HAPS Leadership (#28): Changing of the Guard

On the road again!
On the road again!

Another annual HAPS conference has come and gone. Attendees have scattered back to their homes, either teaching, writing, relaxing, or keeping up with other activities to keep them busy during the summer. For the HAPS leadership, it’s no different.

As you are aware, we had elections this spring for several new positions on the Board of Directors. We also saw changes in the Steering Committee, as some chairs rotate off and others rotate on. Officially, the changes occur as of July 1, but we’re already going through a training and transition phase.

New Board members include Valerie O’Loughlin (past-president), Tom Lehman (president), Betsy Ott (president-elect), Karen McMahon (treasurer), Jon Jackson (western regional director), and Leslie Day (eastern regional director).

Thanks to the outgoing Board members: Dee Silverthorn (past-president), Elizabeth Becker (treasurer), Anne Geller (western regional director), and Javni Mody (eastern regional director). We know that you’ll still be active within HAPS and are excited to see how you’ll use your experiences in your future endeavors.

For the Steering Committee, the new roster is here.

140604 (2) HAPS Steering Committee roster

Thanks to outgoing chairs for this past year: Pat Bowne, Nick Despo, Christine Eckel, Elizabeth Hodgson, Karen McMahon, Lourdes Norman, and Valerie O’Loughlin. We greatly appreciate your contributions and know that you’ll help First-Timers next year as they track down those elusive Chair signatures at the next Scavenger Hunt.

140604 (3) green yugoPresident Valerie O’Loughlin and Executive Director Peter English are busy organizing for the June Board meeting. Steering Committee Chair Ron Gerrits is busy corralling his people for summertime projects. President-elect Tom Lehman has fallen off the radar, last seen entering a brewpub somewhere in southwestern Florida. President O’Loughlin has commissioned HAPS Three – a green 1985 Yugo – to be ready to pick up new president-elect Betsy Ott in case she needs to be sworn in a year early. Keep your fingers crossed.

Meanwhile, this blog theme on the HAPS leadership is coming to a close. It’s been a blast to share with you the people and positions in the administration of HAPS and I hope that it’s been fun and/or informative for you. The blog will continue. Wendy Riggs – Communication Chair – will continue to bring great entries for you. Betsy Ott – president-elect – will be sharing entries with you about the various educational resources that we have to offer through the HAPS website (there are so many great benefits to being a member of HAPS!).

It’s gonna be another great year as we plan towards HAPS 2015 in San Antonio, Texas. Keep up on all the great details as they develop!

Skully in San Antonio
I’m counting down to San Antonio already…

19- Get the Conference APP!

The HAPS App!  We can do THAT!
The HAPS App!  We can do THAT!

I’m super excited about the HAPS Annual Conference APP.  This little app, which can be run on your computer OR phone, is a fantastic tool to ensure you make the most of your Jacksonville adventure, which begins next weekend.  (It isn’t too late to decide to crash the HAPS party next weekend…online registration is available until May 26!)

The APP is a power-packed wonder of a tool to keep you organized and informed at the Annual Conference.  And even if you can’t attend next week (we’ll miss you), you can use the app to keep up with what’s happening at the conference.  So let me just tell you a few of the cool things I can do with my app:

  1. I can build a personalized schedule of conference events using the amazing app!  While this will certainly keep me organized and efficient, I am already finding the process to be particularly painful, especially as I attempt to figure out which workshops I plan to attend on Tuesday and Wednesday at Florida State College.  This process is painful because during most sessions, there are at least 5-12 workshops I really Really REALLY want to attend.  Last year I found it extremely challenging to narrow down the workshop options during each session to ONLY ONE. I am optimistic that the amazing APP will help me sleep in peace as I maximize my professional development potential.  (I wonder how many times I will revise my personal schedule on my app???)
  2. With the app, you can set alarms to remind you to get where you want to go.  This will be particularly helpful for the morning sessions, because I am NOT a morning person.
  3. We can TWEET!  There is a Twitter part of the app that lets us follow the Twitter-ific commentary from other HAPSters. Just tag your tweets #HAPS2014.
  4. Have a question?  The app can do that!  There are maps, exhibitor lists, sponsor information, and even a link to this fabulous blog.

