Years of Service to NPs
March 12, 2015
NATICK, MA—Nurse Practitioner Associates for Continuing Education (NPACE) celebrates its 35th anniversary this year. Founded in 1980, NPACE was one of the first providers of continuing education to focus solely on nurse practitioners, rather than combining the educational needs of nurse practitioners with those of other clinicians. Since 1980, NPACE has held over 175 conferences throughout the United States, reaching tens of thousands of nurse practitioners with its evidence-based programs.
As much as NPACE has evolved since its beginning, the organization still maintains the founders’ vision of providing continuing education that meets the unique educational needs of nurse practitioners. While NPACE is overseen by a Board of Directors and its programs are managed by a small staff, a much larger group shaped the organization throughout the years, including program participants who provided feedback to NPACE on the clinical and professional issues facing nurse practitioners. “A lot of people have had an impact on NPACE over the last 35 years, and every single one has helped to make NPACE the successful and well-respected organization it is today,” notes Board Chairperson, Karen Windle, RNC, MS, WHNP-BC.
NPACE’s first conference, held in Boston mere months after the organization was founded, drew 200 attendees. Early conferences were set in the Northeast and the organization soon branched out to offer programs in locations outside of New England, the first of which was held in Washington, DC. Since those early years, NPACE programs have evolved in response to changes within the nurse practitioner profession such as advances in prescribing authority, autonomous practice, and the designation of the Doctorate of Nursing Profession (DNP) degree. Today, NPACE programs are designed to address the clinical and professional issues faced by nurse practitioners practicing in primary care, with an emphasis on pharmacology education. And while the Boston conference is still one of NPACE’s most popular events, in 2015 the organization has 12 conferences scheduled throughout the United States, with plans to reach over 4,250 NPs at these live events.
NPACE is accredited as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s (ANCC) Commission on Accreditation. In addition to meeting the rigors of the ANCC standards, NPACE continues to distinguish itself from other CE providers by primarily using faculty who are practicing nurse practitioners and whose sessions are filled with clinical pearls the participants can implement immediately. “I like to attend NPACE conferences because, in the end, I know I will have gained new knowledge that is applicable to my practice. That gives me more confidence in providing the best care for my patients,” said one attendee from the Phoenix conference in 2014.
As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, NPACE looks for ways to give back to the nurse practitioner profession that has supported the organization for many years. NPACE started its Fourth for Free Rewards program in 2012 where attendees receive every fourth conference for free. Since its inception, NPACE has given away more than 465 free conferences. Other innovations include NPACE’s NP Faculty Program that recognizes the important role of academic faculty in preparing the next generation of nurse practitioner leaders and provides faculty with a complimentary NPACE conference each year.
In keeping with its history, NPACE is returning to the Washington, D.C. area, the location of a significant turning point for the organization and the NP community at large, for two programs in November.
“Celebrating our 35th anniversary is a historic milestone for NPACE, and we look forward to the next 35 years continuing what we do well: offering the highest quality continuing education programs to NPs, while also looking for new opportunities to expand the reach of our mission,” says president emerita, board member, and longtime guest speaker Mimi Secor, MS, MEd, FNP-C, NCMP, FAANP.
Nurse Practitioner Associates for Continuing Education (NPACE) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 1980 by a group of nurse practitioner leaders in New England. Nurse Practitioner Associates for Continuing Education (NPACE) provides practical, evidence-based continuing education and professional enrichment for NPs and APRNs with a focus on primary care and pharmacology. In addition to our well-known conferences, we offer online classes and monographs.