2016 ONCC Board of Directors Election

Voting will open November 10 for the 2016 ONCC Board of Directors election.  The ONCC Nominating Committee has slated two candidates to fill one position on the Board (see their biographies below). The nurse who is elected will join the board for a three-year term that begins in May 2017.

How can you prepare for the election?

  1. Read each candidate’s bio-sketch and response to the question “How would you fulfill the mission of ONCC?” before the election. 
  2. Review the composition of the current ONCC Board of Directors
  3. Add this email address “noreply@directvote.net” to your email contacts or safe senders list. Your election ballot will be sent from this address.
  4. Check your email on November 10 for the link to your online ballot.
  5. Vote for the candidate of your choice. 

All voting must be completed online. Voting will close on December 22, 2016. Election results will be announced in January 2017. (Nurses who are ONCC certified as of October 15, 2016 are eligible to vote.)

2016 ONCC Board of Directors Election Candidates

Andria Caton, BSN, RN, OCN®, CHPN
Clara Beaver, MSN, RN, AOCNS®, ACNS-BC
Community Education Nurse/ Coordinator of Clinical Staff Development
Northeast Georgia Medical Center Gainesville, GA
Manager, Clinical Nurse Specialist
Karmanos Cancer Center Detroit, MI

About Andria

Leadership Experience
  • OCN® Test Development Committee, ONCC, Member 2011-2016, Chair 2015-2016
  • Lanier Georgia Chapter of ONS, President 2004-2006, 2008-2010, 2016-2018
  • Georgia Nurses Association Council of Nursing Practice, 2009-2013
  • Georgia TEAM UP Task Force to Reduce Breast and Cervical Cancer Mortality, 2004-2009
  • Northeast Georgia Medical Center, Clinical Educators Committee, Pain Team, Chair

Response to the question, “How would you further the mission of ONCC?"
My OCN® credential has provided more opportunities and has opened more doors for me than any other event in my professional career. Maybe for some nurses, having the OCN® credential is mandatory for employment or necessary for financial advancement, but for me, it was and is about being a part of a very special group of nurses who are dedicated to the professional values of providing exceptional patient care, striving for clinical excellence, and life-long learning. Many of these amazing OCN® nurses have shaped my clinical practice and nursing values since becoming an oncology nurse. Based on my experiences, I deeply believe that OCN® role models and mentors are necessary to lay the foundation of professional practice for novice oncology nurses.

Even with all the evidence and information about the benefits of certification, oncology nurses often feel that certification is out of reach for a variety of reasons. During my recent work as a member of the OCN® Test Development Committee, I had the opportunity to hear the concerns that nurses have about becoming certified. Some of the certification barriers for nurses are time to study, upfront costs of certification, and the lack of financial incentives. By far, the most frequent concerns of nurses surrounding certification are fears of the exam and the fear of failing the exam. I believe there are unique opportunities to promote the ONCC mission by helping to improve the reputation of the exam and dispelling fears about the exam. Utilizing the most current evidenced-based approaches, implementation of interventions to address test anxiety and strategies like preparing for the exam using the test blueprint, study apps, and online mentoring programs may help nurses gain the skills and confidence needed to become certified.

In summary, I feel that I would best support the mission of the ONCC by helping to advance professional practice through mentor support, inspiring novice oncology nurses at the local levels, encouraging partnerships with health care organizations to reduce financial obstacles, exploring innovative initiatives to help test takers, and as always, advocating for the specialty and the nurses that I love best.

About Clara

Leadership Experience
  • AOCNS® Test Item Writer, ONCC, 2014
  • ONS Clinical Nurse Specialist Community, Coordinator-Elect, 2015-Present
  • Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing, Reviewer, 2015-Present
  • Integration Task Force, McLaren-Karmanos Cancer Center, Nursing Lead, 2014-Present
  • Michigan Patient Advocacy Representative, 2016

Response to the question, “How would you further the mission of ONCC?"
Being a certified oncology nurse has been a professional goal of mine since I became an oncology nurse 18 years ago. I have been continuously certified for 16 years and currently hold an AOCNS® certification.

As a board member for ONCC my mission is to promote the importance of certification to oncology nurses by working with ONCC and ONS to provide education about the value of certification. As an advocate for ONCC I have talked with groups of nurses to understand the barriers in working toward certification. Many state they are worried about taking the test because they don’t have a lot of chemotherapy experience. My mission is to help ONCC work with these individuals to understand the test is not as “scary” as they have thought by using mentors of nurses who have recently taken and passed the exam.

While working with ONCC as a test item writer and passing score task force member we were told to think about what a novice or new oncology nurse would need to know to be successful or minimally competent. I feel the general population of nurses who are looking to take this exam do not understand that concept and feel the test will be overwhelming and written toward more experienced nurses. I feel ONCC can help educate and support more nurses in certification by explaining this process more clearly to those nurses looking at certification.

My main mission as an ONCC board member would be to support oncology nurses who are interested in certification, but are worried about taking the exam. I have had many years of experience helping nurse prepare for the OCN® exam with a successful passage rate. I would use this experience to help ONCC reach out to oncology nurses and offer assistance in studying and taking the exam.