A lot has changed in recent months as we all head into a very different looking CLE/CPD season. In the CLE/CPD world, we are all exploring and using different modes of program delivery—mostly in a virtual environment. The biggest challenge to all of us is how to provide the in-person experience attendees are used to while in a virtual environment with technology obstacles such as internet bandwidth.
ACLEA’s 2020 Virtual Annual Meeting, held this past July, was a good example of how to overcome this challenge. The standard plenary and breakout sessions were available, opportunity for members to network was made possible through the use of an app, and access to an exhibit hall was present. All of these pieces are just some of the reasons why we as ACLEA members look forward to attending the Mid-Year and Annual Meetings. The virtual environment did in fact make us miss each other even more, but the chat conversations in each of the sessions definitely helped.
The virtual meeting was put together in a shorter timeframe than our planning committee are typically used to. It was not easy and there were several bumps along the way, but nothing the Vancouver Planning Committee along with the Executive Committee and Ewald could not manage. A lot of work went into that and I want to extend my deepest appreciation and gratitude to everyone involved for all the heavy lifting and hard work. The solution may not have been flawless, but the amount of work that went into putting this conference out there showed. Excellent job! Well done! This experience will definitely help us as we move forward in the new normal for our future conferences.
The months ahead will be met with a lot of uncertainty in a rapidly changing environment, but a lot of lessons have been learned in how quickly we have all had to pivot our CLE/CPD delivery methods in addition to ensuring the content we are delivering is reflective of the times we are in. Every one of us has done similar or different things in our organizations and listening to the conversations during the monthly SIG meetings and watching the dialogue on the listservs, it is evident ACLEA members are willing to share best practice, lessons learned, and are looking to brainstorm new ideas.
If you are not already participating in SIG meetings and signed up for the listservs, I really encourage you to do so. You never know, your next great idea may be right under your nose.
Stay safe everyone and keep up the great work you have all been doing in this challenging time.