By: Marcia Shannon, IDL SIG Manager
Thoughts about Summit 2019
I am finally back in the groove after the Summit trip. During those recovery days, I was composing this article. Other attendees have written articles that review specific sessions. I am addressing, no, celebrating the power of connecting face to face with other technical communications professionals across industries, gender, age, experience, and schooling.
This was my fifth Summit. I discovered STC late in my career, but the eight years I have been a member have been the best. Why do I attend Summit? To gather with my “tribe” and to meet and socialize with the leaders and experts in our field. Summit was an intense learning opportunity and an intense social experience.
I had conversations that challenged my ideas and conversations where I could offer information. I attended sessions that filled gaps in my knowledge and led me to explore new ways to work. It was inspiring to be there to applaud the accomplishments of the achievers, who set us an example of “just do it.” It was energizing to explore the latest tech comm tools from major providers, such as Adobe and TechSmith.
During Summit breaks, we talked about all things tech comm without having to explain our passion to non-tech-comm colleagues. Making connections at Summit pushed me out of the job-created “lone writer” box. My strongest takeaway were the people who talked to me and listened to me, who validated my place as a tech comm professional.
A substantial number of speakers are members of this SIG. Throughout the next several months, Summit 2019 speakers will be invited to present their sessions to the IDL membership. Watch for the announcements and take advantage of this opportunity to hear these strong, articulate speakers.
It is not too early to begin planning to attend Summit 2020 in Bellevue, Washington. If your employer allocates funds for training, start building your case to use those funds for Summit. If, like me, you are an independent contractor, figure out how to work out a budget that includes saving for Summit. However you can make it happen, I believe you will find it worth your time and your money.
Marcia Shannon was assistant co-manager for the SIG in 2018, and transitioned to co-manager in 2019.