College of Graduate & Professional Studies
- Graduate Studies
- Professional Studies
Richmond, VA: April 18-19, 2014
By attending this conference we were able to present our research to other university students, professors, and professionals in our field. This conference gave me the experience of presenting my research to a large audience and many connections for the future.
Getting to present my own data that I have been working all year was a great experience. I look forward to more conferences in the future and know that because I was able to attend this one I will be more confident presenting.
Presenting at this conference was a beneficial experience for me that allowed me to practice my presentation skills as well as build my resume. Overall this was a very positive experience for me and I would encourage future students, if given the opportunity, to participate in the same or a similar program.
Roanoke, VA: March 20-22, 2014
The first breakout session I went to see was the guided reading presentation by Jan Richardson and I couldn’t wait to attend this. I had heard so many good things about Jan Richardson. She really showed me how to get the most out of my guided reading lessons.
In March, I got the privilege to not only attend the Virginia State Reading Association (VSRA) Conference but a chance to present as well. We had a lot of people thank us for all of our information and tell us what a fantastic job we did! This was a fantastic experience and really prepared me, because as a reading specialist, I will always have to give presentations to my peers and coworkers!
There were so many wonderful speakers at the conference; my favorite sessions attended were the General Sessions. These sessions were led by famous authors. Chris Lehman and Donnalyn Miller were my two favorite. They both spoke on important topics in the field of reading. I especially enjoyed them because they shared so much knowledge about their research they conduct, and it was with real children in real classrooms! I felt that it directly applied to me and my future teaching.
Throughout the three-day conference, the most valuable aspect was the fact that all of the presentations I went to focused on taking new, relevant research and applying it towards best practice; I left every session with new ideas that were ready-to-use in the classroom, feeling rejuvenated in my desire to make a significant impact on student literacy instruction and learning.
We went to a session run by a panel of principals and superintendents where we were allowed to ask questions about the interview process and questions and responses within them. This session was not only my favorite for informative reasons but also for motivation. I am grateful Longwood provided me with the opportunity to attend and present at the VSRA Conference and cannot wait to go back next year!
This was my first VSRA conference and I was thrilled to attend as well as represent Longwood University. Presenting was an uplifting experience for me; I felt very valued in my profession and felt like I contributed to the conference. I also felt that we helped represent Longwood well.
The third session that I attended was all about using music and movement in the classroom. This was a very exciting and entertaining session. Dr. Scarrow discussed many different ways that music can be used in the classroom and the benefits of using it. I had a great time in this session participating. I had a wonderful time at this conference. I learned so much!
Listening to featured speakers like Chris Lehman and the author of The Book Whisperer, Donalyn Miller, was so inspiring! They lit a new light of inspiration for me. The conference also provided tons of concurrent sessions that filled me with knowledge.
Orlando, FL: March 19-23, 2014
This year, I was privileged to attend The International Conference for the Fantastic in the Arts with Dr. Rhonda Brock-Servais. Throughout the week, English scholars—specializing in Fantasy, Science Fiction, Horror, and Children’s Literature—presented panel discussions on current literary theories being talked about in each of those genres. As an English Masters Candidate, specializing in Creative Writing, the conference illustrated positive and negative responses—from an audience perspective—on popular texts in those areas. As a beginning writer, the conference shaped my understanding on how an audience might respond to specific creative choices through a text’s creation of a character, setting, story, and plot.
Williamsburg, VA: March 19-22, 2014
When I was not volunteering, I had to the opportunity to attend many seminars. I went to some about Autism Awareness, Auditory Processing Disorders, and I was able to attend the guest speaker’s lecture. As I was sitting through these presentations, I did not realize how much time and effort it took to make a good presentation and to be able to keep the audience involved. I now respect the time and effort it takes to make a successful convention.
A highlight from my time at SHAV was hearing David Hammer speak about Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS). It is often misunderstood and over diagnosed, but I feel more equipped to treat a child with CAS after hearing Mr. Hammer’s presentation.
Attending SHAV for the first time was a wonderful opportunity. Throughout the conference, I was able to attend multiple sessions that interested me. Additionally, I presented a poster in the student poster session, which was a new experience for me. Overall, my attendance at SHAV showed me the importance of attending the statewide conventions for my profession.
I thoroughly enjoyed getting to watch my professors present on topics they were so passionate about and it gave a different perspective with them addressing a room full of SLPs rather than a classroom full of students. I learned a lot from the presentations I attended as well as ways to relate what I learned to the classroom or to the therapy setting.
