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Kevin’s Unofficial Guide to the HAPS Annual Conference | SCRIPT

by Kevin Patton

TAPP Radio Bonus Episode TRANSCRIPT

Kevin’s Unofficial Guide to the HAPS Annual Conference

The A&P Professor podcast (TAPP radio) episodes are made for listening, not reading. This transcript is provided for your convenience, but hey, it’s just not possible to capture the emphasis and dramatic delivery of the audio version. Or the cool theme music.  Or laughs and snorts. And because it’s generated by a combo of machine and human transcription, it may not be exactly right. So I strongly recommend listening by clicking the LISTEN button provided.

Bonus Episode Transcript

Kevin’s Unofficial Guide to the HAPS Annual Conference

Kevin Patton:                     I learn so much at these things.

Aileen:                                  Welcome to the A&P Professor, a few minutes to focus on teaching human anatomy and physiology with host Kevin Patton.

Kevin Patton:                     This is a special bonus episode with Kevin’s unofficial guide to the HAPS Annual Conference.

Kevin Patton:                     Welcome to a special bonus episode. I brought in our announcer Aileen.

Aileen:                                  Hi dad.

Kevin Patton:                     And our whole A & P professor podcast orchestra. Ha-ha, well thank you Andres Rodriguez, who is our musical director.

Aileen:                                  Hey, is this gonna take long?

K

Kevin's Guide

evin Patton:                     Okay, okay. That’s enough. And we have a very special topic for you this time. It’s Kevin’s unofficial guide to the HAPS Annual Conference. And we’ll get to that in a moment. But I do wanna mention that being a bonus episode, you get bonus minutes. This episode is a little bit longer than the usual 20 to 30 minutes. Not too much longer, but a little bit longer, so bear with me. If you’re in an app that shows you the show notes with active hyperlinks, you can link to some of the resources that I’ll mention. And also, I wanna mention that there are timestamps in there, so if you wanna jump ahead to different parts of this, it’s fine. And well, okay, here I’m adding bonus minutes just with this intro. So, let’s go ahead and get goin’!

Kevin Patton:                     Welcome to Kevin’s unofficial guide to the HAPS Annual Conference. And the first bit of advice that I wanna pass along is, you do not really need a guide to the Annual Conference. You’re gonna do just fine, just walking in without any prior knowledge of what’s going on. And just have an open mind and an open heart, and you’re gonna have a great time. And if you get lost anytime, just ask those of you around you. Because they’ve been in the same boat at some point. And we’re a very collegial group, so you’ll have no problem whatsoever.

Kevin Patton:                     Another thing I wanna mention before we get too far here is, that this is a completely unofficial guide, as the title states. The HAPS leadership doesn’t know I’m doing this. This is completely underground. This is totally on my own. It’s sort of like one user’s review and tips from the outside, looking in. Sort of from the outside, and I kinda wanna get into why I think I’m the right person to give any advice to anyone coming to a HAPS conference for the first time, about what’s going on. Well, I’ve been going to every single HAPS Annual Conference since 1990. So I do have some experience with the HAPS Annual Conference over the years. Not only that, but I hosted the conference in St. Louis in 1995, and was on the host committee and the update organizer for the Annual Conference in 2005, also in St. Louis. And I’ve had a lot of other leadership roles and committee roles and HAPS related to both the Annual Conferences and the regional conferences. So, been around for a while, and I’ve been on the inside as well as the outside, as well as the middle. And, so, I think I’ve learned a few things over the years. And maybe some of the advice I give you will fit with your own approach to things, and it might help you along a little bit.

Kevin Patton:                     Depending on when you’re listening to this, how far ahead of the Annual Conference you’re hearing this, you wanna make sure that you register. And if you’re listening to this way in advance of the Annual Conference, you may notice when you go on their website to register, that there is an early bird discount. It’s really important, I think, to get in on that early bird discount. No matter who’s paying for it. Whether its your institution, or coming out of your own pocket, or it’s from grant money, or whatever. Money saved is money saved. So, take a look at that.

