Checking phone messages. “Hi Anne, this is Caryl Tickner from HAPS. I’d like to talk with you about running for a position on the Board…” Hmmm, Really?
I sort of fell into teaching as a second career around 18 years ago now (can it really be that long?). My colleague at the time introduced me to HAPS, and I attended my first annual conference in Portland, Oregon in 1996. Like many of you, I was immediately hooked. What a great way to learn how to teach from so many experts, and better yet, to make lifelong friends who were as passionate about the human body as I was (and also great fun to hang out with). I was a dedicated HAPSter, but running for Western Regional Director on the Board of Directors? Why would they even ask me? What could I possibly have to contribute?
According to our P&P, (which I learned stood for Policies and Procedures, our guideline manual), a Regional Director’s duties include:
- Serving as a voting member on the Board of Directors for a two-year term, and along with other Board members, establishing and managing the policies and affairs of the Society.
- Serving as the representative of a HAPS Region, acting as a liaison between his/her constituency and the Board of Directors.
- Promoting increased involvement of the region’s membership in the activities of the Society.
- Communicating with his/her constituency via email at least once annually.
- Serving as a member of the Membership Committee and the Regional Conference Committee to promote local and regional conferences in his/her respective regions with the goal of soliciting one such conference per two-year term.
- Attending Board of Director meetings held in mid-year and in conjunction with the Annual Conference, the Annual General Meeting held in conjunction with the Annual Conference and any Regional Conferences in their region for the purpose of welcoming attendees and promoting membership in HAPS.
I am now in my last year as the Western Regional Director, having been re-elected to a second (and final) term. Getting involved with the leadership of HAPS has been a wonderful experience. There’s much that goes on “behind the scenes” to keep it running smoothly that I would have never known about, had I not been on the Board. And considering that we only have two paid positions (Executive Director and Business Services), this organization of 1700 members is, and always will be, run by a dedicated, ever-changing group of volunteers. I’ve had the opportunity to meet even more talented, creative A&P instructors as a representative at conferences, and been able to promote HAPS to potential new members. Being on the Board has given me an opportunity to give something back to this fabulous organization that embraced me and mentored me as a new faculty member 18 years ago, and whose members continue to inspire me to become a better A&P instructor.
So if you ever get “the call”, I hope that you will consider saying yes; because what I’ve learned over these past three and 1/2 years is that we all have something to contribute, and I can honestly say that I’ve gotten more from this experience than I ever thought I would.