The sessions offered useful information to me as both a student and a future clinician. In one session, Dr. Jay Lucker covered Auditory Processing Disorder, a topic soon to be discussed in our Aural Rehabilitation class. The presentation made intriguing points and laid some foundation for the topic in class. I also hope to incorporate information retroactively and understand more of what Dr. Lucker presented as we spend more time in class on the subject.
On Thursday I went to a presentation on how to analyze language samples in a more efficient manner. I hope to be able to use some of those strategies in my future career as a speech language pathologist. Overall, the SHAV conference was an educationally enriching experience and I am glad that graduate studies has provided me with this opportunity to attend.
I participated in the student luncheon and roundtable with students from other universities in Virginia and was able to discuss topics relevant to the field of speech-language pathology. I also obtained important information about the steps that must be taken after graduating from Longwood. Overall, the 2014 SHAV Conference was an enriching experience that I will cherish for a lifetime.
Melissa Meyers and Allyson Rubino
Wow! Not only did attending SHAV provide me with a plethora of clinically relevant information, it also gave me a great opportunity to network with other professionals and companies in the field. Each of the presentations offered useful strategies for evaluating, intervening, and treating children with speech/language disorders. The presentations also informed us of ways we could lay the language foundation for children to prevent speech/language disorders from developing or reduce the severity of the disorders.
I believe attending this conference enhanced my education thus far in Longwood’s graduate CSDS program and the information obtained from my attendance can be put into use during my clinical practice. The conference provided me with materials and networks that will be important as I pursue my passion and find a career in the field of speech pathology.
In addition to attending sessions, I was able to volunteer and witness the time and energy that the leaders of SHAV put in to make these conferences a success. Overall, I left the conference feeling excited and motivated to get back into the clinic and apply what I learned.
It was such a rewarding experience to attend the Speech Hearing Association of Virginia’s annual conference in Williamsburg, VA. I was provided with the opportunity to attend numerous sessions facilitated by well-known speech-language pathologists in the state of Virginia. I learned therapy strategies and techniques to over-lay the foundation of my current coursework. I am grateful to Longwood University for providing me with this wonderful and enriching opportunity.
Through the presentations, I gained a vast amount of knowledge about speech and language therapy and many creative ideas to implement during therapy. There was also an exhibit room at the conference, where I was able to interact with employers and individuals selling the newest products for speech-language pathologists. Overall, the conference was an amazing experience and a huge step forward in my professional journey to become a speech-language pathologist.
Through the presentations I chose to attend on expanding expressive language, auditory processing disorders, and narrative language sampling, I was able to learn several therapy tools and techniques. I am now using a new strategy learned from SHAV with a client at the Longwood Speech, Hearing, and Learning Services Clinic. These experiences at the SHAV convention made me feel more a part of the profession that I am working so hard to enter.
Going to the SHAV convention was an amazing experience for me. It was extremely informative and was a great way for me to get involved in the association. I really enjoyed the pre-conference that was on Wednesday from 8:30am-4:00pm. The speaker, David Hammer, is a celebrity in the field of Speech and Language Pathology. From his presentation on children with apraxia of speech, not only did I learn more about the disorder but I gained ideas and rationale for therapy ideas with children who have apraxia of speech and severe speech sound errors.
Ryan Tornabene and Michael Mahoney
I also got the opportunity to attend a session on language sampling. This session taught me a new strategy for collecting language samples in school-aged children. Also, this presentation taught me new strategies for eliciting responses from children that are more detailed. I also learned new techniques for analyzing language samples and utterances. Overall, the multiple sessions, presentations and exhibits I attended benefited me greatly.
I was also able to see many presenters at the conference. The presenters were displaying new products. I saw everything from AAC devices to assessments on iPads to expressive language tools. It is really important to be familiar with available products so that I may make decisions about using them with my current and future clients.
Attending this conference allowed me to connect with potential employers and obtain contact information for upcoming internship and externship experiences. It also allowed me to hear professionals speak about various different topics that include current intervention strategies used with different populations and disorders. Overall it was a great experience and I look forward to attending SHAV again next year.
Richmond, VA: March 19-21, 2014
There were many benefits for attending this conference. I had the opportunity to attend a meet and greet with Supervisors that represented School Divisions from all of the different counties in Virginia. I also had the opportunity to talk to them about what the interview process is like for School Counselors as well as ask them what they look for in their applicants. That experience helped me become more comfortable with the process after graduation and it gave me the chance to network even more so than just attending the conference.