Kevin Patton:                     It also helps the organizers to know, early on, approximately how many people they might think are coming. So if there’s early interest shown, that is gonna help a lot with planning. And the whole experience goes better for everybody when that happens. And the website, if you’re not already aware of it, is hyperlinked in the show notes, and on the episode page for this special bonus episode. Or, just remember hapsweb.org. That’s h-a-p-s-w-e-b dot org. And that’s how you get to the HAPS website. And just click on events, and the annual conference, and so on, and you get to the right place.

Kevin Patton:                     In all of my comments here are directed to just your typical attendee. Exhibitors are very welcome and also become part of what’s happening at the conference. And workshop presenters and update speakers, and so on, are also very much a part of the heart and the life of what’s going on at a HAPS conference. But, there are particular guidelines and policies related to those roles that you might wanna take a look at. And that is also at the conference part of the hapsweb.org website. So make sure you look at those.

Kevin Patton:                     One other thing I wanna mention while we’re talking about registering early is you also wanna get your hotel booked early. Because only a certain number of hotel rooms are blocked. And it’s not a huge number, because we kinda … The HAPS organization is kinda on the hook if they don’t all get booked. And that’s never really been much of a danger, but the organization likes to be conservative in that regard. So if you want the conference rate, make sure you book early so you can get the conference rate.

Kevin Patton:                     Another thing that I wanna get into very briefly is that you do wanna get to know the HAPS staff. Feel free to call ’em or contact ’em through the website, and ask any questions that you have ahead of time. They’re all very friendly and very helpful. And they’ve heard a lot of the very simple questions before, so don’t think that you’re the first one to ask something that you think should be obvious, but you just can’t figure it out. So, go ahead and do that.

Kevin Patton:                     One sort of unofficial member of the HAPS staff that you’ll hear people talking about, is somebody named Skelly. Now, who in the world is Skelly? Well, Skelly is a cartoon character. Skelly is a cartoon skeleton. And Skelly is sort of the mascot of each HAPS conference and sort of takes on the persona of the host community and host group for each different HAPS organization. But, people talk about Skelly as if it’s an actual person. And so if you’re confused about who that is, it’s not really real. But I guess, to a lot of people it’s real enough.

Kevin Patton:                     So I have a few tips for things to sort of think about before the meeting. And probably the biggest one is that there’s usually an app associated with each annual conference. It’s an app that you can download onto your Apple iOS device or your Android device. There’re different versions of that app. Be sure to download the app and start looking around on the app, because you’re gonna find that it’s going to be a very useful tool, both before and after the conference. But also, during the conference can be very, very useful. If nothing else if for communication. But also, there’re features in there to help you sort of plan out and pick what workshops you’re going to. You can schedule your own events, or if you’re meeting a group of people for lunch or dinner, or something like that. You can schedule it in there, and it’ll give you a reminder. Lots of different things.

Kevin Patton:                     And I just looked at my app before I start recording this episode, and even though it’s before the conference is actually started. Actually, quite a while before the conference actually starts. And there’re already people that have downloaded the app and registered and are sending messages to one another. There are first timers that are saying hello. There are old timers, like me, saying hello. And it’s a good way to kind of, again, get in the mood for the HAPS conference beforehand. And if there are any heads-up about anything, maybe, I don’t know, traffic issues, airport issues, something going on in the hotel that you wanna be aware of before you arrive. Then, check on the app and you’ll probably have people buzzing about those different things that might be useful to you. There’s also a lot of info on the website that I just mentioned a little while ago.

Kevin Patton:                     One of the things you can do on the app that I recommend is read up on the update speakers. Just to get a feel for what they’re about and what their topics are and what they’re specialized in. So once again, you’re kinda getting in the mood of things, you know what to expect, and you’re gonna be prepared. There might be a topic or two that you kinda wanna read up on a little bit before you get to the meeting, so that you are very well prepared for that update speaker. And maybe come reared with some questions for that speaker, if there’s time for those at the end of the Update Seminars. And I’ll tell you about the updates and how that’s all laid out in the schedule in just a second.

