Anesthesia, Department of Anesthesiology, Keck School of Medicine
Title: “Making Space for the Story”

Honorable Mention: Wasin Luckanavanich, BSN, RN
Loma Linda University School of Nursing Nurse Anesthesia Program
Title: “Preanesthesia assessments: The Importance of Patient-Centered Communication”

Honorable Mention: Kevin Crawford, BSN, RN, CCRN
University of Michigan-Flint Nurse Anesthesia Program
“Intra-Arterial Chemotherapy for Retinoblastoma and the Trigeminocardiac and Oculorespiratory Reflexes”

2019 Student Excellence Award
The Student Excellence Award recognizes student achievement and is presented each year by the AANA Education Committee to a student who demonstrates excellence in leadership, scholarship, service or a related area. This is a student who has achieved above and beyond the requirements of the nurse anesthesia program.

Winner: 1LT Jonathan Custer, BSN, CCRN, USA, EMTP
U.S. Army Graduate Program in Anesthesia Nursing

Congratulations to the New Student Representative
The luncheon concluded with the introduction of the newly elected 2020 Student Representative to the Education Committee: Adrianna Silva, BSN, RN, CCRN.

Silva is a student at Gonzaga University Nurse Anesthesia Program at Sacred Heart Medical Center in Spokane, Wash., and works at Harborview Medical Center on the Burn Intensive Care Unit and Pediatric Trauma Unit. She graduated with honors from the University of Washington School of Nursing with a minor in Global Health. She is passionate about advocating for the nurse anesthesia profession and serves on the Washington Association of Nurse Anesthetists Board of Directors as a student representative.

She was selected as the 2019 Idaho Association of Nurse Anesthetists Rose Featherston Scholarship recipient and attended the AANA Mid-Year Assembly to continue supporting initiatives that protect and promote the advancement of nurse anesthesia.