Having finally recovered from the lack of sleep at the 2016 NIRSA Annual Conference, it was a great time to remember why we do what we do and to recharge. Days and weeks can seem like the alligator feeding that happened with people scrambling around to get their little piece of the pie. So it is a pleasure to have a time to reconnect with colleagues and meet some new ones.
I was able to attend a few different presentations and hear how others run their special events, train students and operate their programs in general. It is easy to get caught up in “how WE do it” and so it is good to take a step back and see how else it could be done. Each school puts its own little twist and spice on things and we are a great field who luckily doesn’t mind sharing.
The Expo offered a great venue to be able to meet with the vendors of the field (and magazine editors) and put some faces to names. Unfortunately, I didn’t come out on top in the Hoop Shoot, but I certainly gave it my best effort. It also was incredibly amusing to watch some friends try out the new equipment, especially the rock climbing pieces.
The conference as a whole was simply a great place to recharge my batteries. I was able to spend some valuable time learning more about aquatics and the right angle to put an umbrella so you don’t get burnt too badly. Being able to kick back with some long time friends and take in the ambiance of log rolling and little kids screaming in the background reminded me that this is a pretty cool field to work in.