Kevin Patton:                     Another thing you can do in the app is get familiar with the workshops. You can also download the update speaker information and the workshop information from their website and either print it out or save it as a PDF, or whatever. And start to look through them. ‘Cause you wanna get familiar with those, so you, at the last minute, aren’t choosing from this huge number of different workshops, and are like, “which one am I gonna go to?” And so on. And you wanna start narrowing down your choices. Because it’s … My experience has been, it is very difficult to pick one. Because there’s always so many really great workshops going on at the same time. And yet, this is real life. We haven’t tamed time travel. So, we really do have to pick one.

Kevin Patton:                     Now something that I advise, and you can take this information or leave it. Well, you can take this whole podcast or leave it, if you want, obviously. But one bit advice that I would like to give you is, bring some business cards. That’s one thing that most people forget to do. But … And those people that do bring business cards often forget they have them in their pocket or purse or pack or whatever, so that they can actually give them out. I think I handy way to do it, the way I usually do it is throw a bunch of ’em in the little pouch that’s usually in the back of the name tag you get when you sign in and get your registration materials at the beginning of the conference.

Kevin Patton:                     And the reason you want those is, especially when you’re interacting with exhibitors, they might say, “well I’ll send you a sample of this.” Or, “I’ll contact you about that. I’ll track down the answer,” or yeah, “the answer to the question that you have, and I’ll get back to you.” And instead of writing all that information down, you can just hand them your business card and it’s all there. And like to use it for networking. That’s one of the most valuable things that I get out of HAPS. One of the many valuable things I get out of HAPS is all the many friends that I make and colleagues that I know that … They might be an expert in this or that, and a few years down the road I might think, “wow, I remember running into that person who’s really good at this. I think I’m gonna drop ’em an email or give ’em a call,” or whatever, “and see if they can help me out with this or steer me in the right direction.” And if I have their business card, if I’ve asked for their business card and gotten it and saved it after the meeting, now they’re part of my contact list. And it’ll be easy to track them down.

Kevin Patton:                     Another question I get a lot from people who are getting ready for their first HAPS annual conference is, what to pack. And let me tell you that if you’ve been to other scientific meetings before, the atmosphere at HAPS is a lot more casual. At least, that’s been my experience. So, a lot of people will tell you, “well, it’s business casual.” And business casual is just fine. You’ll feel very comfortable and you’ll fit right in if you’re business casual. But I know a lot of people who come in their flip flops and shorts and their t-shirt, and they fit in just fine, too.

Kevin Patton:                     And there are other people who come with a sport coat on, sometimes I wear a sport coat, only ’cause sometimes it’s a little chilly in the hotels. So for the first couple of days that are in the hotel, in the exhibit halls, and Update Seminars and so on, you might see me in a sport coat. Usually with a t-shirt underneath it, but a sport coat nonetheless. Some people come really dressed up. Maybe a suit and a tie, or a really dressy dress. And that’s okay too. You’ll fit right in, and no one will look a scant to you. And my advice is just use your own style judgment. Whatever you’re most comfortable in. No matter what you do, unless it’s like really, really extreme, is gonna be okay. So, I think the norm is business casual, more or less. Maybe that should be our motto.

Kevin Patton:                     One other thing I wanna mention while you’re packing things for the HAPS conference is leave room for extra stuff in your luggage. Because sometimes there’s gonna be some great attendance price that you win and it’s … I don’t know, Grey’s Anatomy, which is, oh my gosh, you’re probably gonna have to pay extra for that luggage. But, other than that, there’re probably gonna be some things. Maybe you’re gonna pick up some t-shirts. Maybe you’re gonna pick up some items from the vendors. Maybe you’re gonna pick up some souvenirs. Maybe somebody’s gonna trade you some things. Maybe you’re gonna pick up some materials at one of the workshops and wanna bring it back. So, I would always leave a little extra room in your luggage.

Kevin Patton:                     Also, be prepared for any kind of weather. Because we’ve seen all kinds of extremes of weather at the HAPS conference, except snow. I don’t think we’ve ever had snow. But, as soon as I say that, it’s gonna happen. So, do bring lots of different kinds of layers that will help you out in any kind of weather.

