In 2024, the National Teaching Institute & Critical Care Exposition (NTI) celebrates its 50th anniversary. As AACN President Terry Davis (then president-elect) said in her NTI address, “Together, we are so extraordinary. What a profound sea change we’ve experienced. There’s more to come. Someone must drive that change. If not us, then who? Who do you trust with such profound responsibility? What happens next is too important to let others decide.”
Davis introduced Rising Together, the AACN theme for 2023-2024, by sharing a deeply personal story. In her decades as a trauma nurse, Davis had seen a lot. But nothing prepared her to hear hospital staff say they were performing CPR on Ed, her husband of 46 years. They struggled to regain a rhythm.
“For the first time ever, I was on the other side of the door,” Davis said. “I was the family member not allowed to come in, because Ed was too unstable. After years of taking care of unstable patients, can you even imagine hearing that?”
Once Ed was sedated and intubated, a compassionate healthcare provider allowed her to see him. “I kissed his head and his hand, and I told him, ‘You have my heart.’” In reflection, Davis understood that “being present allowed my family some dignity in his final moments. Being present provided me with some peace. It was what I needed to keep breathing, to lift me up just enough to put one foot in front of the other and move forward.”
This experience opened her eyes. “As nurses, we have the power to rise together, to advocate, to open the doors for patients’ families in these critical moments.”
Rising together, we will lift each other up. Rising together, we will advance our journey. Rising together, we will manifest the future.
Davis urged nurses to embrace and advance change by stepping into leadership roles and working toward shared governance. “We must share our care for each other,” she said. “As nurses, we recognize distress in others. Harder to see it in ourselves.” She also discussed her pioneering work in telemedicine, when “we stood tall and had great courage, despite the fact that many people did not want telemedicine, especially in the ICU. We had to have hard conversations to get to where we are today.” She encouraged the audience to lean into those uncomfortable conversations.
Rising Together we can help meet the needs of our teams, our patients and our families, Davis said. “Rising together, we will lift each other up. Rising together, we will advance our journey. Rising together, we will manifest the future.” If every nurse thinks of one change they can make, then “like a ripple in the ocean, that movement, that motion, that momentum will manifest and build into a wave that can touch every shore.”
To illustrate the interconnectedness of this year’s theme, Helen D’Souza designed original art. “The nurse is a bridge between the patient and the doctor, between the patient and their family, between illness and recovery,” D’Souza said. A golden braid forms a bridge to symbolize this connection.
We are happy to provide the theme artwork for your use. Here are some suggestions for integrating the theme into your daily work:
- Ponder the artwork to decide how it relates to your interpretation of this year's theme. Discuss its meaning with your co-workers and other colleagues.
- Use it on printed material such as newsletters, flyers, posters, handouts and announcements.
- Use PowerPoint templates for internal presentations, such as those that promote your chapter/institution's meetings and events.
- Use approved theme art products from the AACN Store to generate revenue for your chapter.
Please be advised that the theme art:
- Must always appear in its entirety and not be modified or altered in any way.
- May be used to promote local chapter events and activities.
- May be used in social media in a posting but not as an identifier for a chapter, institution or individual (e.g., "profile picture" or "cover photo" on Facebook).
- May not be imprinted on any item (T-shirt, hat, mug, etc.) that will be sold.
To download the artwork, right click on a link, choose "Save Target As ..." and save to your computer.
2024 Theme Graphic - Chapters
2024 Theme Poster - Large
2024 Theme Poster - Small
2024 Theme PowerPoint Template
Please contact the AACN Creative Partners team with questions.