Message from the President – December 2021

November 30, 2021

Dear OADN Members:

As I traveled home from the OADN Annual Convention in Austin, I reflected on how thrilled I was to see so many of you in person and have the opportunity to meet and speak with you directly. It was inspiring to hear your stories and learn about your experiences over the past 20 months. I believe we have truly risen to the challenge and demonstrated the ability “to Move Beyond 2020,” with each of you being a testament to overcoming adversity. All the exceptional presentations showed resilience, creativity, and a steadfast determination to provide the best possible learning environment for each student to be successful at a critically challenging time when competent nurses are desperately needed.

I was amazed by the faculty and student poster presentations this year. It was so exciting to see the winning students called to the stage at the Town Hall Meeting to receive their monetary awards. Thank you to OADN’s exclusive compliance partner CastleBranch for such a generous donation that enabled OADN to recognize the demanding work of the superior faculty and student poster presenters. In particular, the student poster presentations provided a wonderful learning experience for the students, and it will surely be a memorable event as they continue their education and advance their careers in the nursing profession.

Another terrific opportunity at the Convention this year was the Leadership Workshop, Your Leadership Journey: Invest in Yourself! I spoke with several of you who participated, and you all provided incredibly positive feedback about this wonderful professional leadership opportunity. As you may know, this initiative was part of our strategic plan for the past year. Mary Dickow, OADN Director of Leadership Development, assembled a wonderful group of speakers to help provide information and essential skills every leader needs to be successful when navigating their professional journey. We announced the new OADN Leadership Institute, accepting applications for two (10 participant) cohorts in 2022. The OADN Leadership Institute will be a four-month cohort-based program and will provide participants with an excellent opportunity to exchange ideas, and share perspectives through mentoring, virtual seminars, roundtable discussions, and peer-to-peer coaching in a supportive environment. The application cycle runs from November 29, 2021, through January 10, 2022. Contact Mary at for more information.

I would like to thank everyone who was able to attend the OADN Convention, both in person and virtually. We deeply appreciate your support and welcome the opportunity to provide resources that will assist you in your daily work. Our goal is for you to walk away from every OADN event with the most valuable, up-to-date information and resources you can apply to your program as soon as you return home.

Thank you again for trusting me to represent you as your OADN President. I will continue to do my best to work with the OADN Board of Directors and staff to advocate for your interests and help advance OADN. As we move into this busy time of the year with semesters ending, family responsibilities, and holiday commitments, I hope you can find some time to take care of yourself. As I have stated in previous messages, we cannot continue to help others if we do not take care of ourselves!




My wish is that you and your families have a blessed holiday season!

Please take care,








Laura Schmidt, DNP, FNP-BC
President, OADN