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Keywords

history of nursing, nursing education, nursing practice, nursing research

 

Authors

  1. McNeil, Paula A.
  2. Lindeman, Carol A.

Abstract

Background: The Western Institute of Nursing (WIN) celebrated its 60th anniversary and the 50th Annual Communicating Nursing Research Conference in April 2017.

 

Purpose: The purpose of this article is to provide a brief history of the origin, development, and accomplishments of WIN and its Communicating Nursing Research conferences.

 

Approach: Historical documents and conference proceedings were reviewed.

 

Summary: WIN was created in 1957 as the Western Council on Higher Education for Nursing under the auspices of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education. The bedrock and enduring value system of the organization is the interrelated nature of nursing education, practice, and research. There was a conviction that people in the Western region of the United States needed nursing services of excellent quality and that nursing education must prepare nurses capable of providing that care. Shared goals were to increase the science of nursing through research and to produce nurses who could design, conduct, and supervise research-all to the end of improving quality nursing care. These goals were only achieved by collaboration and resource sharing among the Western region states and organizations. Consistent with the goals, the first research conferences were held between 1957 and 1962. Conference content focused on seminars for faculty teaching research, on the design and conduct of research in patient care settings, and on identification of priority areas for research. The annual Communicating Nursing Research conferences began in 1968 and grew over the years to a total 465 podium and poster presentations on a wide array of research topics-and an attendance of 926-in 2016.

 

Conclusion: As WIN and its Communicating Nursing Research conferences face the next 50 years, the enduring values on which the organization was created will stand in good stead as adaptability, adjustments, and collaborative effort are applied to inevitable change for the nursing profession. It is the Western way.