My undergraduate alma mater is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. Their communications recognize its history and remind alumni of the phrase one university president frequently used to describe the university: outrageous ambition.

My relationship with the university began more than 50 years ago, first for my education, then with my service and leadership in the organization. What began as a small, liberal arts college is now a university of many schools, centers, sports teams, health system, and more. I witnessed the outrageous ambition among each of those groups as well as individuals and the overall organization, and I am proud to have been a part of many advancements.

ONS also has outrageous ambition. Our founders envisioned an organization that would connect oncology nurses to support one another and develop resources for the profession. Always looking forward, they set the course for the Oncology Nursing Foundation, one of the largest nursing foundations, which has awarded more than $32 million to nurses in its history. They also set the course for the Oncology Nursing Certification Corporation, which not only collaborates with ONS but also the Association of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology Nurses and Board of Oncology Social Work Certification. The three corporations joined together to build a physical home for oncology nursing in Pittsburgh, PA.

The combination of a well-established base and a vision for the future has allowed outrageous ambition to flourish and trailblazing initiatives to define all three corporations. As attendees learned at the 2024 ONS Congress®, we have launched the Connie Henke Yarbro Oncology Nursing History Center. Connie and her late husband, Dr. John Yarbro, made a generous gift to establish the center and others have pledged support. It is unique for a professional member organization to house a history center, but it fits with our outrageous ambition. Our Center will inspire future generations of nurses and honor our rich heritage. Congress attendees also heard about the Foundation’s $8 million capital campaign to celebrate ONS’s 50th anniversary. The Foundation raised almost half of that before and during Congress, with attendees contributing more than $110,000 toward the goal.

The three Boards have worked together for the past four years to develop an understanding and vision of how together we make a profound impact on the cancer care environment and the profession. We are working on how best to title the enterprise. Oncology Nursing Enterprise seems to make sense, especially with the acronym of ONE. More will be coming about this.

The partnership of volunteers and staff, individually and united in our outrageous ambition, has served oncology nursing well and will continue to do so for many more. It is the ambition of a continued commitment to excellence and quality, to advancing and innovating, and to leading into the future. Thank you for being part of our outrageous ambition!