So download the app and get ready for FUN TIMES AHEAD.  See you in Jacksonville!

See you there!
See you there!

HAPS Leadership (#27): Thursday tripping to St. Augustine

The 2014 HAPS Conference in Jacksonville, Florida runs May 24-May 28, ending (officially) Wednesday with the last workshops. However, the incredible adventure is not over.

140514 (1) Saint AugustineWe always plan an optional Thursday adventure for those able to stick around and interested in continuing the incredible vibe. This year, we’ll be visiting the city of St. Augustine – a breathtaking location with so much to see and do. I asked Lourdes, our annual conference coordinator for some details.

Buses will depart from the Hyatt Thursday morning at 9:00 a.m. and then depart from St. Augustine at 5:00 p.m. With a transit time of 35 minutes each way, that gives you an entire day to explore the oldest city in the nation. You need to register and pay an additional charge, so – if you haven’t yet – DO IT! It’ll be a blast. A word of advice; have a water bottle and sunscreen with you. A camera is a must, as well.

Some suggestions for the day include:

140514 (2) Rhett's Piano Bar1. A stroll down George Street to show and eat. I recommend lunch at the Columbia Restaurant. Call to make reservations, as it gets busy at lunch. Make sure you get the house sangria and the 1905 salad with your meal. You won’t be disappointed (if you cannot get into the Columbia, there are lots of great eateries around St. Augustine).

2. A tour of the Castillo de San Marcos is interesting and worth the small entrance fee of $7.

3. If you want to try deep-sea fishing or inshore fishing, there are many charter businesses to accommodate any level of expertise (they usually cover you with a fishing license and gear for the day).

4. I enjoyed the pirate museum; they have some interesting original artifacts.

5. The trolley tour is also an easy and fun way to get around the city and learn some history.

6. There are a variety of water tours that go through the St. Augustine bay area. Dolphins have been commonly spotted when we’ve gone in the past.

7. There are eco tours, boat tours, pirate tours, and graveyard tours. Ripple Effect Eco Tours has naturalist guided kayak tours ($55/adult)…no experience needed.

8. If you have a car, you can go out to Anastasia State Park for swimming, surfing, hiking, shelling, fishing, and archaeological searching (for fishing, remember to get the license).

9. The St. Augustine Alligator Farm and Zoological Park is really neat (lots more than just gators).

140514 (3) El Galeon and Nao Victoria10. The Nao Victoria will be at the City Marina while we’re there. Nearly five hundred years since becoming the first ship to circumnavigate the world, the Nao Victoria has been reconstructed and is now touring the major ports of Florida in 2014. You can also get a combo ticket to tour the Nao Victoria and the El Galeon (a full-sized replica of a 17th century Spanish galleon).

11. Peter will be there with his binoculars, taking advantage of a great opportunity to go birding.  Ask him nicely and I bet he’d love to share his experience and skill with you.

There are lots of great ways to wrap up your day:

We'll find a flavor just for you!
We’ll find a flavor just for you!

1. How about a gourmet popsicle from the Hyppo? With flavors like champagne mango, key lime, Datil strawberry, and pear Riesling, it’s a great spot to cool down and relax (70 Saint George Street.)

2. Whenever we are in St. Augustine, my kids beg for gelato from Café del Hidalgo (across from the Columbia Restaurant).

There is so much to do, it is hard to decide where to start, but your day promises to be fun filled and memorable! Looking forward to seeing everyone at HAPS in a couple of weeks.

Lourdes140514 (6) Lourdes Norman

18- Let’s Share

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Logo_Share_Your_Knowledge.png
Teachers share. It is what we do.

Information is cheap.  Teachers are no longer holders of ALL knowledge.  Instead, we help organize the massive quantities of information that are accessible to anyone with an internet connection.  Our task has clearly shifted from “Let me TELL YOU everything I know!” to “Let me show you how to understand all this information that is available to you RIGHT NOW.”  We do this by creating a path through the information that ultimately helps students build their own understanding inside their own brains.  The way the information is organized cannot be copyrighted…it cannot be “sold.”  And maybe because of this, many teachers are eager to share their ideas and methods.

