I mentioned in an earlier post that I hope to use this blog to document my path to the ISTE Chair position. I haven’t talked about it much in the past few months though quite a bit has been going on. Our work on the board intermingles with our personal and professional lives, so I think it is natural for me to forget about the uniqueness of this opportunity.
Well, in the past week or two, much of that has changed. ISTE 2015 is right around the corner and with it come preparation for the board meeting, finalizing of session presentations, and the daunting task of managing our schedules.
This coming board meeting is like many of the others where we look at the Ends our organization is working towards achieving, but there is something special about the ISTE board meeting. During these meetings we get to talk about connecting with people and organizations at the conference. We make sure to meet with as many people as possible by making ourselves available, visiting with vendors, and of course holding meetings that are strategic as much informative. At no other time in the EdTech calendar do we, the EdTech community, actually get to come together and share en masse. The board talks about this at length in the run-up to the conference and in depth in the two days before in our meeting. If you’re going to be there, please make sure to talk to the Board, share your thoughts, and listen to what’s happening.
Of course, it is a time of excitement for me in particular because I get to see the fruits of ISTE’s work come together in such spectacle and scale from the front row. With this excitement though, comes a schedule of activities, appearances, meeting, and the occasional meal that is pretty substantial. There are multiple parts of my calendar that have parallel events where I am required to be in two places at once…and I am not even Chair yet.
As I write this, it sounds negative and exhausting. The latter is true, but the former is not. Those mountains of meetings provide me as a swath of EdTech professionals that go far beyond the scope I really expected.
We will talk with
- Local district leaders
- ISTE volunteers
- Corporate members
- US Department of Education representative
- International Ministers of Education
- Policy makers working across continents
- EdTech gurus
- Social media stars
- Affiliate leaders
- Young Educators
- EdTech Entrepreneurs
- Non-ISTE contacts from around the world
- Old friends
- New friends
- And more and more and more
It’s thinking about these connections and this concentrate passion for improving learning through resources that gets me pretty jazzed for our ISTE work, the conference itself, and my role within it. Just don’t ask to look at my calendar…I don’t want to make you feel sick.
And lastly, I am working on my presentation. Only one this year as my time is limited, but I must say I am proud of it. I get to talk about sharing your spark in an ISTE Ignite session. This is where I get to talk my excitement about the field and about what ISTE does and talk about it without referencing ISTE or the field. Right now, I am sharpening my message and my deliver a bit so hopefully people in the audience give that push to encourage their colleagues and themselves to open up and share. To steal from Sheryl Sandberg, I am hoping to spark a little EdTech LeanIn.
Now off to a few more Skype calls and googledocs.
I hope reading this sparks an interest in someone at ISTE to come up and talk with my board compatriots or me. But honestly, writing this was a bit more intentioned for me than for others and it has gotten me even more excited and I can’t wait to get to Philly.