KILN Graduate Students at AANP Conference (L-R): Maureen Regan ’17, Loic Assobmo ’17, Kim Monestime ’17, and Rachel Lehouillier ’17

I am so grateful to have attended the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) national conference from June 21- 24, 2017 in Philadelphia, PA. The AANP national conference is the largest of all conferences for nurse practitioners and was a premier opportunity to enhance professional skills. The theme of this conference was “NPs Revolutionizing Healthcare.” The conference most definitely fulfilled the hopes of educating NPs on different strategies to revolutionize healthcare by taking action as NP leaders. Nurse practitioner’s are very valuable to the healthcare system and need to provide care to the full scope of his or her practice. I decided to attend most of the lectures having to do with Endocrinology since I will be starting my career as a Family Nurse Practitioner in August in an Endocrine office. The clinical tips on thyroid, osteoporosis and diabetes management will be as helpful as I begin my career since each session offered evidence based strategies, screening tools, and online resources. Additionally, I attended many poster sessions, which allowed me to hear from professionals from around the country talk about their research. I left the conference feeling empowered and excited to begin my work as a Nurse Practitioner in August. NP’s from around the country are able to shape his or her practice in order to meet the needs of the populations that they work with.

– Rachel Lehouillier ’17

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The opening keynote speaker was Stephen Klasko. He grounded his talk in the main theme of radically transforming healthcare. The two main points I took away were first, the idea that in order to revolutionize healthcare, we need to step back and re-evaluate who and how we are preparing to be healthcare providers. Secondly, that our healthcare system need not/should not shy away from technology and modernity, indeed, that technology can help us expand access and provide better care for everyone. I attended a few focused seminars, including one ‘no dermatophyte infections’. Mimi Secor, the speaker, was helpful especially with tips on how to do the gynecologic exam in various settings, for example, when one doesn’t have an exam table with stirrups. The session on ECG was a wonderful review and more in-depth look at the ECG. At a lecture on caring for patients who identify as LGBTQi2, I was humbled by the desire and efforts of those who were from parts of the country where inclusivity is even more of an uphill battle than it is in Boston. Healthcare providers in small towns in Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, or even larger cities in Florida and other states do not have access to the language of cultural humility, or the tools/referral resources like we have here. I look forward to starting my career as an FNP, and continuing to improve my practice and ground myself in a quest to make each of my patients feel at home and well cared in my office.

-Maureen Regan ’17

As a recent graduate of the Boston College MSN program, there are many thoughts and feelings that are associated with the transition from student to professional. Attending the 2017 AANP conference in Philly really allowed me to address many of the thoughts and much of the anxiety I was feeling related to transitioning from student to professional. At the conference I learned a lot, increased my confidence regarding my level of preparation to practice, and met a lot of nurse practitioners that made me feel welcomed in the profession. I attended many sessions about cardiac conditions and GYN issues in order to build on the material I had learned in school. Additionally, I attended a suturing class and learned how to insert an IUD. These were two skills I had always been interested in developing but never had he opportunity to learn. While attending many of the info sessions, I was able to reaffirm my confidence in my knowledge base, as well as fill in the gaps in areas where I was weak. In addition to everything I learned while at the conference, I made a lot of connections with other nurse practitioners, potential future employers, and previous colleagues. I gained a lot from this conference and was really grateful to have received the funding to attend it.

-Loic Assobmo ’17