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COMMITTEES: Clinical Innovations
 

The Innovations in Clinical Practice Committee plans, implements, and evaluates programs with a specific focus on clinical nursing innovations.

The committee is composed of a chairperson and a minimum of five members, each of whom coordinates a specific function.

The Innovations Coordinators are:  Finance/Program Treasurer, Publicity , Program , Accommodations , CEU and Evaluation

Responsibilities of the Chairperson

* The chair of the Innovations in Clinical Practice committee will coordinate the activities of the committee and provide support to members during program planning and implementation.
* Schedule regular meetings for the committee and prepare an agenda for each meeting.
* Ensure that minutes of all meetings are recorded and distributed to committee members and to the Alpha Chi president.
* Explore members' interest in specific committee functions, and appoint coordinators for each function.
* Attend monthly Executive Board meetings and/or communicate with the Executive Board through the chapter president regarding the activities and progress of the committee.
* In consultation with members, identify a program topic, format, fee (s), speaker(s), and proposed title that is congruent with the focus on innovations in clinical practice.  Liaison with the chair of the chapter Program Committee to avoid duplication of effort and similarity of topics.
* Consult with the Executive Board regarding current policies and practices regarding administrative support, designated printer, chapter newsletter deadlines, and other issues relevant to planning and implementing the program.
* Prepare a line item budget for the program and submit it to the Executive Board for approval.  The budget should include a detailed list of expected expenses, projected attendance, and a break-even projection.  Consult with the chapter treasurer for guidelines as to the format and deadline for submitting the budget.
* Provide committee members with samples of correspondence and other materials from previous programs to assist them in their functions.
* Prepare a detailed time line for the completion of committee tasks and ensure that deadlines are met by members.
* When speakers (s) and the program date are confirmed, extend an invitation to the Dean of Boston College School of Nursing (BCSON) to attend the program as a guest of the chapter and to bring greetings on behalf of the BCSON; and to the Alpha Chi president to bring greetings from the chapter.  Ask the dean to designate a substitute if s/he is unable to attend the program.  Follow-up as needed to ensure that both names are included in the program flyer.   
* Monitor program expenses and registration response to ensure a break-even outcome.  With members, identify strategies to reduce expenses and/or increase registration as needed.
* Trouble-shoot for committee members as they fulfill their tasks during program planning and implementation.
* Send a written thank you note to the Dean of BCSON and the chapter president after the program is presented.
* Schedule a final committee meeting to review evaluation results and financial outcomes.  Seek recommendations from members regarding their roles and/or strategies to improve future program planning and implementation.
* Identify members who wish to continue to serve on the committee and communicate this to the chapter president.
* Complete an annual report that summarizes the committee objectives, program goals, budget, outcomes, and recommendations for future programs.  Attach the evaluation summary and forward all to the chapter president.  Consult with the Executive Board in advance for guidelines for writing the report and the deadline for submission.
* Consult the list of materials to save for the chapter archives.  Forward these to the Alpha Chi president along with the annual committee report.

Responsibilities of the Finance Coordinator/Program Treasurer

* The Finance Coordinator/Program Treasurer will solicit donations from business or other sources to defray the expenses of the program, if requested by the chapter president.
* Record actual vs. budgeted program expenses as they occur.  Compute line item variances monthly and report significant variances to the chair at each meeting.
* Submit all program bills, invoices, and member reimbursement request forms with receipts to the chapter treasurer for payment.
* Receive and account for all monies/checks/fees received for the program and forward these on a timely basis to the chapter treasurer for deposit in the chapter account.
* Maintain a list of those who register for the program and keep a weekly running account of the number of registrants and revenues from registration fees.  Communicate these figures to the chair on a regular basis between committee meetings.
* Create an alphabetized master list of registrants' names, addresses, social security numbers and whether registration fee has been paid.
* Attend the program and with assistance if needed, register all participants, using the master list.
* Provide a list of all who attended the program to the committee chair for analysis, and to the CEU and Evaluation Coordinator for the chapter's permanent continuing education files.
* Prepare a final registration and financial summary for presentation at the last committee meeting and for inclusion in the final report. Include recommendations to improve financial and attendance projections for future programs.