I think by nature, teachers are a generous bunch.  The HAPS email listserv is an excellent example, as are the contributors to the Life Science Teaching Resources Community.  I know that I am extremely complimented when someone is interested in using my teaching resources.  It somehow adds additional validity to my work, making the investment feel more “worth it.”  And I think we all remember what it is like to teach a class for the first time (or to TEACH for the first time!)  We start out with nothing…but if someone shares with us, we start out with a glimpse of their experience and perspective, which can be invaluable.  This is what is so great about the HAPS Annual Conference.  It is an amazing opportunity to SHARE!

I do understand being shy to share…because it is easy to feel like our materials aren’t “perfect” yet.  But I know someone else’s imperfect materials are STILL a start for me!  (And I’m sure many of you are like me and don’t ever use anything AS IS.  We always have to tweak things!)

For most authors,
the greatest risk is not
piracy
but
obscurity.
-Tim O’Reilly

Sharing makes us all better educators.  What a lovely thing!

HAPS Leadership (#26): Steering Committee preparations for JAX!

We're here to serve you!
We’re here to serve you!

Seventeen days until the 2014 HAPS Conference in Jacksonville, Florida and the Steering Committee is busy making preparations for our 28th annual conference. As usual, there are so many things to do at the conference, and the Steering Committee Chairs are busy getting ready for all of them.

You too can earn this much bling for your ID badge!
You too can earn this much bling for your ID badge!

The conference starts off Saturday evening with the Opening Reception. It’s a great chance to renew friendships and meet a lot of new people. Many of the Chairs will be out in force, welcoming people to the conference. They’ll be a great resource if you’re curious about the events and attractions in store for the week. As usual, Tom Lehman – president-elect – will be there with his tie-dye shirts, ready for the Shirt Swap. Bring your school gear and be ready to find something to take home and treasure.

Quick, there's a bulls-eye!  Get'her signature!
Quick, there’s a bulls-eye! Get’her signature!

Sunday morning, the Chairs will help welcome First Timers to the First-Timer Breakfast with the Presidents Emeriti. They’ll hand out Scavenger Hunt cards to the First-Timers, who’ll have the challenge of finding chairs of each committee and getting their initials on their card. As you learn about each committee, you’ll be one step closer to the drawing for free conference registration to next year’s annual conference in San Antonio, Texas. Look for the Bulls-eye buttons and that’ll identify the Chairs and Regional Directors (make sure you know which Region you’re from so you can get the write signature).

Throughout Sunday, you’ll find various Chairs manning the Foundation table. Learn from them what the Foundation is and what it can do for you. Several of them will be near the posters, so there’s another opportunity for learning.

Nick furiously signing cards, repping the Foundation table, and describing the Animal Use Committee!
Nick furiously signing cards, repping the Foundation table, and describing the Animal Use Committee!

Monday morning, the Chairs will be up early and bright-eyed for the annual Foundation Fun Run. Come find them out on the Riverfront, directing participants on the Run. It’ll be a great chance to get some exercise and help raise funds for a wonderful cause. After that, come to the Business Meeting and participate in the business of HAPS. We’ve had some great discussions in the past and anticipate another lively and informative meeting.

Later that day, Shanan Atkinson and Peter English will be hosting the Vendor Raffle for amazing prizes. This will be your last chance to get Chair initials before the drawing of the Scavenger Hunt cards. Be sure to have the conference App on your Smart Phone, so you can find the pictures of the Chairs to help you hunt them down.

Why, yes I do know where the Foundation Oversight meeting is.  Follow me...
Why, yes I do know where the Foundation Oversight meeting is. Follow me…

Tuesday, we’ll be at Florida State College for the Workshops. Several of the committees are having their annual meetings during lunch on Tuesday (check the Steering Committee poster for details). That’s an incredible opportunity to learn how much the committees can do and what you can get out of (and put into) a committee.

Wow, all that in less than a week. Whew, it’s going to be a busy time, but we’ve learned in the past that it’s more than worth it. See you in JAX!

