Greetings from Minneapolis, where it is absolutely beautiful. I love this city.
Here at the Convention Center, I have access to the Press Room!
Okay, it’s a room with tables and internet connections, but it’s a Press Room!
I, ladies and gentlemen, am “the press”.
And I have the credentials to prove it!
It feels like an “All Access” pass at a rock concert!
I can’t thank the ENA enough, especially Tony Phipps, Media Director, for the opportunity to cover the ENA Annual Conference from this perspective.
Because of their generosity, I had an experience that doesn’t often come to an ENA member.
I met, and interviewed, the President of ENA: Denise King.
Ever wonder what kind of person becomes the President of the ENA?
Someone who is used to working hard, dealing with challenges every day.
An ER nurse. One of us.
Meet Denise King.
Denise started her career in ENA like most members.
She paid her dues and read the journal. That was about it. She did attend the Annual Conference one year and while she found it “mind-blowing” and “very moving”, she just kept paying her dues and reading the journal.
She’s embarrassed to say this, but her manager made her go to her first ENA meeting. Essentially she said, “There is a meeting and you are going with me.” Denise went.
She wasn’t sorry. Denise says that the ENA has been the best resource for her job in emergency nursing, no matter where she works, and that she found “professional fulfillment” by becoming more involved in the professional organization.
Say you’re a staff nurse and ENA member who wants to get more involved. Where do you start?
Surprisingly, Denise recommends becoming involved in the ENA at any level. If you aren’t connecting locally, get involved at the state level. If you don’t find what you want/need at the state level, you can participate at the national level.
Even if you are “just” a dues-paying, journal-reading member of ENA, your membership is important. Remember, ENA acts as the voice for all ER nurses, not just members. When Denise stands up and states the case for ER reforms, the fact that she has a 35,000 member association behind her carries a lot of weight.
Size matters. Membership in ENA is on a steady increase, and it isn’t hard to see why. Denise says that she tries hard to keep ENA “member-centered”.
Let’s put it this way. Denise can speak about the issues facing emergency nurses with clarity, specificity and with authority…and then turn right around and shoot-the-bull about life in the ER from the perspective of a staff nurse.
Because she is one. She’s one of us.
If you aren’t a member of ENA, maybe it’s time to take another look.