Responsibilities of the Publicity Coordinator

* The Publicity Coordinator will with the committee chair and members, determine the scope of publicity activities:  mailings, ads, press releases, and other announcements.
* Determine deadlines for each method to be used; forward to the chair for inclusion on the program planning timeline. 
* Discuss with the committee the cost-effectiveness of brochure mailings to other than chapter members (BCSON alumni; other chapters; healthcare agencies, etc.) and decide the final target group (s) for mailing.
* Consult the Executive Board for guidance as to any others to whom the brochure should be mailed, to determine the final print order.
* Contact the designated printer to confirm the timeframe needed and deadlines for printing the program brochure. 
* Identify chapter newsletter deadlines; prepare and submit a written announcement of the program to be published in each newsletter distributed before the program date.
* Design a "Save the Date" notice, if requested, to be included as an insert in the chapter newsletter.  Forward final copy to the newsletter editor on a timely basis.
* Examine program brochures used in the past to determine an appealing layout.  Design the brochure using the Sigma Theta Tau symbol on the front and incorporate all relevant information about the program; a registration form; and travel and parking directions within the layout. Include the chapter's non-profit mailing indicia and return address on the address section of the brochure.
* Present a mock-up of the program brochure to committee members for review and proofing.
* Contact the chapter secretary to request purchase of appropriate mailing labels from national if labels are not on hand.  Identify cost-effective ways to mail or otherwise distribute the program brochure to other target groups.  The typical positive response rate is 1-3% of the total number of brochures distributed.
* Send the final brochure mock-up to the printer with print order, including the number to be printed, color and weight of paper stock, and directions regarding to whom the proofs should be sent for corrections or approval.
* Arrange for non-profit mailing of the final brochure.  (If BC press prints the brochure, they can also handle the mailing.  If another commercial printer is used, an external mailing house may have to be used.  Either way, whoever mails the brochure will need the labels on hand to ensure a timely mailing).
* Print extra brochures for archival purposes and for additional distribution (chapter agency liaisons, committee and Executive Board members, BCSON faculty and students, and others as identified by committee members).
* Arrange for distribution of non-mailed brochures on a timely basis.
* Prepare a list of all publicity methods.  Forward to the CEU and Evaluation Coordinator for inclusion in the program evaluation.
* Arrange for the chapter photographer to take photos at the program for archival and publicity purposes.  Request that both black and white (publicity) and color (archival) photos be taken if feasible.  Consult with the chapter treasurer regarding the current policy on waiving the photographer's program registration fee in return for this service.
* Prepare a summary of the program for publication in the chapter newsletter.
* Prepare a final publicity summary for presentation at the last committee meeting and for inclusion in the annual committee report.  Include recommendations to improve publicity for future programs.

Responsibilities of the Program Coordinator:

The responsibilities that follow apply to program planning for a 2 to 3 hour dinner meeting held on campus.  If a more extensive or longer program is planned, refer to the final report and archival materials from the 25th Anniversary Innovations conference, 1995.

* The Program Coordinator will brainstorm with committee members to develop a list of individuals who can speak to the program topic.  Prioritize the list for contact purposes.
* Consult with the committee chair and members regarding the amount of the honorarium to be offered; ask the chair to confirm the amount with the Executive Board if it is significantly more than what has been typically offered.
* Contact potential speaker (s) by telephone to determine availability on the projected program dates and interest in the topic chosen.  Discuss the honorarium amount, and confirm its acceptability.  Continue this process until a final speaker is confirmed, reporting declines or other problems to the chair as they arise.
* Using sample materials from previous programs, send a letter to the speaker verifying the details discussed in the telephone conversation.  Also request the speaker's CV; a content outline and objectives, including a brief narrative description of program content; and a short biographical sketch for the introduction.  Confirm or suggest changes to the speaker's proposed title and elicit audiovisual or other needs that the speaker may have.  Using the established program timeline, state a deadline for the speaker's written response to all requests.
* Maintain ongoing telephone or written contact with the speaker until all requests and programmatic needs are met.
* Notify the Accommodations Coordinator of the speaker's audiovisual or other program needs, and special requests such as overnight accommodations.
* Provide the speaker's narrative description of program, objectives, content outline, CV and program title to the committee chair, and to the coordinators of Publicity and CEU and Evaluation on a timely basis.
* Forward program brochures to the speaker, to the dean of the BCSON, and to the chapter president as soon as they arrive from the printer.
* Arrange to meet and greet the speaker at or before the program. Escort the speaker to the program if necessary; introduce the speaker to key attendees; and serve as the speaker's primary contact throughout the program.
* Open the program by welcoming the dean of the BCSON or his/her designate and the chapter president. 
* Introduce the speaker using the provided biographical sketch.
* Close the program with thanks to the speaker and to others who contributed to its success.
* Arrange with the chapter treasurer in advance to have the speaker's honorarium available at the program; present it to the speaker after closing the program.
* If there has been a prior agreement to reimburse the speaker for program-related expenses, provide the speaker with a deadline for submitting an invoice and receipts for same.
* Send the speaker a thank-you letter after the program, incorporating selected evaluation comments and enclosing a check for expenses if appropriate.
* Prepare a final program summary for presentation at the last committee meeting and for inclusion in the annual committee report.  Include recommendations to improve the quality of future programs.

Responsibilities of the Accommodations Coordinator

Programs are generally held on the Boston College Campus.  Room bookings and support services are provided by the BC Bureau of Conferences (BOC).  To avoid conflicts with other BC events, contact needs to be made with the BOC (522-0320) as soon as the program date, time, and projected number of attendees are decided by the Committee.  The BOC publishes guidelines that includes their many rules and regulations, as well as menus, costs, and the capacity of the function rooms on campus.  They prefer to work with a BC faculty member, so it would be well to have one serve as the Accommodations Coordinator.  A copy of the chapter's tax-exempt ID statement from the Chapter Treasurer will also be required.

