By Jane W. Ball, DrPH, MPH, RN
Just like Hopkins Nurses, this year has been unique. We had to adjust our traditional programming and adapt to new methods of interaction. While COVID-19 has forced the JHNAA to launch into virtual programming more quickly than anticipated, when faced with this challenge and opportunity, we formed the Alumni Engagement Committee. Over the past six months, JHNAA has hosted several virtual coffee chats and intimate JHSON alumni conversations. Members of our Alumni Engagement Committee are participating in planning by identifying topics, conversation leaders, and questions to pose.
While not what we had anticipated, this year’s virtual Alumni Weekend events allowed us to connect with more alumni—many who otherwise would not have been able to join us in person. This year with Alumni Weekend, we were able to engage a broader group of alumni spanning across all decades—and not just reunion years. During our trivia night, we had alumni participating from the Class of 1958 through 2018. I am grateful that technology has made these interactions possible. This has been one of the bright spots in our new normal.
Adapting to this new territory, other Alumni Weekend events included a “Nurse Practitioner Led Telehealth” presentation that provided continuing education credits; a panel discussion of “Hopkins Nurses in Pandemics” with John M. Barry, Jason Farley, Devon Everson, and Deborah Baker; and finally, the Johns Hopkins Nurses’ Alumni Association Business Meeting and Dean’s Address.
A silver lining with the COVID-19 pandemic has been the increased access and convenience of remote interaction. I encourage you to make the most of our situation and engage in these alumni conversations and virtual programming.
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