Kevin Patton:                     Also, pack your historic HAPS wear. If you’re not a first timer, and you have a t-shirt, a hat, a lapel pin, any kind of HAPS wear, that you have from a prior conference, bring it with you. Because people like to see that. As a matter of fact, it’s a good conversation starter. Where, I’ve been stopped when I’ve had a t-shirt on from a previous convergence. And they’ll stop me and say, “oh, I went to that conference. That was so good, and this and that. And did I see you there? And blah, blah, blah.” And oh man, it really is something. It really is a part of the culture of HAPS to do that sort of thing. And as a matter of fact, there’s a group of regular attenders who often bring t-shirts from their home institution to the conference to trade with other people who have also brought t-shirts. So, do that. It’s another good networking opportunity. And it’s kinda fun to trade t-shirts from other institutions with people that you’ve made friends with at HAPS.

Kevin Patton:                     So getting to sort of the overall organization of the meeting in terms of how it’s laid out, time wise. Ordinarily, on the first day … Well actually, before the first official day of the conference, there will be an evening reception. An opening reception. And a lot of people, especially people like me who are introverted, will kind of skip that and think, “well I don’t know anybody yet, so I’m not gonna go to the opening reception. What’s the point of that?” But do that. Please, do that. Because that’s the time where all of us old timers in HAPS shake the hands of the first timers and second timers, and so on. And try to make you feel welcome. And it’s where we see our old friends from many years on, coming back to another HAPS conference. And we get to visit with them, and so on. There are alumni groups, even, and so on. And kind of tend to gel and move around in the meeting, and so on. So definitely don’t skip the opening reception.

Kevin Patton:                     Then, usually the first two full days of the conference are dedicated to the Update Seminars. So we’ll have an Update Seminar, an extended break, another Update Seminar, extended break. And of course there are lunches in there. And there’s also a business meeting thrown in there, and I’ll get to that in a moment. So that’s when we all sort of meet in one gigantic room and have a special guest speaker present something. And you’ll already be familiar with those topics, because you’ll have read through them already from the materials that are available on the HAPS website or on the HAPS app. And that’s the first two days.

Kevin Patton:                     Oh, also in between there, during the breaks, you’ll wanna go to the exhibit hall, because the vendors will be set up there. And I’ll talk about them in a little bit, as well.

Kevin Patton:                     And then, the next two days, usually, are often at the hostitution, so there’s usually buses set up to shuttle us out there. Or you can go on your own. And that’s where the workshops are. So they’ll be on campus somewhere. And there’ll be short breaks in between, and then an extended lunch break. And I’ll talk more about what goes on in those lunch breaks later, too.

Kevin Patton:                     So, opening reception, two days of seminars, two days of workshops, and there might be an optional field trip on an extra day afterward. But that’s not really the main part of the meeting. And I’ll talk about the field trips in a moment, as well.

Kevin Patton:                     So some advice for during the meeting. So, during the meeting, there is going to be a lot of general networking. And I really, again, wanna emphasize that that is one of the key values of attending the HAPS conference. Is, that all of the people you’re going to meet and interact with, that’s really what is going to give you the new life that you will have from attending a HAPS annual conference. And so, definitely go to the opening reception.

Kevin Patton:                     Another thing you don’t wanna skip, if you are first timer, then the very first morning, before the first Update Seminar, there is a scheduled first timers breakfast. And you’ll be told all about that when you register and there’ll be information in your registration pack. And definitely show up to that. I and other Presidents Emerita are hosts of that. Now, we’re getting so many first timers at every meeting that other HAPS leadership has stepped in to help with us. Because we like to have one old timer at every table of first timers, so that we can welcome you personally and also answer any questions you have going into it. And so you’ll know an old timer, at least one old timer for the first time. You’ll have met a whole bunch of us at the opening reception, but you’ll get to know us better at that breakfast. And it’s always good food. So, if for no other reason, show up for that. And not only that, but you’ll have met a bunch of the other first timers at that meeting. And get to know the other first timers, because something I’ve seen happen over time is, people kind of bond over when their first conference was. And they tend to form kind of a special, close relationship with people who were also first timers at their first meeting.

Kevin Patton:                     But if you’re a second timer, we now have seconds timers breakfasts, too. And so at the same time the first timers breakfast is going on, the second timers are there. I think it’s because so many first timers wanted to come back for the first timers meeting the second time around. But they have that, and don’t skip that either. Because it’s a good time to reconnect with your old friends, strengthen those bonds from last year when you were all first timers together, and the committee chairs and other HAPS people are very active in what’s going on behind the scenes in HAPS. And you’ll be able to connect with them and get even more of your questions answered.

