Volume 3, Issue 1

Message From the ONS Board of Directors President

Brenda Nevidjon, RN, MSN, FAANAt the January Board meeting, we will be envisioning ONS in 2013 and beyond. At the fall 2009 Institutes of Learning and Advanced Practice Nursing meetings, we randomly invited some attendees to participate in a focus group to get some input for this meeting. I was pleased to have the opportunity to talk with members of two of the groups and thank them for their feedback about their ONS experiences—some were members for many years, others for not as long. I’d like to share some of their thoughts with you and and welcome your additions as well.

The first question we discussed was how ONS had helped their practice. A number of leadership development opportunities were mentioned such as the Leadership Development Institute, the Chemo/Biotherapy trainer course, project teams, and chapter or SIG leadership roles. Many of the ONS educational resources helped with knowledge and skill development. Scholarships provided by the ONS Foundation for continuing education or degree programs were also valued.

We discussed in depth how chapters and SIGs have influenced their ONS experiences. Chapters and SIGs serve different purposes, but both are important structures in our organization. Several of the participants had served in leadership roles in both chapters and SIGs. They, like you, have experienced the challenges of being volunteer leaders. These challenges differ when leading a local group versus a group with national membership. The ONS staff members are a critical resource for both groups, and the participants identified how the staff members’ assistance has helped in critical times. We are fortunate to have talented national staff.

The last question we discussed was what they would like to see changed or not changed regarding their experiences with ONS. The Board will consider these suggestions when we meet. I invite you to send me your ideas about what ONS of the future might look like, what makes your experience positive, and what might be new initiatives to undertake.


Volume 3, Issue 1

2010 ONS Leadership/Mentorship Weekend and the SIG Leadership Workshop Scheduled

Mark your 2010 calendars for the ONS Leadership/Mentorship Weekend and the SIG Leadership Workshop, which are scheduled for mid-July at the Hyatt RegencyPittsburgh, PA (airport hotel). As in previous years, leaders from the various ONS affiliate boards and committees, plus SIG and chapter leaders, will be invited to participate in the annual summertime event. The Leadership Weekend groups will meet between July 14–18 (depending on the group; details to follow at a later date). The SIG Leadership Workshop will be scheduled from Thursday afternoon, July 15, through Saturday, July 17, and the chapter program will start Friday afternoon, July 16, and conclude Sunday (early afternoon), July 18. For information about the Leadership Weekend activities, contact Brian Taylor. For information regarding Mentorship Weekend and the SIG Leadership Workshop, contact Diane Scheuring.

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Volume 3, Issue 1

2010 SIG Excellence Award Recipient—Lymphedema Management SIG

Two applications were submitted for the 2010 SIG Excellence Award. The Lymphedema Management (LYM) SIG was the award recipient. Although it is a small SIG, it is very active and has done impressive work for the benefit of all oncology nurses.

Along with completing their responsibilities as a SIG (publishing three newsletters per year, e-mailing communication to their membership, completing and submitting an annual report, maintaining SIG Mission Statement and goals, planning and facilitating LYM SIG Planning/Networking Meeting at Congress, and submitting topics for Congress and Institutes of Learning) they have made contributions to the oncology nursing knowledge base through their contributions to the lymphedema management PEP card and by planning and organizing a Lymphedema Management SIG survey to increase nurses’ awareness of lymphedema as well as to encourage nurses to initiate lymphedema risk reduction and improve lymphedema management in practice. In collaboration with the National Lymphedema Network and American Lymphedema Framework, they promoted legislation to ensure access to lymphedema care. The SIG displayed a SIG poster at Congress and mentored leaders through personal communication within the SIG.

The LYM SIG’s leadership also includes an archivist and Web administrator for the LYM SIG Virtual Community who updates timely information and monitors the discussion area.

Congratulations! The LYM SIG will celebrate and hold their planning/networking meeting at Congress 2010 in a private room with refreshments.

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Volume 3, Issue 1

ONS Train the Trainer Program Heads East

Early November marked the launch of the ONS breast cancer training of trainers program in Bethlehem, West Bank, and Amman, Jordan. ONS has been working for over a year with the U.S.-Middle East Partnership for Breast Cancer Awareness and Research (PBCAR) to develop a modular program based on the ONS Site Specific Series: Breast Cancer online course. The initiative began in response to baseline assessments in both areas reflecting a distinct need for education and awareness regarding prevention and early detection as well as other topics such as post-surgical care and symptom management. The hope is that a training of trainers program will have the most effective and sustainable long-term impact in disseminating critical training and information to healthcare professionals and to the public.

To this end, an advisory panel of local experts worked with ONS to develop the three-day training program that will equip nursing leaders in the West Bank and Jordan to educate their colleagues, patients, and students in breast cancer care.

