I love attending conferences. I absolutely love them! I love meeting new people and reconnecting with colleagues. I love choosing which sessions I will attend and I love debriefing with people about the sessions they attended. I end each day feeling refreshed with a renewed sense of dedication to my profession. By the end of the conference, my free tote bag is filled with brochures, one-pagers, business cards, and scraps of paper with ideas.
I recently had the absolute pleasure of attending the Canadian Writing Centres Association Annual Conference at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology in Calgary. I was able to share my own research and learn about that of others. While there, my mind was filled with possibilities. It was refreshing to hear about the experiences of my colleagues and encouraging to know that I’m not alone in the challenges that I face on a regular basis. We had open conversations about the questions I have been asking in my head. While I don’t think I have the answers, it’s very reassuring to know there is a group of people who are asking the questions and trying to find answers with me.
To me, that is the benefit of working in a profession dedicated to students. We’re all in it together to figure out how we can best support the coming generations of leaders. My contribution might seem small some days but while I was sitting in a room of more than 100 people who work in the same field, I realized that the impact can be so much bigger than I could have imagined.