Mar 28, 2024

Now Accepting Nominations for Equity-Minded Nurse Award Program

photo credit: (c) GETTY IMAGES/Biod

The AARP Center for Health Equity through NursingSM (A-CHEN) and the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action, with support from national nursing organizations, is pleased to open a call for applications for the Equity-Minded Nurse Awards Program to recognize nurses who are helping lead the way to health equity through practice, education, research, or leadership. We hope you will consider applying, nominating someone, or sharing word of the program with others who may be interested.

Five awardees in separate categories will receive $1,000 each, plus paid travel to a reception Sept.10 in Baltimore, where they will be recognized before an audience of national nursing leaders and educators at Coppin State University.

A-CHEN and the Campaign launched its equity-minded nurse initiative in 2022 as part of work to implement recommendations from the National Academy of Medicine report, the Future of Nursing 2020-2030: Charting a Path to Achieve Health Equity. We chose the first cohort of equity-minded nurses last year, defining equity-mindedness for nurses as so deeply understanding and embracing health equity, social justice, anti-racism, and cultural humility that these concepts emerge as normalized, automatic and default thought processes no matter the setting or the group of people they work with.

A-CHEN is a vehicle for change and a national resource for advancing health equity. The Campaign is an initiative of AARP Foundation, AARP and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation building a healthier America through nursing. The co-sponsoring nursing organizations are: The American Academy of Nursing, the American Association of Colleges of Nursing, the American Organization of Nursing Leadership, the National Commission to Address Racism in Nursing/ American Nursing Association and the National League for Nursing.

Individuals can apply or nominate others for an award now through April 30. A-CHEN and the Campaign will convene reviewers for each award category to evaluate applications and select finalists.

The award categories are: 

  • The Equity-Minded Rising Star for student or early career nurses whose contributions show promise for ongoing impact in reducing health disparities and advancing health equity. This award is co-sponsored by the National League for Nursing.
  • The Equity-Minded Research Award for a nurse whose research contributes to the science and body of knowledge that advances health equity. The nominee is expected to have leveraged their role as an experienced and capable researcher to drive change and to inform healthcare practice and/or policy. Co-sponsored by the American Academy of Nursing.
  • The Equity-Minded Educator Award for a nurse whose efforts demonstrate excellence in supporting a diverse nursing student body and inclusive teaching/learning practices, and whose teaching and/or curriculum design include topics that lead to the graduation of equity-minded nursesCo-sponsored by the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.
  • The Equity-Minded Leader Award for a nurse serving as a catalyst for change at a systems or organization level. Their work addresses and   dismantles policies and structures that contribute to disparities and inequities, helps create an overall climate of inclusion, and encourages the institution to focus on community needs. Co-sponsored by the American Organization for Nursing Leadership.

For more information about the awards program, please see the frequently asked questions on the Campaign’s website.   We thank you for your interest and hope you will consider applying or nominating someone.

About the Authors:

Reinhard is senior vice president and director of AARP Public Policy Institute and chief strategist for the Center to Champion Nursing in America and Family Caregiving Initiatives.

Villarruel is chair of the Future of Nursing: Campaign for Action’s Strategic Advisory Committee and Professor and the Margaret Bond Simon Dean of Nursing University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.