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…

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 (#24): Curriculum & Instruction

140409 (1) handshake.jpgSeveral of the committees within the Human Anatomy & Physiology Society (HAPS) can become quite busy at times. Being chair of such a committee can be daunting. At times, we’ve addressed this issue by having two people serve as co-chairs. You’ve probably wondered what it means to be a “co-chair”, so I asked Terry Thompson and Hiranya Roychowdury what it’s been like to take over the reins of the Curriculum & Instruction (C&I) Committee.

Question: How does it feel to be part of the Steering Committee?

140409 (2) Terry ThompsonTerry: It has been an interesting transition. I’ve been part of the C&I committee for years, but it is interesting now to see the workings from the other side. I continue to be impressed with all our organization has to offer and the great people we get to work with. Peter (English) has also been a great help.

Hiranya: This is my first experience in a steering committee for this big an organization. I have been involved with HAPS since 2007, and, interestingly enough, the first person I got to meet and socialize with as a “First Timer” was Carol Veil. I had been interested in the process of Curriculum Development for quite a while, so I offered my services. She asked me to be a “Friend of the Committee” and I worked in that capacity for some time, offering occasional input. Whether it was my continued unfamiliarity with the so-called “inner circle” or my involvement more with the HAPS-EDucator, I had less time to contribute to the C&I modules. However, I was working as a liaison between the C&I and the Testing Committee (and as chair of two subcommittees under it), so I kept tab on what was going on with the Modules and was quite impressed with especially Terry’s “go-get-’em” style.

Question: What are the benefits of having co-chairs for your committee? Any challenges?

Terry: It is nice to have someone else to split up tasks and work off our strengths, and to bounce ideas off of each other. Everyone is so busy, it helps to work together and help each other. The biggest challenge comes not from being co-chairs, but from the transition to the HAPSConnect. Getting everyone comfortable working within the environment and using the google.docs has been a steep learning curve.

140409 (3) Hiranya RoychowduryHiranya: When Ron asked me if I would be interested in co-chairing with Terry, I jumped at the opportunity. It was quite an honor and I just couldn’t pass it up. So far, most of the heavy lifting has been done by Terry, so if you ask me that question, a resounding reply would be “Great! Especially if you had Terry Thompson to work with!”

Question: What is the status of the Committee?

Terry: The Learning Outcomes are now on a review cycle of 5 modules per year – at least that is our goal. We may find there aren’t any changes needed, but we wanted to set in place a review schedule so that they would be updated as needed to fit feedback and possible changes in teaching focus and strategies over time. We will also likely be adjusting them as needed to incorporate recommendations that come from the task groups, such as David’s survey results on lab outcomes and Carol’s work on using word banks. Also Wendy is reviewing current documents on recommendations related to online teaching and that may be updated as well as influence changes to learning outcomes eventually.

Hiranya: Implementing the features from HAPSConnect (Google) has been daunting, but Peter has been quite helpful in our efforts to train our committee members with these features. Terry and I have had to be flexible in assigning modules to committee members as we all learn how to navigate the new website (check it out!) and update our offerings. We’re working to update the list of web-links, so we could use some help with that project.

1525R-69047If there are any HAPSters out there interested in learning more about committee work, Learning Outcomes, and the secret handshake (originally created by Carol Veil and yoga-modified by Ron Gerrits), contact Terry and Hiranya and they’ll be happy to talk C&I with you.

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!

HAP Leadership (#11): The First-Timer

140101 (1) 2013 HAPS Jacksonville logo

I am so excited!  I just got approval from my college to attend the Annual HAPS Conference this coming May in Jacksonville, Florida.

Wow, this will be my first time to a HAPS conference.  I had been a lurker on the list-serv for four years and finally built up enough courage to reply to some of the queries and post a question of my own.  Wow, the response was incredible.  The sharing of ideas, experiences, and perspectives was amazing.  After a year, I decided that I needed to meet some of these people in person.

On the HAPS website, I read about the upcoming annual conference in Jacksonville.  I decided to submit a proposal for a workshop and took that proposal to my division dean.  She just came back with approval for me to go to the conference, with partial support for expenses.  I’m applying for one of the HAPS scholarships; keep your fingers crossed!

140101 (2) Riverfront Hyatt

Now, I’ve got to figure out everything that I’ll need for the conference.  I’m already seeing some people post on the list-serv, looking for roommates.  That’ll be a good way to save money and a great way to meet someone new.  The conference will start on a Saturday evening with a welcome mixer at the Riverfront Hyatt.  Someone named Tom Lehman is organizing a t-shirt swap; I need to check with our Marketing Department and get a shirt to swap.

Checking out the chamber of commerce website, I see that there’s a great boardwalk in front of the hotel.  I’ll make sure to pack my running shoes for some morning jogs.  The Sunday itinerary starts with the First-Timer’s breakfast.  Cool!  I’ll get to meet several other newbies like me and enjoy breakfast with previous presidents of HAPS.  The rest of the day will be attending Update Seminars and checking out the Exhibitor’s Hall.  Wow, I hear that several of the authors of the textbooks and lab manuals that I use will be there.  How cool is that?!