Let us help make this conference as rich an experience as possible for you!
Let us help make this conference as rich an experience as possible for you!

HAPS Leadership (#25): 2014 Annual Conference preparations

HAPS 2014 is in 24 days! The Annual Conference for the Human Anatomy & Physiology Society starts in Jacksonville, Florida on Saturday, May 24th. If you haven’t yet, start making plans. It’s a great week, full of incredible events and people. Let’s listen in on two new HAPS members planning for their first conference.

140430 (1) MinionP. Langerhans: Frank, I’m excited to attend my first HAPS conference this next month. I’ve lurked on the list-serv for a few years and read the HAPS-EDucator, but otherwise I haven’t been too involved. However, I’ve always wanted to visit Florida, so I decided to sign up for the Jacksonville conference. I’ve never been to the area, so tell me what it’ll be like.

F. Netter: Paul, The Jacksonville area is gorgeous. We’ll be staying at the Hyatt Regency, which is right on the Riverfront. There’ll be a lot of neat places to see within walking distance. Best of all, the Jacksonville Jazz Festival will be just a few blocks away. Live music to sample throughout the weekend. The Marketplace is next door, with lots of great restaurants. There’s a water taxi that can easily take you to restaurants and parks across the river.

140430 (2) MinionP. Langerhans: Well, I’m glad that I found you as a roommate. I don’t know any other HAPS members, so I was worried about finding a roommate. However, the HAPS website has a Roommate Finder forum as well as a Guide for First-timers. Man, that was really helpful in figuring out what to expect. I just read that the HAPS Foundation has organized a 5K Fun Run for Monday morning. We’ll be running along the Riverwalk and over the Main Street bridge. It’ll be an early morning – race starts at 7:00 a.m. – but that gives us time to make the Business meeting.

F. Netter: I’ve been reading the Sneak Peeks at the Update Seminar speakers. There’s a great diversity of topics, so I’m curious to see how they go. I’ve also signed up for one of the HAPS-I courses, so that’ll be another great way to meet HAPSters and explore the conference.

140430 (3) Minion

P. Langerhans: Which course did you sign up for? I was curious, but was too late. I need to learn more about those courses.

140430 (4) MinionF. Netter: All HAPS-I courses are graduate credit level courses and can be applied towards a Master’s or Ph.D. program. They’re run through Alverno College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. You can find the list of courses on the website. New courses are announced on Facebook and Twitter. They even have financial aid available. They accept applications four times a year and the awarded scholarships may be used anytime up to 12 months after receipt, so you might as well apply now.

P. Langerhans: Good idea. I’ll check it out and apply. I’m curious to check out the Saturday reception. President-elect Tom Lehman has mentioned the Shirt Swap for that night. Bring a shirt from your institution and be prepared to swap it for someone else’s shirt. I guess he’s into tie-dye something fierce and will be bringing several tie-dyed shirts to swap. Sunday morning, we’ve got the First-timers breakfast with the Presidents Emeriti, where we get to learn about the “ins and outs” of HAPS and realize how much we can get out of a conference and the Society as a whole.

140430 (5) MinionF. Netter: You mentioned that you’re presenting a workshop. The workshops will be at Florida State College – South Campus. I’ve checked their website; it looks like an incredible campus. I can’t wait to see the labs. I’ve checked the workshop schedule and realize that I’m going to have a hard time choosing which to go to. There are so many cool ones!

P. Langerhans: I know. I was scared to present, but I’ve talked with other workshop presenters and they say it’s a great experience. The attendees are excited to learn and share. Several people said they came away with pages of new ideas to take home and try. That sounds amazing to me. I’ve even downloaded the HAPS 2014 Annual Conference app to keep track of the workshops and seminars that I want to attend. Say, are you taking the Thursday trip to St. Augustine?

140430 (6) MinionF. Netter: You bet. That place sounds incredible. The restaurants look amazing!  I was able to squeeze it into my travel itinerary, so I’m excited to see what the day trip is like. Man, I can’t wait for the conference and join the ranks of HAPS minions!

