professional organizations

7 professional organizations nurses can join

Nursing isn’t about luck. Excelling in this career path and offering optimal care to patients takes hard work and dedication. Beyond gaining experience through years of working or becoming a travel nurse, these medical professionals can join professional organizations that aim to develop their members’ careers. There are tons of groups made just for nurses that provide networking opportunities and expand on your knowledge of the industry and best practices. Plus, involvement looks great on a resume! Here are a few professional organizations to consider joining:

1. American Nurses Association

Any registered nurse, whether you work in travel nursing, the ER, a hospital or a doctor’s office, can join the American Nurses Association. Depending on where you live, you can participate in both the national organization and the one for your state. Your membership gives you access to numerous resources, such as discounted study modules, newsletters, journals and other publications, to stay up-to-date on trends and nursing news. You’re also able to attend ANA meetings, conferences and programs that build on your leadership skills. Overall, you can become part of a community of professionals who care about the industry, their patients and becoming better nurses.

2. Sigma Theta Tau International

With more than 135,000 active members among over 500 chapters, Sigma Theta Tau International is well on its way to celebrating nursing excellence, per its mission. Members of STTI are either undergraduates, graduate students or currently practicing nurses. These individuals have access to free online education courses, STTI events, several publications and leadership opportunities.

3. American Association for the History of Nursing

If you’re interested in learning about how nursing developed into the career path it is today, you may benefit from joining the American Association for the History of Nursing. This organization educates people on the evolution of this field and supports research on its history. As a member of AAHN, you not only get to be a part of this movement, but you’ll also gain access to numerous publications, the opportunity to receive awards and be able to attend the organization’s annual conference.

4. American Holistic Nurses Association

A key differentiator between nurses and other providers is the former’s ability to look at the whole patient, taking into account culture and interests in addition to medical history. The American Holistic Nurses Association, which is an affiliate of the American Nurses Association, aims to promote this aspect of healing. Membership in this non-profit organization is your ticket to discounted conference rates, discussion forums, opportunities to join local chapters and an online referral listing.

5. Association of Nursing Professional Development

An organization dedicated specifically to enhancing nurses’ careers, the Association of Nursing Professional Development is an excellent option for providers looking to become well-rounded professionals. ANPD members are leaders in their jobs, heading responsibilities like orientation, encouraging professional development among colleagues and competency management. By joining this community, you can participate in free webinars, subscribe to six issues of the Journal of Nursing in Professional Development and meet like-minded individuals, among other perks.

6. American Assembly for Men in Nursing

While the organization’s mission is to influence the leadership and education of men in this career, females can also join the American Assemble for Men in Nursing. A gender gap exists in this field, after all. According to U.S. Census Bureau, in 2011, only 330,000 male made up the 3.5 million nursing roles. The AAMN works to bring more men into this career path, support them in their jobs and promote research on men’s health.

7. National Federation of Nurses

A labor union dedicated to making registered nurses’ voices heard, the National Federation of Nurses takes steps to improve working conditions for those in this job role. Ultimately, this translates to better patient outcomes. The NFN is made up of the Montana, Indiana, Oregon, Ohio, and Washington state nursing associations, so members must be a part of those groups first.

If none of these sound appealing to you, consider joining one in your specialty. There are plenty of groups that cater to specific fields, such as the Emergency Nurses Association, American Association of Nurse Anesthetists, Academy of Neonatal Nursing and American Association of Neuroscience Nurses, among others. Plus, many of these professionals organizations only ask for a year of commitment at a time, so it’s easy to switch your involvement based on how your career path changes.

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