Kevin Patton:                     One other thing I wanna mention while you’re doing networking, just in general while you’re at the meeting is, don’t be shy about tagging along with people. If you don’t have anybody to go out to lunch with, and you see a group forming, say, “hey, you guys going to lunch? Mind if I tag along?” That happens all the time. And it would be very unusual for them to tell you not to. Now, occasionally there is, so don’t get your feelings hurt if they’re gathering certain people together for some kind of business meeting. Either HAPS business, or business with a vendor, or some other organization they belong to, or something like that.

Kevin Patton:                     ‘Cause in one of my schools, we actually, in the past had some of our faculty meetings, our A&P faculty meetings during lunch at a HAPS conference. And so, yeah, we don’t really want other people coming along for that, because you would find it boring. And we would kinda feel uncomfortable talking about certain things that are going on in our own program with people that aren’t in our program, already there. So that sometimes happens, but mostly not. And people’ll be friendly about it. They won’t shoo you away in a mean way. I’ve never seen that happen. I guess it could. But, I doubt whether that would happen. So don’t be shy about tagging along to lunch, dinner, going out for drinks or just going out for a walk, or whatever.

Kevin Patton:                     And ask around if you want somebody to go on a morning run with you, or something like that. If any of you are interested in tai chi, hit me up for that, ’cause I’d be happy to share my tai chi time … Well, I’ll share chai tea with you too, if you want. But, I’ll share tai chi time with you, if you wanna do that. I love to do tai chi with other people. Especially those that are doing a different style of tai chi than me. Or even if you don’t know a style, or you do. Or if you wanna learn a few steps in tai chi, I’ll teach you some.

Kevin Patton:                     And usually, there’s a participant list that’s part of the registration packet. Dig that out and have it handy. That’s what I always do. And as I meet new people, I check them off the list and it helps me reinforce for me, who I’ve met. ‘Cause I have a really hard time remembering names. I remember faces really well, but remembering names not so well. And then, going beyond that and remember what school are they from, or what company are they from, what part of the country, or what country are they from. And so, I can double check all of that and say, “is this you? Cause I wanna check off on here. This is you? Okay, good. That’s you.” And then at the end of the meeting, I can kinda look and see all the new people that I’ve met.

Kevin Patton:                     And that’s the next bit of advice I have. And that is commit to meeting as many new people as you can. In the very early days of HAPS, some of the people that grabbed a hold of me and sort of shepherded me around and invited me out to lunch and so on, said, “well, you are one of our new people for this year.” And I’m like, “what?” And they said, “yeah, every year each one of us in a little group that finds each other at the HAPS conference, we always commit that each one of us will find at least one new person to bring along and invite along to what we’re doing. And introduce to other people in our little group so that they will have some early connections.”

Kevin Patton:                     Now there’re so many things going on at HAPS conferences that we don’t really need to do that anymore. But I enjoy doing it. So, if I’m coming up to you and saying, “wow, you’re a first timer! I’m gonna check you off on my list”, and so on, you know what I’m doing. I’m meeting my commitment to meet as many new people as I can at every meeting. So you might wanna try that. It’s a fun thing to do when you’re at the HAPS annual conference.

Kevin Patton:                     Now, when you’re at Update Seminar, the exhibit hall will be open. And a lot of people who’ve never been to a HAPS meeting don’t realize that the exhibit hall is not just for exhibitors. Of course, there are vendors set up there. And it’s a good time to interact with the exhibitors, various textbook publishers and equipment suppliers and lab suppliers. And oh, just all kinds of different exhibitors. A lot of surprises every year. People’re like, “wow, I never knew that that was available, that’s great.” Sometimes they even have like little mini demonstrations and workshops going on in the exhibit hall. But everybody goes to the exhibit hall whether they wanna go to the exhibits or not. Why? Because that’s where everybody gathers. It’s really the gathering place. Maybe we should call it that instead of the exhibit hall. It’s the gathering place. And there are extended breaks that, with things going on like refreshments and different things, where people really are drawn to that area. And so you’ll see lots of conversations going on. And a lot of people moving from one conversation to the next, and so on.

