Think back to the moment you successfully passed your initial nursing licensure exam to begin your journey as a licensed nurse. How did you feel? Did you know that you wanted to become an oncology nurse?

Look Back on Your Nursing Journey to Discover Your Future With ONS
Danya Garner, PhD, RN, NPD-BC, OCN®, CCRN-K, 2023–2024 ONS President

For me, I remember the day like it was yesterday. I had relocated to another city to begin a job as an oncology nurse, but it was contingent upon successfully passing my initial nursing licensure exam. For peer support, a fellow classmate and I scheduled our exams together, and when we arrived for the exams, we discovered that two additional classmates were also testing there that day. I remember a feeling of support and camaraderie as we embarked on our professional nursing journeys together.

I was fortunate to be mentored early in my nursing career to join ONS and my local Houston ONS Chapter. My mentors encouraged me to use all of ONS’s resources, such as the evidence-based journal articles, courses, books, and tools, and to take the OCN® certification exam to continue to develop my oncology nursing practice.

Specialty of Care

Oncology nursing is a prime example of the art and science of nursing. Technology, care delivery, and treatment interventions advance, but the oncology nurse’s pulse remains the same: We deliver sophisticated care modalities with an immense human connection as we embody ONS’s vision to lead the transformation of cancer care.

Whether you work as a direct care clinician at a comprehensive cancer center delivering specialized care to specific cohorts of patients with cancer or at a community hospital on a medical-surgical inpatient unit caring for a variety of patients, including those with cancer, we are all oncology nurses. One of the most rewarding aspects of being an oncology nurse is its diversity. We are a diverse group of oncology nurses caring for diverse patients in diverse settings. As such, ONS embraces its commitment to supporting those who provide care for diverse patient populations.

Engagement of Members

It takes a village, a village of ONS members, to uphold ONS’s mission to advance excellence in oncology nursing and quality cancer care. Where do you envision your professional journey as an oncology nurse heading? We have places for you at ONS to volunteer. Visit the volunteer page to discover your path.

Being involved in ONS has given me a professional space to improve my holistic nursing care for patients with cancer, work in teams with other like-minded oncology nurses, and pursue optimized development opportunities. The often-cited quote, “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give,” truly represents a nursing journey. Take a moment to look back, then continue forward to excel professionally while serving others. There is space for everyone at ONS.