* The Accommodations Coordinator Subcommittee will:review the BOC guidelines to become familiar with services offered, room capacities, the room booking process, menus, deadlines, and costs.
* With the committee, identify at least two function rooms on the Boston College campus that would meet program needs.
* Call the BOC to determine room availability.  Book a room verbally and follow up in writing as required by the BOC.
* If requested by the program coordinator, arrange for overnight accommodations for the speaker.
* Four to six weeks before the program, provide the BOC contact person with details such as menu choice, room set up, program schedule, AV needs, estimated number of attendees, flowers, and other identified needs.  Request a written cost estimate from the BOC and confirmation of the room booking. Details can be provided by the coordinator by telephone but should be followed up with a memo that includes a copy of the chapter's tax-exempt ID form.
* Identify other needs for the program such as signage, name tags, chapter banner or flag, podium drape and the like.
* Determine what the chapter has on hand and who will bring the materials to the program.  Arrange for additional materials to be ordered via the STTI catalog as needed.  Prepare the needed signage or ask for a Committee volunteer to perform this task.
* With committee members, determine which parts of the presentation will be audio or video taped for the chapter archives.  Arrange for the necessary equipment, and designate an individual to be accountable for this function at the program.
* Designate an individual to assist the speaker with AV materials and equipment.
* One week before the program, notify the BC campus police of the date, time, and location of the event.
* Contact the BOC at least three working days before the program to give the exact number of program attendees for room setup and food ordering purposes.  Arrange to have the bill sent to the chapter treasurer for payment.
* With other committee members, arrive at the function room one hour before the program to oversee room and registration table set-ups; AV equipment functioning; and general readiness for smooth program functioning.
* Respond to problems that may arise during the program.
* Collect the audio or video tapes at the end of the program.  Forward to the chair for return to the chapter president with other archival materials.
* Confirm the actual BOC costs with the chapter treasurer.  Include the total in a final summary for presentation at the last committee meeting and for inclusion in the annual committee report.  Complete the summary with recommendations to improve future programs.

Responsibilities of the CEU and Evaluation Coordinator

The application for continuing education contact hours for Clinical Innovations programs is submitted to the Chapter president for action by the Executive Board at least one week before a regularly scheduled Executive Board meeting.  Check with the president for meeting dates and application guidelines.  It should be prepared and submitted as soon as all relevant information is obtained from the speaker, but no later than one week before the last Executive Board meeting before the program date.  Refer to sample copies of previous applications for format.

* The CEU and Evaluation Coordinator will confirm the correct title, date, location, and time of the program, and all relevant speaker data.
* Obtain objectives, content outline, resume or CV, and a brief biographical sketch for each speaker/presentation from the program coordinator.
* If necessary, prepare a biographical sketch for each speaker, based on resume(s) or CV(s).  Include education, present position, major honors, and major publications related to the topic, and any other information that will help the Executive Board make a judgment as to the appropriateness of the speaker.
* Prepare the CEU application, including the purpose of the program; amount of time devoted to each presentation; the objectives, content outline, and teaching methods (including audiovisual aids) for each presentation; and a biographical sketch for each speaker.
* Obtain a list of publicity methods from the publicity coordinator, and devise a face sheet with questions to determine how attendees learned about the program and to collect demographic data from attendees, including whether they are Alpha Chi members.
* Formulate an evaluation tool based on the objectives of the program.  Include mandatory information related to the facility and program organization; and the face sheet to be used for additional program evaluation.
* Submit the required number of copies of the CEU application and all pertinent attachments to the chapter president for action by the Executive Committee.
* After the application is approved, complete the standard Alpha Chi CEU certificate; obtain appropriate signatures; and duplicate enough copies to distribute to those who attend the program.
* Duplicate a similar number of program evaluation tools, including the attached face sheet.
* Forward evaluation tools and CEU certificates to the Finance Coordinator/Program Treasurer for distribution at the program.
* After the program, tabulate the evaluation data on a clean evaluation tool and face sheet.  Attach a listing of attendees' narrative comments.
* Obtain a final copy of the program registration list from the Finance Coordinator/Program Treasurer.
* Forward copies of the evaluation summary and the registration list to the chapter president for the permanent CEU files; to the committee chair for analysis; and to the program coordinator for inclusion of selected evaluation data in thank you letter(s) to speaker(s).
* Present the evaluation summary at the final committee meeting.  Include recommendations to improve the CEU and evaluation processes for future programs.

 
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Sigma Theta Tau International, Alpha Chi Chapter
Boston College Connell School of Nursing
140 Commonwealth Avenue
Chestnut Hill, MA 02467