STC 2012 Summit Experience

Roger at Cloud Gate

Roger at Cloud Gate (scroll down for more photos)

I had a wonderful time at the STC 2012 Summit in Chicago. This year was extremely fun. Looking back at my pre-Summit blog post, I believe I successfully accomplished my four original goals: network, learn new trends, take and copious notes, and enjoy the city.

Goal: Network, Network, Network

Result: Success

I networked a lot. I love to meet other technical communicators throughout the conference. There were a lot of familiar faces, and there were plenty of new faces, as well. It was a pleasure meeting and greeting various folks throughout the Summit, and I genuinely hope that these connections last throughout the year until my next conference—whether it is LavaCon 2012 or the 2013 STC Summit.

Goal: Learn New Trends

Result: Success

The educational sessions and leadership meetings were extremely beneficial. I know that I am still learning and will always continue to learn. This mantra will serve me well for future endeavors, because I strive to seek new knowledge at every opportunity.

To sum up what I took away from the conference, I learned how to

  • improve my online professional presence,
  • spruce up websites with web-friendly fonts,
  • leverage my professional network for future employment opportunities,
  • maintain a professional portfolio, and
  • craft an action plan for reviving my local STC Chapter.

I learned other things as well, but I will discuss them in detail in a subsequent blog entry after I’ve had a chance to review my notes.

Goal: Take Notes

Result: Not yet determined

I took plenty of notes, but I’m not ready to share my opinion whether it was successful. These notes will be a valuable resource when I decipher my shorthand and scribbles. I also took notes on my computer, and I’m ready to write some responses to the seminars and what I learned from them.

Goal: Enjoy the City

Result: Hugely successful

Sears Tower

Sears Tower

This goal was absolutely fulfilled. Check out the photos of my adventures in Chicago. During previous conferences, I spent plenty of time at the educational sessions. Like any good conference-going individual, I wanted to get the most out of the conference because it is a valuable experience. But this the balance between enjoying this mini-vacation and attending sessions at a professional level was excellent.

Chicago at Sunset

Chicago at Sunset

Note: I paid for this entire trip myself, including conference fees, airfare, accommodations, and food. I also took annual leave from my current position to attend this summit. My goal for next year is to convince my supervisor to allow the company to fund a Summit trip or any conference trip. I will explain the value of attending professional development seminars.

Deep Dish Pizza at Lou Malnati's

Deep Dish Pizza at Lou Malnati's

While visiting Chicago, I saw the best attractions: Sears Tower, Buckingham Fountain, Cloud Gate, Navy Pier, and Wrigley Field. I also enjoyed eating authentic Chicago deep-dish pizza, saw Frank Lloyd Wright’s house, and rode the “L” train through various suburbs.

Navy Pier Ferris Wheel

Navy Pier Ferris Wheel

Despite the fears of the NATO Summit, I felt extremely safe throughout the entire visit in Chicago. Keep in mind that Chicago is a huge city, and what happens downtown may not affect suburbs. I am thankful that I avoided the protests and was able to enjoy visiting popular attractions without issues.

Last Thoughts

In conclusion, I had a great time at the Summit and am planning my next conference. I have been encouraged to attend the LavaCon Conference in Portland later this year. I will make my best effort to attend.  Some of my colleagues are planning for the 2013 STC Summit, which will be in Atlanta. I plan to attend that Summit because it is the 60th Anniversary of the Society for Technical Communication, and I am on a committee to assist with the celebrations.

If you wish to stay in contact with me, please leave a message on this entry or message me via Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, or Google+. I wish I could have spent more time with colleagues, but I intend to stay in touch with everyone I met this year. I hope you enjoyed the conference as much as I did, and I look forward to seeing you next year!

I will post more about the Summit later this week and next.

4 thoughts on “STC 2012 Summit Experience

  1. Roger Renteria Post author

    Thank you, Arnold! I’m glad that you liked the article. We will have to meet up at the next conference! I believe I’m following you on Twitter… Until then, we can communicate there as well.

  2. Pingback: Blogging, Blogging Everywhere | STC Technical Communication Summit 2012

  3. Pingback: Blogging, Blogging Everywhere | STC Technical Communication Summit 2013

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