Nurse Leaders of Today and Tomorrow Convene for Conference on State of Nursing, Issues in Healthcare and Policy

Media Advisory

What:  The brightest minds in nursing will come together to share expertise on the state and future of the profession, healthcare, health policy and more at the Jonas Scholar Leadership Conference. Nearly 200 Scholars from all 50 states will convene at the event, hosted by the Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence in partnership with the American Association of Colleges of Nursing(AACN).  The conference will run concurrently with AACN’s Fall Semiannual Meeting, which will be attended by more than 600 nursing school deans and associate deans.

The conference will also include a special announcement of a new partnership among The Jonas Center, Khan Academy and AACN to create free, peer-developed, and expert-reviewed online resources to help nurses prepare for professional practice and sit for selected portions of the National Council Licensure Examination® (NCLEX-RN®).

Why: We have a dire shortage of nursing faculty and doctoral prepared nurses, leading nursing schools to turn away tens of thousands of qualified applicants – 75,587 applicants in 2011[i] – from baccalaureate and graduate nursing programs.  Launched in 2008, the Jonas Nurse Leaders Scholar Program is the largest initiative of its kind addressing the shortage of nursing faculty and efforts to increase the number of advanced practice clinical nurses by preparing nurses with doctoral degrees to step into these critical role.

  • To date, the program has supported more than 260 students at 88 schools across the U.S. and the Jonas Center recently announced a commitment to prepare 1,000 nurse faculty and clinical leaders by 2018. The Jonas Center’s $25 million commitment zeroes in on an especially pressing need in health care: nurses with specialized training in mental health issues.
  • The Jonas Veterans Healthcare Program, launched in 2012, further builds on the model to address veterans’ life-altering health issues by expanding the field of qualified caregivers through scholarships to doctoral-level nursing candidates, many of whom are active duty reservists or veterans themselves. These scholars focus on veterans needs identified by the White House and the VA, including mental health, traumatic brain injury, polytrauma, aging and women’s health.

When/Where: Oct. 27 – 29, J.W. Marriott & Willard Intercontinental, Washington, D.C.


  • Keynote: Lt. General Patricia D. Horoho, U.S. Army Surgeon General and Commanding General of the United States Army Medical Command will lead a discussion on issues affecting healthcare and nursing.
  • Barbara and Donald Jonas, co-founders of the Jonas Center for Nursing Excellence
  • Claire Fagin, PhD, RN, senior advisor to the Jonas Center, (Ret.) dean of the School of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania, (Ret.) President of the University of Pennsylvania
  • Brigadier General (Ret.) William Bester, senior advisor, Jonas Veterans Healthcare Program, 21st Chief of the Army Nurse Corps
  • Jane Kirschling, PhD, RN, FAAN, President, AACN
  • Rishi Desai, MD, Medical Fellow, Khan Academy
  • Numerous others nursing leaders, including the presidents of Sigma Theta Tau, National League for Nursing, the American Nurses Association and the American Academy of Nursing
  • Current Jonas Nurse Leaders Scholars and alumni from across the nation


Media Contact: For a conference agenda, more information or to attend/schedule interviews, please contact: Matt Rindone, 212-220-4444,

[i] 2011-2012 Enrollment and Graduations in Baccalaureate and Graduate Programs in Nursing, American Association of Colleges of Nursing