In 2008, ONS became the newest member of the PBCAR, joining such institutions and organizations as the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and Susan G. Komen for the Cure®.

Read more about the launch of the training of trainers program in Bethlehem and the U.S.-Middle East Partnership for Breast Cancer Awareness and Research.

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Volume 3, Issue 1

Chapter Updates

Early Childhood Education

Reaching out to young children is a great way to promote a healthy lifestyle. Several chapters have taken the initiative to conduct community outreach programs in early childhood education and health. Below are some great projects and ideas.

Bucks Montgomery Chapter
Presented and implemented the Kick Butts Program to a local private school.

Southern Arizona Chapter
In the process of working on a Healthy Children’s Arizona Program in which chapter members visit schools to educate younger students about eating healthy, exercising, the effects of smoking, and sun safety.

Metro Detroit Chapter
Chapter members presented TAR WARS, a tobacco prevention program to 4th grade classes in the metro Detroit area during the month of November—Lung Cancer Awareness month.

Membership Recruitment

This year, ONS implemented the 10 X 10 Campaign with the goal of obtaining 40,000 members by October, 2010. Chapters are encouraged to participate in this campaign by creatively engaging new chapter members. Below are ideas of how some chapters have recruited new members.

San Diego Chapter
Two years ago, this chapter set a goal of having "210 members by year 2010" to make their chapter stand out at Congress 2010, which will be in San Diego, CA. Below are the campaigns which have resulted in new members.

  • Formed a nurse liaison team to attend various institutions in the San Diego area and promote the chapter
  • Promote dinner meetings via e-mail.
  • Established an active Virtual Community for the chapter
  • Developed a Facebook page
  • Developed membership recruitment information and presented at several institutions with low membership
  • Have one or two dinners a year in geographical areas with low membership.
  • Developing posters to display at institutions in 2010 with applications for national and local membership starting in Jan 2010
  • Reaching out to nursing schools and offering free dinner meetings and networking.

Currently, we have 200+ members!

Mid-Hudson Valley Chapter
Offer incentives for new members by placing names in drawings for prizes.

Verrazano, NY Chapter
The chapter collaborates with the American Cancer Society at their yearly conference for nurses by setting up a table to promote ONS and the chapter.

Hawaii Chapter
Recruit new members through their annual Hawaii ONS conference in August.


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Volume 3, Issue 1

New York City ONS Chapter Celebrates Lung Cancer Awareness

On November 4th, a delegation of New York City (NYC) chapter members made their 10th annual appearance on the NBC Today Show to recognize Lung Cancer Awareness month. The purpose of this event was to raise awareness about the need for research funding to further the science of lung cancer therapies. Led by long-term chapter board member Ann Culkin, RN, OCN®, a loyal group of members representing local oncology care institutions braved the weather and met at the Rockefeller Center at 6 am. A special relationship with Today Show weather man Al Roker, whose father was treated in New York for lung cancer, guarantees great exposure and air time each year for the group to relay their message to a nationally-televised audience. Ms. Culkin had a great opportunity to make her point and also highlight the NYC Chapter of ONS. The lung cancer awareness celebration is the oldest and most beloved NYC ONS Chapter event and one of which the chapter is most proud. Congratulations!

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Volume 2, Issue 4

Virtual Community Best Practices

Jenny Shinsky, BS, Membership Specialist
Pittsburgh, PA

A great deal of information is available that chapters and SIGs can place on their Virtual Communities (VCs) to help keep members informed. More members participate when VCs are updated on a regular basis. Here are some ideas for what to put on your VC.

  • Advertisements for job postings (Chapters can charge a fee for the listing of job announcements. Please view the Advertising Recommendations.)
  • Announcements
  • Application to join chapter (This is important so that interested ONS members can join the chapter.)
  • Calendar (Upcoming meetings and educational seminars)
  • Community outreach (past and present)
  • Highlight a chapter or SIG leader
  • Highlight the different cancer months
  • Leadership information
  • Membership recognition
  • Minutes
  • Newsletter
  • Photos
  • Scholarship and award opportunities

To see how other chapters and SIGs have been successful with their VCs, check out the following.

For more information, contact Jenny Shinsky.
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Volume 3, Issue 1

ONS National Elections Open in January

The ONS Nominating Committee is pleased to announce the 2010 election period started on January 4, 2010, and will run through February 15, 2010. “Get to Know the Candidates,” the official slate of nominees, can be found on the ONS Web site where members can learn more about the candidates and their positions on issues and can listen to a brief podcast interview of each candidate.

Election information and ballots have been distributed, so please take a moment to learn more about the candidates by visiting the official election pages on the ONS Web site.

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ONS Leadership Update is a quarterly e-newsletter published by the
Oncology Nursing Society