Upcoming Conferences: STEMtech & FACC

As the month of November approaches a lot is happening with different conferences and presentations on my agenda. One of the disappointments for November is that the first annual Social Media University was being canceled due to poor registration. This would have been a great event to have in Orlando – first because Orlando has some of the best weather in the country in November and it’s a great tourism area with lots of hotels, attractions, and other things to do. Hopefully in the future they will plan try to host this conference again with possibly a more robust agenda, lower registration cost, and larger educational presence.

Now onto the conference that I am attending in November:

The first conference, STEMtech, is being hosted by the League for Innovation in Community Colleges at Orlando’s Walt Disney Swan and Dolphin. Educators, industry leaders, and others will gather to discuss increasing student access into and success in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) majors and careers. The 2010 STEMtech will also help educators explore the strategic use of information technology to better serve their students, campuses, and communities. Over 400 sessions will cover everything from recruiting and retaining students for STEM-related programs to using information technology to improve organizational and student learning.

I submitted a proposal to present on two different topics and both were accepted.

The first concurrent session is Assistive Technology: Blending Accessibility with Availability to Promote Universal Design: Using assistive technology and universal design in an educational environment is the foundation to optimizing educational resources. The collaboration using assistive technologies at Valencia Community College has been vital in promoting success. Come learn more about a variety of hardware, software, and innovative practices inside and outside the classroom.

This session was actually selected as a STEMtech Summit for a 6-hour workshop on Sunday but was canceled just this week due to low registration for the extra $150 to attend a Summit. We have presented on this topic a number of times at a few different conferences and for our college’s Learning Day.

The second concurrent session is Millennials, Social Media, and Education: Connecting with Your Students. The millennial generation has grown up with technology, while companies scramble to grab their attention through social media. How can educators grab their attention? A study of this generation’s educational technology preferences reveals surprising results. The presenters share what they’ve learned about the millennial generation and the secrets to winning the attention of students on their turf using social media.

My co-presenter Lisa Macon and I conducted this presentation at the FAEDS conference in September as a trial run, it seems to go over very well and flow excellent. I am really looking forward to presenting at STEMtech with a variety of faculty interested in this topic around the nation. Hopefully we will see an excellent turn out with our Monday afternoon session. I believe this will be a hot topic among educators with the growth of social media.

Follow the STEMtech conference on Twitter at @2010STEMtech or hash tag #10ST

The next conference is the FACC Convention at the Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront. Yes, finally a FACC Convention away from Orlando. It will be nice to travel to another part of Florida representing Valencia as a delegate for this statewide organization. The convention will include, exhibits, diverse educational programs, informative membership and association-related meetings, exemplary practice presentations, recognitions and awards, excellent networking opportunities, and plenty of outstanding social events. Every year I enjoy getting together with colleagues from around the state both in a professional and social networking aspect.

I’ll be again presenting a concurrent session on the Millennials, Social Media, and Education: Connecting with Your Students. I’ll be also assisting with the social media of the convention, helping promote and share parts of the conference through a variety of social media, but mainly focused on Twitter. Twitter is usually the best social media tool to keep the conversation going throughout a conference. Anyone ready for a Tweet-up?

Follow FACC on Twitter at @facctally or hash tag #FACC61

I always enjoy sharing social media with fellow educators, including ways to use it in the classroom and professional networking. I look forward to having lots of good information to blog about after these two conferences.

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