The Annual NSH Symposium/Convention (NSH 2017) is the largest educational event working to advance and promote the histology profession. It’s the premier source of learning, knowledge and future-oriented research for histotechnicians and histotechnologists. Attendees get access to world-class resources, education, ideas and advocacy. If you’re not attending NSH 2017, you’re missing out on unique opportunities to develop your career.
Even if you are attending the NSH Convention this year, you could still miss out if you don’t have a plan to make the most of the symposium. There’s more to NSH than workshops, speakers, and exhibitors. Here are the best tips you’ll find to make the most of NSH 2017.
Connect with Colleagues
Conferences like NSH 2017 are prime opportunities to learn from others in your field. Not just the speakers, but other attendees. Do some planning ahead of time to get the most out of the opportunity. Have a purpose in mind so that you’ll get more value when making connections. Think about any questions or challenges you’re dealing with that other histotechnologists might have insights you could gain from. Also consider how you might be able to provide value to those you meet.
Poll social media groups such as LinkedIn and/or histonet before the convention to see who is attending and who you might like to meet. Do as much networking as possible, even informally. Introduce yourself to the person sitting next to you at a session or at lunch. Watch for networking events, meetups, and after-parties.
Meet the Speakers
Attend the sessions of speakers and experts you want to learn from. After the session, introduce yourself and ask if they would be interesting in discussing the topic in more detail. Invite them to meet over lunch or drinks later on.
The NSH Convention has some terrific lectures and workshops, so you’ll need to make the most of your opportunities. That could mean deciding between competing sessions, and picking one will mean missing another. Plan your sessions ahead of time so that you’re not caught at the last minute trying to figure out where you’re going next.
If you realize during a session that the topic or direction is not as valuable as you thought, get up and discreetly leave if you’re able. Find another session and quietly join that event. The workshops are intended for your benefit, not the speaker’s.
Discover New Tools and Technologies
Lectures and workshops aren’t the only opportunities for professional development. Make time to visit the exhibitor booths and learn about the latest developments in histology. Many of the exhibitors can help you discover new ways to improve the quality and efficiency of your daily work.
Make Your Notes Actionable
Even the most valuable workshops won’t be useful if you don’t apply what you learn. Take notes that not only capture the information, but also challenge you with specific actions you need to take when you return to work.
Debrief with Other Attendees
Find other attendees to talk with each day and ask what they’re getting out of the convention. Make dinner appointments with colleagues, and share a flight or a taxi with a colleague so that you’ll have natural opportunities to debrief throughout the convention.
Turn Off Your Devices
Electronic devices provide convenient distractions that get in the way of your mission—to get the most out of NSH 2017. If it’s not absolutely necessary, don’t take any calls or send any emails until you get back home. Electronic devices will distract you from opportunities you’ll only have at the symposium.
Take Care of Yourself
Conferences can take their toll on your mind and body, and NSH is no exception. If you don’t take care of yourself, you’ll be running on empty throughout the convention. Do the following:
- Drink plenty of water
- Wear comfortable shoes—you’ll be walking a lot
- Eat healthfully
- Take time-outs during the day
- Spend some time outside each day
- Carry only what you need
- Disconnect the TV in your hotel room
- Get plenty of sleep
Follow up Afterwards
A convention doesn’t really benefit you if you don’t follow up on your action items when you get back home. Do it immediately—review your notes and create an action plan to implement what you’ve learned. Spend the first week debriefing with your team and making good on those actionable notes you took during the conference.
Meet with Aquaro Histology
Be sure to connect with us at NSH 2017. We’re on the forefront of automating microtomy to help histologists do their best work ever. We’ll be at NSH September 17-19 and we’d love to meet you. Look for Aquaro Histology in booth 924—or better yet, contact us ahead of time about meeting up at the convention.