Sunday, March 14, 2010
As a graduate student in the Student Development Administration (SDA) program here at SU, we are always encouraged to spend time on our professional development outside of the classroom. With the help of the Graduate Student Council, I was able to attend the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators Conference (NASPA) in Chicago, Illinois.
At the conference I was able to connect with old and new colleagues, learn from peers across the country, attend valuable and informative sessions, and network for potential internship opportunities. I encourage everyone to seek out their professional organizations to improve their educational experience. Yes, the networking receptions can be awkward, but the relationships that you develop are extremely valuable. I spent four days at the conference and by the end of Day Two I was already recognizing faces and running into people that I had met.
Conferences can also provide unique opportunities. One of the keynote speakers this year was Dr. Condoleezza Rice, former US Secretary of State. She spoke to a room of Republicans, Democrats, Liberals, Conservatives, etc. as educators, not politicians. Whether you agreed with her or not, she touched you as a person. It was a great speech and a wonderful time in Chicago!
Brittany Wooten and Jessica Carter - College of Education