I love attending conferences. I wish I could attend more during the work week, and as part of my day job, rather than on weekends in my free time, but I go to them because they provide so much. My attendance at this weekends #appsu CT summit was even more valuable than some of the others I’ve attended this year.
First, it was hosted by a friends of mine. David, a member of my GTA cohort, invited me to join the amazing team of lead presenters, many of whom I follow on social media. And Marek, a friend I met through David, worked with us on the Google EDU on Air this Spring. There’s something to be said about working with your friends. There a sense of respect, and a lack of anxiety that I felt, which is quite different from many other conferences I attend.
Second, the schedule afforded presenters to actually attend sessions without feeling stressed or rushed. Computers were provided for those few that had issues. A great variety of session were tailored to fix every attendee’s need. And I can’t forget to mention the food. Easily, this conference had one of the best spreads I’ve ever had the pleasure of sampling, aside from eating at a Google office!
Third, the presenters really got along! We teamed up to offer personalized assistance to attendees during down time, we joined one another as audience members in each other’s sessions, we socialized after conference hours, and made some great connections that helped me forget I was “working” rather than playing! With such busy schedules, most of us have little down time these days, and getting to relax and have fun with like-minded souls was truly an amazing part of this trip!
Lastly, the effort and care that every single person put forth made the CT Apps University Summit one I will never forget, and one I hope to attend annually. Thank you new edtech friends for presenting and teaching me some new tools/skills, thank you attendees for taking timeout to learn and participate with me, and thank you David and Marek for making a successful conference I am sure to tell everyone about!