The Steering Committee is organizing a Scavenger Hunt.  I’ll need to review through the pictures of the Chairs on the APP so I can get my scavenger hunt card filled out.  All of the completers go into a drawing for a free conference registration to the next year’s conference in San Antonio.  Whoa!  I’m excited to meet other First-Timers and work together to find everyone.  It looks like we’re on our own for lunch; that’ll be a great time to get to know other HAPS members – I mean, HAPSters!  I’m a HAPSter!

Monday will start with the HAPS Foundation 5K Run.  That’ll be a great way to start the morning, with plenty of time to still make the Business meeting and be part of the legislative process.  More seminars and vendors; lots to keep me busy!

140101 (3) Florida State College

Tuesday and Wednesday, we’ll have workshops at Florida State College.  I’m excited to give my workshop and see what others think.  I’m also amazed at the description of some of the other workshops that I can attend.  Wow, here’s a neat one on histology that I can really use.  Here’s one on flipping the classroom; been curious to learn more about that idea. Oh wow, here’s one on cadaver labs.  Oh man, there is so much to choose from!

I just found out that a Jazz Festival will be going on that first weekend on the Riverfront.  Oh, seriously too cool!  I know where I’ll be in the evenings.  I bet a lot of other HAPSters will be there, too.  Awesome!

140101 (4) Jazz Festival

The Atlantic Beach is twenty-five minutes from the hotel.  A friend told me to check out the Ragtime Tavern for really good coconut shrimp.  Hmm…have to find some time to get out there and check it out.

140101 (5) DisneyApparently, there’s an optional Disney package that I can check out.  Unfortunately, I won’t have time for that, but I do want to check out the other Thursday trips offered the day after the conference.

Holy crap, there’s just too much to do!  I am so excited; I can’t believe that I have to wait five months for the conference.  Oh well, that’s okay.  I’m curious to check out the list-serv after Winter break and see if anyone has advice on things to do or see while in JAX.  I wonder if anyone in HAPS likes baseball or microbreweries.  I cannot wait to find out!

HAPS Leadership (#10): Serving you the member

But I can't run in golf shoes!
But I can’t run in golf shoes!

I was playing the back nine at Torrey Pines when I got the call.  “Sir, HAPS President O’Loughlin has injured her ankle and cannot participate in the World Summit 10K next week.  You’ll have to step up.”  Just then, HAPS One – a refurbished Huey helicopter – came through the clouds and landed on the tee box of hole #16.  Before I knew it, I was being whisked away to Albuquerque, New Mexico to run in the same heat as Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin.

Okay, enough with the Walter Mitty riff.  Back to reality.

As the president-elect for the Human Anatomy & Physiology Society (HAPS), I’ve been writing weekly blog entries to share with you the “behind the scenes” work within the Board of Directors and the Steering Committee.  I have several more entries to publish in the coming year, but I wanted to take today to share the global function of these groups in terms of HAPS.

HAPS is primarily a volunteer organization.  Incepted in the late 1980s, it started as a bunch of college teachers wanting to share ideas about teaching anatomy and physiology.  It grew into a larger body of educators that reached from coast to coast.  In time, we realized the need for official assistance and hired both a management firm and an executive director.  However, a lot of the work is still performed by volunteers.

What an enthusiastic bunch!
What an enthusiastic bunch!

The Board of Directors serves as the Executive branch of the HAPS leadership.  They monitor the finances and policies of HAPS.  They serve as the interface with other societies and with vendors.  They help to make conferences – regional and annual – a reality.  Keeping in contact with the membership, they find out what works at the conferences and what doesn’t (the Monday mixer has been a big hit, the laser tag competition on the Las Vegas strip…not so much).

The Steering Committee serves as the Legislative branch of the HAPS leadership.  Each member of the SC is the chair of a separate committee.  Each committee tackles an issue or policy important to HAPS.  The Chairs come together in the SC to make sure that these projects work together and nothing is being left out.  They bring up concerns from their committee members and take responses back to those same members.

Volunteerism is the key!
Volunteerism is key!

Here’s where you come in.  “Ask not what your Society can do for you…”  No wait, feel free to ask what HAPS can do for you.  The Board and the Steering Committee would love to hear from you.  We’d love to find out what you are curious about or what you’d like to share or do.

  • Check out the HAPS Committees web page and see if there is a committee that sounds interesting to you.  Contact the Chair in charge and learn what they’re doing and how you can participate.
  • Contact your Regional Director and find out what is going on in your area or share what is going on in your area.  See if we’re hosting a regional conference in your area and start making plans.
  • Speaking of making plans, check out the next Annual Conference in Jacksonville, Florida in 2014.  Next week, I’ll share some ideas of things to be thinking about while making plans to attend.
  • OMG, there are so many ways to be active within HAPS.  There’s the list-serv, the Facebook page, the Twitter account, and so on.
Buckle up!
Buckle up!