Kevin Patton:                     So I strongly encourage you to go into the exhibit hall even if you don’t wanna see any of the exhibits.

Kevin Patton:                     So getting back to those Update Seminars, you definitely want to bring something that you can take notes with. Now, the usual policy is, and you’ll wanna check this at each HAPS annual conference, but the usual policy is that you cannot take photographs or make recordings or anything like that during the seminar, unless you have prior permission from the speaker. And there are many reasons for that, but I think one good reason not to do that is everyone behind you will hate you. No, they won’t hate you. But they’ll be annoyed by you, because you’re gonna be standing up with your iPad trying to take pictures of every darn slide. So if you want copies of the slides, then contact the speaker and ask them to send you a copy. Ordinary, HAPS does not make that available on the HAPS website. But, they do give you the contact information for the speaker, so you can contact the speaker and get that. But don’t be taking pictures during the Update Seminar. That’s my advice. You can make your own choice, but my advice is don’t do it. And that’s usually the policy, that you’re not supposed to do it.

Kevin Patton:                     So that’s the Update Seminars. And then usually it’s the morning of the second full day of the Update Seminars. Before the Update Seminars start, there will be a HAPS fun run and walk. And there are a lot of people who like to run, like to walk, like to walk around the city a little bit. And there will be a course laid out, and we also use it as a fundraiser. So, toss in a couple of bucks or so, if you want to. If you don’t want to, that’s fine, too. And go ahead and join folks for the HAPS fun run. And then, we have usually, again, on the second day of Update Seminars, the first slot isn’t an Update Seminar, but it’s a HAPS business meeting. And I really strongly encourage you to go to the HAPS business meeting for a couple of reasons.

Kevin Patton:                     One is, you get to hear about all the exciting things going on in HAPS, often from the people who are running those things. So if you wanna know more about the HAPS exam, or about the HAPS learning outcomes, or about this committee or that committee, or this new project going on, or that new project going on, this is where it all gets updated. And you really get a good feel for what’s going on behind the scenes and in terms of the various supports and resources available from HAPS. And there also are occasionally decisions to be made by the members. Like, maybe a change to the bilaws or some new project that needs membership approval, or something like that. So you’ll wanna be part of this dynamic organization that is HAPS. So, don’t skip the business meeting.

Kevin Patton:                     Another thing that’s going on during those first two days are the poster presentations. And there are at least two reasons why you wanna spend some time looking at the posters.

Kevin Patton:                     One is, I’ve always learned new things. Many new things, looking at the posters. And so you get some great ideas at the posters. And the poster presenters are there to answer questions that you have. A lot of good networking going on. And again, this is a handy time to have those business cards ready and hand ’em out, so that you can make these connections that like, “would you please send me it? Here’s my card. Would you send me a copy of your poster? Would you send me a copy of whatever it is that you’re talking about in that poster?” And so on.

Kevin Patton:                     And that sort of leads to the second big thing, and that is all these great conversations that you have. Not only with the poster presenter, but then usually there’s all these side conversations that get struck. You might say to the person next to you, “oh yeah, I tried that once.” And then the other person, “well, really? What’s your experience with that?” And you have a new friend all of a sudden. And you probably wanna give ’em a business card. I oughta start a business making print-while-you-wait business cards at the HAPS conference. I seem to be a real big cheerleader for business cards. If you see me at the HAPS conference, please do introduce yourself and tell me that you listen to my podcast. And also, ask for my business card, I’ll give you one. And I’ll ask you for one.

Kevin Patton:                     Another big thing are those two days of workshops. And as I said before, I really encourage you to listen to what other people are saying about the workshops. Even, sometimes, I’m listening like on the bus, on the way to the campus. I’ll be asking people like, “hey, have you heard anything about this presenter, or that presenter?” Or I’ll be listening to other conversations going on nearby me and say, “oh really? You’re going to that? Why you going to that?” And they’ll say, “Oh, I’ve been to one of their other workshops and they’re fabulous presenters.” I’ll now know more. I’ll make a better, more informed choice than I would have otherwise. So, listen to what’s going on. And this is especially useful during lunch. During lunch, listen to what other people were going to and what they’re looking forward to, and so on.

