December 2016 President's Corner
As 2016 comes to a close, I cannot help but reflect back upon the last two and a half years I’ve spent in graduate school at Pacific University and as an active member of the SAA. I learned early on that effective change can only occur if there is diligent action behind it; however, navigating the waters of change, as I soon came to realize, is far easier with a compass. Specifically, I speak of leadership growth and development, as these skills foundationally orchestrate and shape change. The leadership growth and development I have undergone throughout my service to the SAA has been invaluable and helped me influence change and strengthen the student voice in audiology in ways I never thought possible. The other members of the SAA Board of Directors (BOD) felt similarly; however, we realized that opportunities for student leadership growth and development, outside of becoming involved with the professional student organizations, are somewhat sparse. With this is in mind, the SAA BOD, during our strategic planning meeting in July 2016, decided to assemble an ad hoc committee with a specific aim to develop a student leadership conference that would launch at AudiologyNOW! 2017 in Indianapolis, IN. We are pleased to announce that this ambition will indeed become a reality in April 2017.
The Student Leaders in Audiology Conference (SLAC) will be the first of its kind to exist on a national level. It was created to provide an open and engaging opportunity for students to grow and develop skills in leadership unique to audiology so that they become active, contributory members to our already thriving professional community. The audience will be solely comprised of audiology students who have been selected through a rigorous application process to become future leaders and decision makers in the profession of audiology. Programming is set to include 3 featured sessions from current leaders in the profession, as well as break-out and interactive sessions specific to those topics and themes discussed during lecture. The SLAC will take place at AudiologyNOW! 2017 in Indianapolis, IN on Wednesday, April 5 from 1:00 – 4:15 pm in rooms 201-203 in the JW Marriott Hotel Conference Center.
I am thrilled to share this upcoming opportunity with the student membership and am pleased to announce that applications and a tentative agenda for the SLAC are now open and available online. Applications will be due Friday, January 15, 2017, and those applicants chosen to attend will be notified no later than Monday, February 15, 2017.
In closing, I leave you with the wise words of Mahatma Gandhi, renowned civil rights activist and moving orator, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” I hope you’ll all take advantage of the opportunity to develop the skills necessary to effectively influence change across the profession of audiology by applying to attend the SLAC, as the profession is depending upon our efforts to strengthen and enhance its voice on both local and national fronts. As I’ve said before and will likely say again, our time is now, so let us seize it.
I look forward to reviewing your applications for the SLAC and wish you all the happiest of holidays. Let the food comas commence!
See you in 2017!
Joshua Huppert, SAA President