How about you?

140430 (7) Minion

 

16- HAPS Annual Conference

April is drawing to a close (whaaaat???) which means May is almost here and there are about 500 reasons why that is REALLY fantastic news.  First, it means that SUMMER IS NEAR (oh glory days)!  And second, it means that we’ll all be celebrating teaching and learning in Jacksonville in just a few short weeks.

Image
May 24-29

So sign up for the conference and meet us in Florida.  You still have 2 days to register for the conference at regular rates (late registration rates go into effect Thursday May 1). There is a conference app (thanks Wiley!) that includes the entire conference schedule as well as relevant maps and even exhibitor contact information.  The dynamic app updates instantly to keep you apprised of schedule changes and I noticed it even has a link to this blog on the front page!  (I better start thinking of some good posts to share from Jacksonville…) While I haven’t quite mastered the elusive art of Tweeting, I am hoping to become a Tweeter by the time I arrive in Florida so that even if you can’t make it to Jacksonville, you can follow our adventures using the hashtag #HAPS2014.

The HAPS Annual Conference is an amazing event and I think it is because HAPS is like a giant a family.  I was a first-timer last year in Vegas, though I’d been participating on the HAPS-listserv for about 2 years.  And it was such a kick to meet the people I’d been learning from on the listserv.

Make it happen—you won’t regret it a bit.

HAPS Leadership (#23): Secretary to the Board

She keeps us sweet!
She keeps us sweet!

An organization lives on its documentation.  You can sink or swim depending on how well you keep track of details.  When the details are there, they help you stay focused and moving forward.  When they’re absent, you meander directionless or backtrack with no idea that you’re retreading previous trails.

Carol Veil is the Secretary for the HAPS Board of Directors.  It’s Carol’s responsibility to keep track of the documentation during meetings and help us to keep our focus.  I had a chance to chat with Carol recently and find out what she thinks of her role and of HAPS.

1.      What’s the coolest part about being the secretary?

      The two coolest things about being secretary are how much I have learned about HAPS and how much better I have gotten to know the other HAPS members on the BOD. 

      There are so many details that must be handled to run an organization like HAPS.  Prior to being on the BOD, I was unaware of the many behind-the-scenes processes that are so necessary.  And as secretary taking the notes at meetings, I am focused on everything that is discussed.  Hands always on the keyboard – no daydreaming!

      It has also been cool getting  to know the other BOD members, some of whom I previously knew by name but had never talked to them more than a quick “hello” at a conference.  It’s fun to see both the “business” and the “casual” sides of everyone.   I must give a big shout-out to President Valerie O’Loughlin and Executive Director Peter English.  They are in constant communication with the BOD (not quite daily emails, but close) and are always working hard on behalf of the organization. 

2.   What’s the biggest challenge? 

     140326 (2) F grade For me, the biggest challenge of being secretary has been learning the appropriate level of detail to include in the minutes that are publically posted for all to read.  Personally, I tend to be very “anal” (I can use that term in an A&P blog, right?) about details. The first draft of minutes that I sent to the President for review included everything that happened at the BOD Google hangout meeting short of who coughed when!   That draft came back to me like an F-student research paper, covered with 140326 (3) A gradestrike-outs and comments.   It took me until the third BOD meeting to become the A-student, with minimal edits to my minutes and a big “thank you” of approval.  The take-home message for me – there is a big difference between personal notes for myself and public minutes for an organization!  

3.  Whose name do you have the hardest time spelling?

The name I have the hardest time spelling correctly is Shannon, Shanon, Shanan (Molnar – our Business Manager from ASG).  I have to remember … only one “n” in the middle and “a-n” at the end!  I got it now! 

4.  What was your impression of the mid-year meeting in JAX?

The mid-year meeting in Jacksonville was a delightful experience. It was the first time for me to meet with the entire BOD in person (as opposed to conference calls and Google hangouts).   In addition, the BOD had one afternoon meeting with the Steering Committee.  It was so nice to interact face-to-face with everyone, rather than electronically.  We got a lot of business accomplished in two long days of meetings. 

Cheers!
Cheers!

