The ACEN and OADN Announce a Partnership

ATLANTA, Dec. 5, 2017 – The board members of the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and the Organization for Associate Degree Nursing (OADN) made the announcement today that the two organizations have entered into a partnership. The goal of this partnership is to increase the benefits and the efficacy of the support network for associate degree nursing (ADN) programs and their students. While both the ACEN and OADN will continue to operate completely independently and will not gain any ownership interests, rights, or financial stakes in the companion organization, the constituents of each organization will see many benefits immediately:

Members of OADN will have direct access to assistance, advice, continuing education, and current best practices related to accreditation. Through the partnership there will be an increase in opportunities to learn and engage in the accreditation process for all associate degree programs reaching the important achievement of initial and/or continuing accreditation.

Faculty members associated with the ACEN’s accredited programs and OADN’s members can increase their skill development, teambuilding, and leadership through separate and joint programming offered by the ACEN and OADN, and will be able to more readily connect and network with the community of ADN program faculty throughout the United States.

Both the ACEN and OADN will be able to improve their outreach efforts to support ADN programs, and will be able to enhance and supplement their current professional development offerings, benefitting both the ACEN’s accredited programs and OADN’s members.

The partnership will facilitate ACEN accredited programs and OADN members access to timely and important information about academic progression, which will further advance the success of graduates from ADN programs.

Dr. Marsal P. Stoll, Chief Executive Officer for the ACEN, sees this partnership as another way for the organization to concretely carry out its mission. Says Dr. Stoll, “The ACEN has accredited associate degree programs since the inception of our agency in the 1950’s and the majority of ACEN-accredited programs are associate degree programs; currently 721 associate degree programs hold ACEN accreditation. This partnership with OADN is another way for the ACEN to fulfill its commitment of being a supportive partner for nursing education programs.”

ACEN is the largest accreditor of ADN programs and the only accrediting agency for ADN programs recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. OADN strongly supports accreditation as evidenced by a 2017 revised position paper [1] stating that “accreditation remains a constant, nationally recognized marker of educational quality and program outcome achievement.” OADN’s Chief Executive Officer Donna Meyer stated, “ADN programs are crucial to meeting the nursing workforce needs of our country. These programs are of the highest caliber and accreditation only reinforces this status. Additionally, non-accredited programs may be restricted from obtaining clinical placement sites, face decreased ability to obtain federal grant dollars, and impede the graduate’s ability to move forward in their education. The OADN Board of Directors believes strongly that working in partnership with ACEN we can increase the number of accredited ADN Programs.”

In support of accreditation and academic progression, OADN is one of the national organizations taking the lead in the new initiative on academic progression, the National Education Progression in Nursing (NEPIN) collaborative, partially funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. To learn more about the ACEN, programmatic accreditation and the benefits thereof, please visit For more information about OADN, the only national organization dedicated to associate degree nursing, please visit

[1] “Accreditation Position Statement,” OADN,