Friday, April 29, 2011

April APS Executive Board & Council Meetings

I've arrived at the site of the APS April Meeting after a few delays in my flights (the storms in the south and mid-west on the 27th required flight plan changes and congestion at airports).  As long as I make my connections (which I did since I had a 3.5 hour layover), I don't mind since I have a Kindle full of books (vampire books are my guilty pleasure).  However, I did land over an hour late at the Orange County Airport and after taking the SuperShuttle, I arrived at the hotel over a half an hour into the Executive Board dinner.  I was disappointed since the food is usually wonderful and the conversation even better but it wasn't horrible to jump into the shower and get to bed early.

The Executive Board Meeting started at 8:30 am on the 28th.  Like the last Board Meeting, strategic planning for the future years of the Society took up more than half of the day.  This planning is led by a facilitator to focus our discussions on a topic and organize the brainstorming conversation that results.  The experience has been a fulfilling one since I had a few ideas develop in the process and feel that they may become a reality in the future.  It feels good not only to have your ideas valued, but to feel like you are making a lasting impact on something.

Today is the Council Meeting.  Since I am writing this during this meeting, I don't have much to share so far.  However, the schedule for today is very similar to the meeting I described last November.  I did take a short walk to the back of the room and I thought you might be interested in what a meeting of the Council looks like:

Here, we are discussing the budget for 2012 and comparing it with the actual income and expenses for different activities (like publishing journals and professional meetings) of the society in past years.

As far as the April Meeting is concerned, over the last two days preparations for this have become apparent.  Registration booths have gone up outside of the hotel lobby, and display boards for research posters are up (see this post about what professional conference posters are like).  There are also more physicists milling about.  I find it interesting that I can identify other physicists but I'm not exactly sure what it is about a person that indicates that they are like me...  Is it they way they carry themselves?  Or is it they way they dress?  Or is it that these are the people who don't look like they are planning a day of fun at Disneyland (just up the road)?  By tomorrow, it will be very easy to tell since all of us will have name tags!

Well, it is almost break time in the Council Meeting...  I write more soon.  Have a great weekend!