We’re boldly going to new frontiers in education.  Here’s your chance to step up and enjoy the amazing journey with us!

HAPS Leadership (#8): HAPS-EDucator

1211 (1) HAPS-ED

The HAPS-EDucator is the official publication of the Human Anatomy and Physiology Society (HAPS) and is published online four times per year.  When I first started teaching in 1998, I found an insert card in a new textbook that introduced me to HAPS.  I was at a rural college in eastern Colorado, fairly isolated from science teachers.  I joined HAPS and started receiving the HAPS-EDucator every three months.  It was an amazing window into a group of people with similar interests and amazing stories to tell.  I didn’t get to attend my first HAPS conference until 2001, but those issues of the HAPS-ED hooked me early on.

Jennelle Malcos
Jennelle Malcos
Sarah Cooper
Sarah Cooper

The HAPS-EDucator aims to foster the advancement of anatomy and physiology education by facilitating the collaboration of HAPS members through the publication of a quarterly journal.  Journal articles may include, but are not limited to, those which discuss innovating teaching techniques, original lesson plans or lab exercises, reviews of trending topics in anatomy and physiology, and summaries of newsworthy events.  Jeanelle and Sarah – co-editors – work with dedicated contributors and editors to bring you incredible issues several times a year.  Prior editors, such as Susan Baxley and Marsha Sousa, have set a high standard.  Sarah and Jeanelle continue to keep that standard high and push new frontiers in the changing face of publishing.

Viva Las Vegas!
Viva Las Vegas!

We switched from a printed version to an online version a few years ago.  Whereas I miss having that paper edition in my hands, I really like the color images and graphics that we can implement into the online version.  Jeanelle and Sarah tried something new this year.  They created a special Annual Conference Edition of the HAPS-ED to highlight some of the magic that occurred in Las Vegas during this past conference in 2013.  I recognize the group in the right picture, but who is that in the middle shot?

Have you got a story to tell?  An activity to share?  An edu-snippet to present?  Jeanelle and Sarah would love to hear from you.

HAPS Leadership (#2): Testing Committee

Let me tell you about the HAPS Steering Committee.  It is made up of the chairs of various committees within the Human Anatomy & Physiology Society.  These committees cover such diverse topics as Animal Use and Cadaver Use, Marketing and Membership, Communication and Safety.  I’ll introduce you to the chairs of each of these committees over the next several weeks, but today I’d like to spotlight one committee in particular.

1006 (4) pan

The Testing Committee came about approximately eleven (11) years ago after an enthusiastic annual conference in Phoenix (2002).  During that conference, several Steering Committee (SC) chairs heard from conference attendees that we should consider building a centralized database of exam questions that all members could use.  There were a few workshops that directly tied into that theme, which got these discussions percolating even more.  Over the course of the next year, this topic kept popping up in Board and Steering Committee meetings until it was decided to investigate this idea.  We recruited a few HAPS members to create a task force to research the idea.  Their report to the SC and the Board recommended the creation of a HAPS Comprehensive Exam that could be used by multiple institutions to evaluate their course against others across the country.  From there, we created a standing committee to tackle this project.

Along the way, the Curriculum & Instruction committee created a standardized set of student learning outcomes for Human Anatomy & Physiology courses.  The Testing Committee decided that it made sense to design our exam around these learning outcomes.  People came and went through the committee.  Versions of the exam developed and were implemented at various campuses.  Unfortunately, the energy began to stall as we simply didn’t have enough test questions to create a strong enough exam.

Eric Sun
Eric Sun
Curtis DeFriez
Curtis DeFriez

Enter Eric Sun and Curtis DeFriez.  These two gentlemen became co-chairs of the Testing Committee and re-infused it with energy and focus.  They sought out exam questions from the membership, sorting them according to the learning outcomes.  They created different iterations of the exam to see what would work best.  I have to say; they’ve put in a lot of work on this exam and it shows.  It’s been amazing to see the volume of work they’ve had to go through to create our newest exam.

The Testing Committee is pleased to unveil the new Online HAPS Comprehensive Exam for this next round of testing (starting at the end of this semester – December for most of us).  Working with Chi Tester software (our online testing service), we will now be able to give users almost immediate results of their testing data.  We will be able to provide reliable information about that data using comparisons to institutions of similar type, size, and geographic location.  If you are curious to learn more about the Online HAPS Comprehensive Exam, you can email Eric at esun@hapsconnect.org or Curtis at cdefriez@hapsconnect.org.  For questions about ordering the exams, contact admin@hapsconnect.org or 1-800-448-4277 (USA).  The HAPS Leadership is very proud of the work of the Testing Committee in the development of this exam and appreciate the hard work of all of its members.  Pencils ready!