Authored by Katya Koubek, VATESOL Teacher Education SIG Leader
VATESOL is excited to bring a SETESOL conference to Virginia on October 12- 15 this year! VATESOL is among 11 states that are part of SETESOL. These states are Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. Last time our organization had an honor to bring this conference to Virginia was in 2011. As a member of VATESOL Board of Directors, I would like to share my top 5 reasons to attend this year’s SETESOL conference in Richmond, Virginia.
1. Learn from experts in the field
There is nothing more exciting than learning about the latest research and instructional practices from educational experts in the field whether these are professors, administrators, exhibitors, or teachers. This type of learning is exhilarating to one’s mental health and brain and serves as a catalyst for change in instructional and methodological practices. Three days of the conference will surely enrich everyone with new skills and knowledge on how to support multilingual learners in various educational contexts.
2. Network by meeting old and new colleagues
Since this conference is going to attract attendees from the above-mentioned SETESOL states, there will be plenty of opportunities to meet new colleagues and reconnect with your old friends. By interacting with like-minded individuals, there is a greater chance that new projects and ideas will be generated and potentially pursued, thus contributing to the dissemination of new research and evidence-based practices.
3. Exchange ideas on what matters the most to you
While attending a conference is fulfilling in its own way, presenting and sharing ideas with others on one’s latest projects is even more exhilarating. Having an opportunity to hear others’ opinions on your projects stimulate further thinking that can potentially increase the quality of these projects and provide avenues for their dissemination.
4. Boost your resume and invest in yourself
Whether you need professional credits to maintain your license or are required to demonstrate your professional development on your annual review, this conference can cover it all! By attending and/or presenting at this conference, you are taking a step further to enhance your resume or CV, which also serves as a good sign to your employer that you are willing to expand your knowledge, learn, and improve.
5. Visit a new place and have fun!
It is essential to decompress and relax while attending conferences! These professional development opportunities while brain-stimulating can be overly exhausting. Therefore, it is paramount to take time for yourself to have fun exploring a new place, enjoying a nice meal, or just strolling along the streets of a new city. Having this SETESOL conference in Richmond guarantees that everyone will find something to enjoy in the capital of Virginia – whether you are interested in shopping, eating out, or sightseeing.
In sum, these are my top five reasons for attending the SETESOL conference in Richmond, VA this fall. The bottom line is whatever your reasons are to attend this conference, we would like to extend a warm welcome to you and your colleagues and to ensure that your stay with us is memorable and rich with new knowledge, skills, and professional opportunities. On behalf of the VATESOL Board of Directors, I hope to see you at SETESOL on October 12 -15 this year!