Tuesday, November 25, 2014

First Ever ASHA Convention: The People

2014 ASHA Convention
The highlight of the convention for me was meeting several incredible SLPs (and some SLPs to be!):
1.  Katie (@ak_echo):
I've communicated with Katie through email, Google+, instagram, twitter, and facebook. After several tweets back & forth, we were able to meet up at the beginning of the convention. When we ran into each other during the 2 days, it was like we were old friends.  She is an incredible young SLP whose techie know-how and application to therapy is inspiring. She.Is. Amazing!!!
2. Did you know ASHA has a Mentoring Program called Student to Empowered Professional (S.T.E.P.)? If you're accepted, you will be paired with a student. Communication is through e-mail, phone, or however you decide works for the 2 of you. There is a 3-6 month commitment, then it's up to you whether you continue the relationship. Last Spring, I was paired with a wonderful young lady from Saudi Arabia. The questions she asked were very mature, and we both learned a lot from each other.We have continued to keep in touch through emails & social media. Since Speech/Language Pathology is a relatively new field in Saudi, I suspect that she (and her classmates that I was privileged to meet) will bring Speech Pathology to the forefront in that region of the world.
She was the first person to come to our poster session. We spent quite a lot of time talking to her little group. They asked great questions, and are just like little sponges, soaking up as much information as they can! She and her classmates presented a Poster Session on Saturday.
3. The SLP Bloggers. I met most of them, and they are just amazing. Their enthusiasm for our field is contagious, and, talk about humble! They made me forget that I'm old enough to be their moms (or at least I'm pretty sure I am!)!!! I wish I could have hung out more with them, but I knew I needed to share them with other SLPs, and I had sessions to attend.
4. Speechy Keen SLP: How did I not get a picture with her????  I don't think I could have made it through the convention without her! Preparing for the convention was a bit overwhelming, but her pre-convention posts really helped me in all aspects. I overheard a woman in our hotel mention to another woman that she had just been to the best session. When she said the title, I just smiled, because it was Tara's Friday night session. The woman talked about the session with such excitement, and mentioned what a great speaker Tara was.

5. Activity Tailor: Again...how did I not get a picture with her? I know I'm over-using this word, but, she is AMAZING. When I first talked to her, I said her name, and she kind of looked at me (as if...am I supposed to know you?). When I gave her my real name, then my pseudo-names, it clicked. Will these SLPs ever truly know the impact they've had on so many SLPs in such a short amount of time?

6. Mai Ling Chan: Yet again...I didn't get a picture!  (What was I thinking???) She is THE Yapp Guru. I met her one day, went back the next, and she remembered me and my name.  If you haven't registered yet, click here to register. If you're considering buying an app, check this site first to see what other SLPs have to say about it. They give honest opinions about the apps.

I have to mention a couple of people who aren't SLPs, but were loads of fun:

1. Johnathon & his wife (I can't remember her name!!!) from Smarty Ears. I had to give both of them a gigantic hug for helping me with the problem I had with Custom Boards! They were GREAT!!!

2. How can I not mention Bill from Lessonpix? What a character! My co-worker & I could have talked to him all day long. I'm looking forward for him to do a remote demo for my special ed coordinator.

I am basking in the glow of meeting all of these incredible SLPs who are making a significant difference in our field! We've come a loooong way since I began working 30 years ago; I can't wait to see what's next!

Side note: Who knew that the presenters at ASHA Schools are by invitation only, and the sessions are 2-3 hours long? I had no idea, but am quite disappointed. If you've been, just how good is this convention? It would seem like they are missing out on some excellent, innovative things going on in the schools if that's the way it is operated. Please leave me feedback and let me know, or email me at tnslp29@gmail.com.

1 comment:

  1. I didn't know about the invitation only, but I really like the longer sessions. At this point I need the "meat" of a workshop, not just the "gravy." Having an opportunity to spend more time in sessions allows the presenter to go deeper and I learn so much more! I really like the schools conference.

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