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Five Nursing School students will attend a conference in Washington, D.C., this week to learn about health care's place in the political world and how they can influence public policy. The seminar, sponsored by the American Nursing Association, will contain a series of lectures beginning on Thursday morning and running through Friday afternoon. Nursing professionals from all over the country will discuss the effects of politics on the health care field. "It will help open nursing students' eyes to the importance of public policy in their future careers," SNAP President Heidi Nebelkopf explained. "It is exciting that we will be with the leaders of nursing, such as the president of the ANA." The conference will be highlighted by a reception on Capitol Hill Thursday evening. The participants are expected to discuss their experience at the seminar with fellow nursing students at the University. Nursing senior Stephanie Rodriguez, one of the students going on the trip, said it is important that the students bring back the information to the other nursing students since it will supplement their previous study in the politics of nursing. "They don't teach a lot about this at the Nursing School," Rodriguez said. "A conference such as this allows students to learn more about an interesting aspect of nursing." The students have received funding for the entire seminar from two separate funds. The Nursing School is paying the registration fees and SNAP is paying for the hotel and transportation. Associate Dean and Director of Undergraduate Nursing Mary Naylor said the conference is an exciting opportunity and valuable experience for the students. "A major factor [of the seminar] is to try and examine how nurses can influence health care accessibility, quality, and cost," Naylor said. "We think this is very important.". The five students attending are: Nursing senior Nebelkopf, Nursing senior Rodriguez, Nursing junior Sheila Rossell, Nursing sophomore Diane Schretzman, and Nursing junior Leslie Sondeen. A sixth student may attend as well, depending on her schedule.

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