First, let me say THANK YOU to all of you who have submitted proposals to present at the conference. An initial review indicates that there is a great deal of interesting, innovative and inspiring work going on out there and SIETAR USA members who are eager to share it with you. I am really encouraged to see so many great proposals. The Program Chairs will have more highlights to share with you next month. For now, I will just assure you that you are not going to want to miss the Mind, Culture, Society conference this October in Omaha. If you submitted a proposal, you will hear from the Program Committee soon regarding your proposal and next steps to prepare for the conference.
Upcoming newsletters in June, and July/August will feature keynote speakers, master workshop presenters, as well as special events being planned for the conference and ways that you may contribute or take part.
Here are a couple deadlines and aspects of the conference to keep in mind.
Scholarships: The applications for scholarships are OPEN. If you are a student in an IC or DEI course of study or a new non-profit person wanting to find out about SIETAR USA and connect with other scholars and practitioners in the field - this is a great way to get involved. Submit your application today. Deadline is July 31st.
SPONSORING, EXHIBITING, and ADVERTISING. Yes, Indeed, this is part of what makes the wheels turn and the bus keep going. It is also a great way to demonstrate your commitment to intercultural competence and diversity, equity, and inclusion in your organization, city, community. Be recognized among the leaders in the field. Share your tools and training opportunities with those who are making a difference today. Advertise your certification and accreditation programs to those actively engaged in enhancing their skills to do this important work. Contact Karen Fouts, SIETAR USA Administrative Director or fill out the form on the conference website to secure your place as a SIETAR USA supporter.
We are happy to announce that our registration rates for 2021 will not be increasing from our last in-person conference two years ago in Atlanta. In fact, we have been able to lower the rates by $10. Full registration details are available on the website and registration will be open within the next couple of weeks. Watch for the announcement soon.
HOTEL reservations: The conference will take place at the Omaha Hilton Hotel, adjacent to the Conference Center. An ideal location, and a great hotel. We have been able to secure a fabulous rate at the Hilton for our conference attendees. Just $109 per night, per room (plus tax and fees). There is also a reduced parking rate for conference attendees for those of you who will be driving to Omaha. The hotel block will be open with registration until September 15th. After that time the rate or room availability will no longer be guaranteed. We therefore advise you to book your room early so that you are guaranteed that great rate. Remember, once the room block has been utilized, you may not be able to get that rate, but will have to pay the best available rate at the time of booking.
SIGs: Yes, SIGs (Special Interest Groups) are returning to SIETAR USA. See the full article in this newsletter for further information. What SIG do you want to start or join? Remember, SIGs need advocates to function. Their existence is totally dependent on the actions of their members. It’s all about you.
Traveling and Meeting Safely.
Despite the impressive and highly successful vaccination efforts throughout the US it is understandable that people continue to have concerns about the safety and security of traveling and meeting in groups at this time. Covid-19 can cause serious illness and should not be taken lightly by anyone. The goal of the current administration is to have 70%+ of the population vaccinated by July 1st and hopefully closer to 80% by October when we will be meeting. That is reassuring but is not all that we must do. In addition, we must take care personally and transportation and accommodation facilities must do their part as well. Please take a moment to look at the attached presentations that details all that the Hilton is doing to ensure the safety of their guests and our conference attendees. From the airport transfers to the high contact areas in your room and meeting rooms, they are taking great care to make the spaces in which we will be interacting safe. Menus and serving protocols have been changed, seating arrangements altered, and sanitization centers created throughout the hotel as well as a contactless check-in and check-out processes instituted are a few of the strategies in the Hilton’s Clean Stay and Event Ready program. In addition, we are paying attention to seating arrangements in plenaries as well as breakout rooms, registration protocols, and social events at the conference. We do believe that if we all do our part that we can have a safe in-person experience. However, we will continue to monitor the situation and if necessary, we will make changes.