In addition, I was pleasantly surprised how beautiful Jacksonville is – I had no idea!  The St. John’s River runs right through the downtown, with numerous bridges crossing over as well as water taxis.  It’s a great location for the 2014 HAPS conference – hotel nicely situated, lovely for an evening walk, a ride on the river, and some good food (such as the tasty chocolate truffle torte at River City Brewing Company!).

HAPS Leadership (#22): Safety Committee

140319 (1) Safety firstSafety First!  As educators, we want our students to learn and grow within a safe environment.  The HAPS Safety Committee takes this charge very seriously and has created a plethora of resources to aid you in providing the best environment for your students.  Karen McMahon is the interim Chair of the Committee, having helped create many of the resources of this group.

Spotlight on Safety has a series of features on safety basics (equipment, practices) that every lab which teaches A&P should have.

Karen McMahon, Chair
Karen McMahon, Chair

There are also articles on Gloves and Protective Eyewear, as well as information about the revised standard about safe exposure to such chemicals as benzene.

The HAPS Safety Guidelines cover all aspects of lab safety from the safe storage of chemicals to protective wear to safety contracts.  This is an invaluable resource for those concerned about the safety of our students in the laboratory.  Safety Cases studies are a fantastic resource in the members’ only section of the website.

HAPS has opened the Safety Survey for you to share your thoughts and concerns.  The Safety Committee created the survey – first – to remind members that lab safety should be foremost in all of our preparations for lab.  Secondly, it allows our committee to find out what type of lab accidents are most common in the A&P lab and see if the incidence and type of lab injuries can be correlated/prevented with certain practices.  The Safety Survey in on the HAPS website and will be open through April 1st.

A safe student is a better student!
A safe student is a better student!

The Safety Committee will publish the results of this survey in a poster at the Jacksonville Annual Meeting.  Come chat with us about lab safety.

HAPS Leadership (#20): Steering Committee

140305 (1) Herding CatsIt’s time to meet the person in charge of the HAPS Steering Committee (SC).  As you know, the Steering Committee is made up of Chairs of the various committees throughout the Human Anatomy & Physiology Society.  Herding this group of cats falls to Ron Gerrits, current Steering Committee Chair.

Ron became SC Chair this past July, having previously served as Chair of the Curriculum & Instruction Committee.  During his tenure with C&I, his committee worked on the Learning Outcomes and put together an incredible package.  Ron brought a strong sense of order and organization with him, which will serve him well as the head of the Steering Committee.

“Becoming the Steering Committee Chair has been a bit overwhelming.  I am still trying to figure out what needs to be done, by when, and by whom.  It’s coming together.  Much of my efforts have been spent getting comfortable with the technology that will make us more efficient and better record-keepers in the long-term.”

140305 (2) Ron GerritsRon’s coming into position during a bumpy time, technology-speaking.  HAPS has been instituting a new website this year, switching to a new email domain for the Board and SC, and a new online management system for documents.  However, Ron’s taking charge of his committees’ needs and helping them sort out what they need and where they can find it.

“In the end, the incorporation of this new technology will be a benefit to HAPS.  As we develop a better archive for documents, that will serve current and future chairs very well.”

It can’t be all a downer, can it?

“No, there are upsides, too.  One of the big benefits of being the Steering Committee Chair is the pleasure of working with like-minded people.  The committee chairs are dedicated instructors of A&P and want to see HAPS be a successful, well-run organization.  They’re all very busy, but they all know that HAPS is worth it.”

Ron’s already busy this spring, getting the Steering Committee ready for the annual conference in Jacksonville this May.  The Steering Committee will present a poster to describe how the various committees can help you.  They will hold their annual Scavenger Hunt for First-Time HAPSters.  They will also hold their annual committee meetings (most will be during the Tuesday lunch).  Keep an eye out for the Smart-device APP that will help you navigate through the conference; there’ll be lots of goodies from the Steering Committee on it.

Everything in its right place!
Everything in its right place!

The Steering Committee is an incredible herd.  Helping to keep them focused and moving forward can be a lot of work, but Ron appears to have the group well maintained.  Hee Yah!