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This June, thousands of nurse practitioners (NPs) will gather in Music City — Nashville, Tennessee — to celebrate the NP difference at the American Association of Nurse Practitioners’® (AANP’s) biggest event of the year. The theme for the 2024 AANP National Conference is “Music to Our Ears: Celebrating the Nurse Practitioner Difference,” signaling a weeklong celebration filled with continuing education (CE), exclusive keynote speakers, legislative and policy updates, hands-on workshops, lively exhibitors and unparalleled collegial networking opportunities.
Are you still unsure how the 2024 AANP National Conference can benefit you? Regardless of whether you’re a practicing NP, an NP student or advocate for the NP role, AANP’s national conference offers a variety of educational and networking opportunities you can’t miss. Read on to gain more information on this highly anticipated event and hear from fellow NPs on the benefits of the national conference experience.
When asked what she found most valuable about the national conference, Clelia Lima, DNP, APRN, FNP-C, stated, “They have so many choices, hundreds of sessions. There is no way you can come here and say, ‘Oh, I don't have anything that I'm interested in.’ You are always gonna have a problem choosing between two good things, actually.” Speaking to AANP at the 2022 AANP National Conference, Lima added, “It’s been an amazing experience coming to conferences — it’s a way to break away from your routine and take a little vacation.”
For those looking to learn and earn CE credit, you’ll find more than 330 sessions and workshops at the in-person 2024 AANP National Conference. With the sheer breadth of sessions available, NPs at every experience level and specialty can find something of interest, as Vicki Brooks, DNP, APRN, FNP, explained: “The variety of sessions that we have, the different levels, whether you're a novice or an expert, it just brings a big opportunity to just cross over at whatever you need.”
Attendees who have gone to national conferences have often returned to expand their knowledge, often citing this growth as a prime reason for their return. “I went from taking basic classes about anemia or kidney disease to now taking leadership classes, or billing and finance classes,” stated Robert Vadovic, RN, DNP, APN-C. “It morphs and changes as you develop in your career, and the exciting part about coming to these conferences is that there's so much opportunity to learn and grow.”
“It's more than a conference. I've seen so many people throughout this conference just kind of hugging each other, saying, ‘It's so good to see you,’” said Allison Mitchell, DNP, APRN, AGNP-BC, at the 2022 AANP National Conference. Following several years with no in-person meetings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, NPs like Mitchell stressed the importance of meeting and speaking with their NP colleagues. “It's really important to have community, and that community becomes more than just a profession, but they become your friends for life.” Beyond sessions, the 2024 AANP National Conference is the perfect opportunity to reconnect with influential health care professionals, experienced patient advocates, actively recruiting employers and your AANP leadership.
The sentiment of reconnecting with one’s professional community was shared by attendees of last year’s event, as well. “One of the things that you always walk away from the conference is actually a sense of belonging. When you're working, you're kind of on your own little island and you feel like, oh my God, you're just like deep in the trenches. When you get to meet and network with your colleagues, you realize we're all in the same boat,” shared Arlene Wright, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC, FNAP. “It was so refreshing to hear that everybody shared the same stories. So, you feel like you're not alone. I think that everybody wants to feel that sense of belonging.”
What else can you expect at the 2024 AANP National Conference? As per Ericka Brunson-Gillespie, DNP, RN, AGACNP-BC, attendees can expect “…opportunities for learning, opportunities for networking, opportunities to build up on my leadership, sessions where you're going through media training to help your confidence and make sure that you're speaking for the profession. And I think that the organization makes sure that legislatively we are making the changes that we need to make as a whole.”
This year, attendees can expect an inspiring speech from opening general session keynote speaker Dominique Dawes. A record-breaking, gold-medal-winning gymnast and part of the 1996 Summer Olympics “Magnificent Seven” squad, Dawes aims to inspire conference attendees by expanding on the public victories and personal challenges she has experienced — and will challenge audiences to succeed on their own terms. Attendees are also encouraged to explore the multitude of attractions and entertainment that Nashville has to offer, from world-class art and award-winning cuisine to unique shops and outdoor activities. No matter how you spend your national conference, you’re sure to be recharged and reinvigorated, as Josh Hamilton, DNP, APRN-CNP, PMHNP-BC, FAANP, attests. “Whether you can take a couple of days and get away to wherever the destination is, or you can take a couple of hours and do a few sessions online, I'm glad to see that our organization is this committed to professional development and networking. These conferences are worth their weight in gold for that reason.”
Join thousands of your fellow NPs for a week of CE sessions, lively exhibitors and professional networking. Attend the 2024 AANP National Conference in Nashville, June 25-30, to break away from your routine and enjoy all this conference and Music City have to offer.