Future Professionals can now compete for the opportunity to present posters during the PRPS Annual Conference & Expo. This shows our association’s continued commitment to supporting students. As a student myself, I think this is a great addition to the conference! Not only do selected students receive a potential discounted rate on presentation day, they also gain valuable skills and experience.
I first attended the conference in 2017. LHU’s Student Recreation Society held an interest meeting to tell students more about the benefits, and while I was interested, it was my first semester as a recreation management major. I thought, “Maybe save it for next year.” However, my professor, Dr. Dombroski, pulled me aside and said, “Would you be interested in assisting with my presentation at the PRPS conference?” Three weeks into my first semester and an offer like this is given to me? I had to take it!
Of course, I was nervous. I stuttered and couldn’t keep my hands steady while we rehearsed, but when the time came, I felt my words coming out clear and steady. The nerves didn’t completely melt away, but I did it. Before college, if you told me I would speak at a conference, in front of professionals, some of whom had been working in the field as long as I had been alive, I would have laughed. Now, I see that presentation as ripping off a scary bandage. Public speaking is an attainable skill.
You may be asking how this relates to the poster presentations. Well, when Dr. Batty first discussed the idea with me, I felt a lightbulb click on above my head. Here is the chance for other students to have the same experience I did, but in a way that would be (hopefully) a little less nerve-wracking. This opportunity shows that PRPS continues to be committed to its student members.
Last spring, a handful of students presented research at the conference. It was great to see so many professionals stopping to connect with students and ask about their work! If you have a student or intern who has ideas you think should be shared, don’t hesitate: Encourage them to send in their poster topic for the chance to present.
Look for more details to come out in the conference and expo registration guide!