Student Affairs professional, educator, doctoral student, father, partner, friend.
One week ago, I came home from a fantastic week in sunny Southern California. I started off with a couple of intensive days at the University of California- Riverside participating in the Professional Standards Institute (PSI) and followed that up with four fabulous days at the Annual Conference and Exhibition (ACE) both sponsored by the Association of College and University Housing Officers-International (@ACUHOI -Follow them on Twitter!)
The PSI was the second institute that I’ve attended put on by ACUHO-I, the first being the Chief Housing Officers Institute in 2010. I can say without reservation that these two institutes have been among the best professional development events that I have participated in. While intense, the learning is unsurpassed and the connections among participants and with the faculty (who are AMAZING) really has been the highlight of both institutes for me. Many thanks to the faculty at PSI: Cindy Spencer, Paula Bland, Dima Utgoff, and Paul Jahr and also to the staff in housing and dining at UCR.
The next four days at ACE in Anaheim were a whirlwind and incredibly stimulating. In was terrific to connect with old friends and make some new ones, including putting names and faces together from the Twitterverse. I was constantly challenged at each turn with how I could take what I had learned or heard about and apply it to the work I do at EOU. Here are a few of the outcomes from what I learned-
Those are just the few things that I’ve had a chance to really process. There’s much more where those came from!
Perhaps best of all is how much these experiences served to reset my perspective. It had been a long year with some struggles. It is easy to get caught in the thick of thin things and lose sight of why we do this work. I feel like I’m getting my groove back now.
Why do you go to conferences? What are the biggest wins for you when you get home? How does connecting with colleagues from across the world/country/region help to reset your perspective?