Guided by Why: AACN’s 2017-2018 Theme

Jan 19, 2018

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AACN President Christine Schulman says that children learn by asking WHY, using it to make sense of things and their world. She also says that it seems that asking why has become a lost art for adults. She asks, “Have we stopped asking why? Somewhere along the line, as grownups, have we become intimidated — or perhaps even irritated — by it? Have we forgotten how to use it as a tool to accomplish our goals: as a compass, as an anchor, as a voice about things that matter?”

It’s obvious to me that we nurses faithfully use why as our guide

Christine Schulman

In his book “Start With Why,” Simon Sinek says people are inspired to take action and be a part of something bigger than themselves when they understand the WHY behind what they’re doing. When they see how it connects to their own core purposes and beliefs.

This thought forms the basis of our theme for 2017-2018, Guided by Why.

“It’s obvious to me that we nurses faithfully use why as our guide,” Schulman says. “In fact, we can’t ever forget our WHY — be it talking to patients, or mastering hemodynamics, or conducting research. Because our WHYs are exactly what our patients, our colleagues, our healthcare systems, depend on.”

She invites others to join her in reconnecting with our WHY.

“When we do this,” she says, “we reaffirm our core purpose and have a guiding beacon for what we can — what we must — do to ensure that every patient gets the excellent care they deserve. And that every nurse has the tools and the skills they need to provide that care.”

The original art designed by Canadian artist Helen D’Souza illustrates the essence of this year’s theme.

We are happy to provide the theme artwork for your personal 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 colleagues and co-workers.
  • Use it on printed material such as newsletters, fliers, 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 Online Bookstore 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.

2018 Theme Poster - large
2018 Theme Poster - small
2018 Theme PowerPoint Template

Please contact the AACN Marketing team with questions