Kevin Patton:                     And you get good feedback that way. And take some notes. Because I’ve learned some things at lunch that, “Oh man, that workshop is over. It’s too late for me.” And then I find out that person’s giving a similar workshop the following year. And I look through my notes and say, “Yep, that is the [inaudible 00:31:45] that I heard gives such great workshops, so I’m gonna go to their workshop this time.” Even if it’s a topic that isn’t of particular interest to me, I know they’re a good presenter, so I’m bound to learn something.

Kevin Patton:                     And oh, the other thing, and I’ve mentioned this before, is have a backup or two, or three backups. Because sometimes you’ll get to a workshop and there was a last minute cancellation because the person got sick, or they had a family emergency or something like that. Or you’ll find out that the room is so full they’re not letting new people in. And so you wanna know, right away, what you wanna go to next instead of flailing around and missing a whole session. So, have several backups available. Also … Or you might hear at the last minute that what you thought that workshop was about, is not really about that thing that you think it’s about. And you might think, “Oh man, I don’t really wanna do that. I wanna do something different”, you’ll have a backup handy.

Kevin Patton:                     And another thing that I’ve done before that can work really well is, if there’s a group of people that you’re sort of hanging out with, that you’re all from the same institution, or the same city, or you just like to hang out together, or whatever. And there are several workshops that you all wanna go to, you might wanna split it up, and say, “Well, I’ll go to workshop A, you go to workshop B, and third person go to workshop C, and see if there’s some extra handouts that you can grab. And learn what you can, take good notes, and then come back and we’ll regroup and we’ll teach each other what we learned, what we got out of it.” So that can help, if there’s more than one workshop you wanna go to, and you just can’t get to it.

Kevin Patton:                     And now is as good a time as any to mention Kevin’s Law about workshops. And about professional development in general. And that is, if you learn just one thing, that is very valuable to you, in the whole conference, then it’s worth it. And you can even apply Kevin’s Law of workshops, or Kevin’s Law of professional development to each part of a HAPS workshop, and you won’t be disappointed. If, in every workshop, I learn one thing; in every Update Seminar I learn one thing, then it will all have been worth it. ‘Cause it was all I had up. And you’ll have learned things so many ways at a HAPS conference. I mean, just even in casual conversations you will learn things. And I’m kinda well known among my friends for having a pocket full of index cards. And they’re always, again, if you run into me, and introduce yourself, then ask me about my index cards, and I’ll show ya. I even have a fancy little leather wallet for index cards that I keep in my pocket. ‘Cause I’m always learning new things, and if I don’t write ’em down, I forget ’em. So I walk out of every HAPS conference with a whole fistful, a whole deck of index cards that I can then go through after it’s over.

Kevin Patton:                     One other thing I’m gonna mention, while we’re talking about workshops is, usually on the workshop day, usually it’s the first workshop day, but that sometimes varies, there are committee meetings. And these committee meetings are open to all members. So if there’s a committee that you’re interested in the work they’re doing, or you might even have a passing interest in maybe someday joining that committee, go ahead and sit in on the committee meeting. You will be very welcome. And it’s often during lunch, so sometimes people will bring their lunch. It depends on how it’s scheduled in that particular meeting. Or sometimes it’s right after the lunch time. And go ahead and join in and see where the different committee meetings are being held. I strongly recommend you do that. Because at the very least, you’ll hear about what’s going on in a particular area of HAPS life.

Kevin Patton:                     Another thing I wanna mention while you’re at the meeting, and actually you wanna look into this before the meeting, is HAPS Institute. Also known as HAPS-I. And what HAPS Institute is, is HAPS’s professional development program, where you can get graduate college credit for courses that sometimes happen outside of the HAPS meeting, but there’re some HAPS-I courses that happen … At least part of them happens at the meeting. So there’ll be different special activities. Maybe a lunchtime activity, or maybe a workshop, or maybe a variety of other things going on at the meeting. So look into that. And you can get some graduate credit that might help with credentialing you need for your promotion or accreditation or whatever at your home institution. Even if you don’t need any of those things, those HAPS Institute courses are really fun and you really learn a lot. So I would recommend them just for that reason.

