Celebrating Chapters and their Members: Highlight on the Northeast Chapter

written by Arlene T. Farren, PhD, RN, AOCN, CTN-A

Nursing organizations are their members and Chapters enhance the relationship of members and their organizations. I am a member of the Northeast Chapter of the Transcultural Nursing Society (TCNS). March 2021 we celebrate 20 years as a Chapter approved by TCNS Board 3/19/2001!! It has been a wonderful relationship and one that offered a greater connection with the TCNS.

I recall our first articulation of intent to form a Chapter. I was on the City University of New York (CUNY) Nursing Research Committee, a collaboration of CUNY Nursing Faculty members from some 23 colleges throughout the City of New York. Dr. Elizabeth Ann Manhart Barrett was the chair of the Committee at that time. The group wished to hold a research event in 2000 at Hunter College. I served on the program planning committee along with Marianne Jeffreys (as I recall Marianne was chair of the program planning committee), Eleanor Campbell, and myself served on that committee among others of course. Madeleine Leininger was selected as our keynote speaker. It was the best attended program in the Nursing Research Committees history! Dr. Leininger remained with us throughout the day and even played the piano for us at the end of the event. There was a discussion at the end of the day regarding the level of interest in initiating a chapter of the TCNS. There was a great deal of excitement and Dr. Leininger had an even greater gleam in her eye than might have been usual!

So as they say what happened after that is history! Others will share the Chapter history but I’ll share some highlights from my warm memories. The Chapter held meetings in varied locations to promote accessibility for our geographically dispersed membership, meet ups and field trips at interesting venues were great activities pre-pandemic! We had annual programs as a chapter in places like Ellis Island! In 2005 we hosted the TCNS Annual Conference in NYC at the Baruch College Conference Center – a large and beautiful venue. It was a wonderful and successful event. In our more recent years we agreed that collaboration with other culturally diverse and interested nursing organizations would be a mission/vision-consistent approach for us. We have had a wonderful collaboration for networking programs with the Black Nurses Association, the Hispanic Nurses Association, the Philippine Nurses Association, and Sigma Chapters within our constituency, as well as others – we actually collaborated with some 10 or 11 nursing organizations on some of our networking programs.

I served on the Board of the Northeast Chapter in a variety of offices over the years since our formal acceptance as a Chapter in 2001. As an outgrowth of that involvement, I, like many others, have had opportunities to provide service to the TCNS. I served with the founding committee for the credentialing work, as a grant/scholarship reviewer, member of the Foundation Committee, and now as Chair of the Foundation Committee. I am proud to say that after much preparation and planning, along with Board collaboration and approval, the Northeast Chapter contributed a TCNS scholarship for those studying transcultural nursing. I am proud of the scholarship, service, leadership, and outstanding philanthropy the Northeast Chapter of the TCNS has had the privilege to share with others. I congratulate our Founding President, Dr. Marianne Jeffreys, our current President, Dr. Connie Sensor, all the other Chapter Presidents and Board Members, and our dedicated members who are indeed our organization. I look forward to the growth and accomplishments of the next twenty years!

Arlene T. Farren, PhD, RN, AOCN, CTN-A

Associate Professor Emerita, CUNY