When I accepted the role of President-elect in May of 2019, I really had no idea what would transpire just a short 10 months later. Taking the stage to address our membership, being elected, conference in Normal…it all seems like a lifetime ago, and so….normal. Life has certainly changed for all of us, though, and so we now as an organization must change with it.
Before we talk about the future, though, I would be remiss if I didn’t address the past ten months and the incredible team of conference committee chairs who worked so hard to put together the 2020 conference. I don’t think I would have believed you if you would have told me that IACAC wouldn’t be hosting our conference this year. In some ways, before this occurred, it was truly unimaginable. Here we are though, it’s mid-May and we’re planning for a digital/virtual next few months. To the conference team – I know I have told you at multiple points how proud I am of you, but truly, you all did some excellent work. I’ve been joking with Pat and Amy that mine would have been the best/most successful conference to date, and while we laugh about it (in order not to cry!) I believe it to be true. Thank you for taking a risk with me and trying to change and re-imagine the way conference operates, and I am hopeful you all will continue to think outside the box for next year.
That brings me to now. May 1 wasn’t May 1, students are still in the midst of deciding their futures, AP testing drama, and daily, actually hourly, zoom meetings. This is not easy for any of us, but I am hopeful we will be meeting and operating in person soon. Until then, I’m working on us planning ahead trying to be proactive instead of reactive, and working hard to engage all our members and ensure they see the value in what IACAC provides. Our membership elected an incredible group of people to help push IACAC forward, and we have committee chairs in place who are digging in and doing the work to ensure our success. We can’t do this without you though. Yes, YOU! If you are reading this and feeling like you need a new challenge, you want to meet new people, or want to stretch your skills – IACAC has something for you. I talked about getting involved in the meeting on May 4th, and I meant it. We are only as strong as our members are, and I would strongly encourage you to consider getting involved. You can volunteer for one of our standing committees and/or a conference committee here. Please consider joining us in our work. If the past couple of months have taught us anything, it’s that we need to be flexible, forward thinking, and solution oriented as we consider the future of IACAC.
Should you ever have a question, concern, or feedback – I’m here. Feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org (after June 1st), or connect with me through my Providence info (email@example.com, 401-865-1077) I’m happy to take your feedback and hear more from you regarding IACAC. Do not be surprised if I try to loop you into getting involved – I’d be remiss if I didn’t, right?
As a final note before I transition into the President role, I want to say thank you. Thank you to Pat and Amy for their support, guidance, and mentorship through this, to the IACAC staff who have been invaluable in their hard work and efforts to forge this new path, the IACAC Executive Board for their support, and my conference team. Lastly, to the mentors and friends who have listened to me talk about ALL the IACAC conference things this past year – you’re the best, I’m sorry, but thank you, so much.
We will be chatting again soon enough, and you’ll be hearing more from me soon about our upcoming plans. Until then, stay safe, healthy, and well. I can’t wait to see you all soon.