Kevin Patton:                     There’s also field trips that are often scheduled, depending on the location of the HAPS annual conference. And a field trip might be to something local, or it might be something where you kinda get bused out somewhere in the region of where the HAPS workshop is. But those are great learning opportunities, too. Sometimes not necessarily tied strictly to anatomy and physiology. Sometimes it’s a visit to the zoo, or a birding trip out to a wildlife area. Or a museum trip, or something like that. Often they do have to do with science in general. Not necessarily anatomy and physiology in particular. Sometimes they do. But even if they have nothing to do with science, or anatomy and physiology, they’re great networking opportunities. Some good friends I first met are on HAPS field trips. So, take a look at those and consider doing that if your schedule and your budget allows.

Kevin Patton:                     Then at the very end of the meeting … Oh, one thing I wanted to mention is, at the end of the Update days, the first two days, at the very end of the last Update, there’s kind of a little gathering, a little get together. But besides that, there’re also attendance prizes. And the attendance prizes are sometimes really, really nice. So, you probably wanna be there for the attendance prizes. And you’ll be given an attendance prize ticket, usually. Sometimes they do it where they just pick a name out of the hat from registered people. Sometimes it’s an official HAPS hat that they’re picking the names from. So different ways that that works. Ask at the registration desk when you check in about the attendance prizes and how you qualify for those. And you have to be there to win. If you’re not there, if you just walked out of the meeting, too bad. Or just walked out of the room, too bad. Because you have to be there to win, usually.

Kevin Patton:                     So, after the meeting is over, something that you probably wanna take some time to do, I haven’t always done it, but I’ve regretted it when I haven’t’ done it. And that is, I pull out that list of participants and I pull out all of those business cards that I’ve collected, and I go into my Linkedin account. And I start requesting Linkedin connections from those people. I go in and see who’s on Twitter. And I follow them on Twitter. I make sure that I get their email address and their phone number and so on, in my contact list. So I update my contact list. And then I take all of that information that I’ve gathered, and I organize it. And I get it into some kind of file. I have a whole file … Well actually, I have more than one file drawer. I told ya, I’ve been goin’ to these things since 1990. That was my first one, 1990 in Madison, Wisconsin. Gary Johnson was the organizer of that. And Gary Johnson, by the way, is still very active in HAPS. And he’ll be at a lot of the HAPS annual conferences. So if you run into him, introduce yourself and say, “Kevin said to introduce yourself because he’s the guy that got me going in HAPS.” Gary Johnson. Madison, Wisconsin.

Kevin Patton:                     Anyway, update that contact list and really tend to your network when you get back. Because that network is gonna be very valuable to you. So I hope I’ll see you at the next few HAPS annual conferences.

Kevin Patton:                     Just one more thing.

Aileen:                                  Hey, is this gonna take long?

Kevin Patton:                     The best way to listen to the A&P professor podcast, also known as Tapp Radio, that’s t-a-p-p, for the A&P professor, is to use the dedicated Tapp Radio app in your device. We call it the Tapp app. And it’s available for Apple iOS devices, and for Android devices. But if were to use a podcast app installed on your device, then you can just search for the A&P professor, and go ahead and subscribe. You can subscribe in Apple Podcasts, Spotify, iHeart Radio, Stitcher, Amazon Alexa, Overcast, TuneIn, oh man, there’s just so many different ones.

Kevin Patton:                     And I have instructions and even little buttons that’ll get you right to the appropriate service. If you go to theapprofessor.org and click on podcasts, and just go to the subscribe page. And it’ll walk you through it all.

Kevin Patton:                     I sure do appreciate your support.

Aileen:                                  The A&P professor is hosted by Kevin Patton: professor, blogger, and textbook author in human anatomy and physiology.

Kevin Patton:                     Opinions expressed in this episode are not necessarily the opinions of the producer.

Kevin Patton:                     Well, okay, they are my opinions. But I could change my mind at any moment.

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Last updated: October 23, 2019 at 19:55 pm

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