I would say that my favorite part of the Conference as a whole was when we got to hear from one of the Board members about how to "Leave a Mark" with your students. She talked about how students all have different abilities and personalities and that they can choose whether to use their abilities for good or for negative reasons. When they choose to use their abilities for good, it leaves a mark on someone and then it is returned back to them. It seems like a simple concept but it is one of the most important things. I also really appreciated hearing about a woman who is 86 years old and still has not retired from working as a School Counselor. She made me want to be like her one day.
Lexington, KY: February 19-22, 2014
The session by Laura Prior and Beth Uhlman was really energetic and helpful. I have always believed that fitness should be a big part of curriculum but could never find really good activities that kept students interested, and these ladies did just that. They had multiple activities that not only included fitness but also classroom SOL’s which is a real bonus. Another session that I found interesting focused on large class games. This session was really informative because I always have trouble creating games that have over 80% of the students moving at once for large classes. The presenter was so great that I bought his book of games to take with me wherever I go teach.
Overall, the KAHPERD conference was spectacular. I met many professionals in my field, I learned many valuable activities that focused on different SOL’s, and it really reminded me that I am passionate about teaching physical and health education.
The second session of the day ended up being in my top three sessions that I truly enjoyed and took something away from. The presenter ended up being from Fairfax Virginia. He not only had a great session that gave me many activity ideas and management ideas but he ended up giving many career lessons throughout the entire conference. He is one contact that I intend to use in my future during my job hunt.
SDAAHPERD Conference was a great experience! I have many new contacts for my future as well as many new tools for my teaching toolbox. It was a great adventure to get to go out of state for a great educational experience. As the conference continued it was great to market for our graduate program here at Longwood. By the time the conference had ended three prospective students had already contacted our program director!
The first presentation that I attended was called "Gnip-Gnop: A fun game for PE". The game is a variation of Ping-Pong that can be played by up to 20 students at one time. I thought this game great for numerous reasons. The first reason being that it puts a creative spin on a game that traditionally only allows up to four players. As a PE teacher optimal participation of students is always the goal. Another reason why I enjoyed this game is that because of this creative spin a great hand and eye coordination game now has the added benefit of working on cardiovascular fitness in a fun way. I see myself using this game in my own physical education game.
Even when we were not participating in presentations throughout the convention, we were able to network with members of the professional community and even had the opportunity to take a tour of the athletic facilities at the University of Kentucky. This trip overall was an amazing experience, and I’m glad I had the opportunity to be a part of it.
This conference included presentations from people all over the east coast. The convention brings in the best of the best to share different games, techniques, equipment, and much more with Health, PE and dance students/professionals. One presentation that I really enjoyed was "Quick games for fun and fitness". The presenter, John Jones, is from Fairfax and I found him to be one of the best presenters and physical educators I have ever met. Mr. Jones was full of energy, had a loud voice that carried throughout the room, and was able to mix in humor with the content he was teaching us. Mr. Jones’ presentation taught me a few games that I will be able to use when I have my own class. After his presentation and a couple of other times throughout the convention I was able to speak with Mr. Jones about a variety of topics pertaining to the physical education profession.
Virginia Beach, VA: November 8-10, 2013
Following in the steps of last year’s very first graduate cohort in the Health and Physical Education (The Great Eight), this year’s cohort (The Phantastic Phour) made their way to their state level professional conference for great people, presentations, vendors, and networking.
One of the presentations I attended was the "The Best of Albermarle County Elementary Physical Education." They presented numerous activities for the elementary level. Some were quick start activities, others were dances, and some were skill focused but all were extremely helpful. The aspect of this presentation that was extremely helpful for me was the inclusion of the modifications you would use to include students with special needs. These adaptations were especially great because they actually showed them while they were presenting so we could see how they would work with students that do not have special needs. This was especially helpful to me because I am getting my masters degree in Adapted PE.
Another benefit from attending this conference was just the ability to see teachers in the HARK profession who care, and want to make a difference in the lives of their students. This not only gave me hope for the future of our profession, but also made me want to take their innovations and implement them into my future classroom.
Being that most of these presenters and attendees have jobs it was an extra benefit to meet some of the men and women in charge of the health and physical education programs in their respective counties. The conference is all about adding to your toolbox while networking and allowing people that you may have communicated with put a face to your name. VAHPERD is a conference all about helping you as a teacher, which in turn helps the students both inside the classroom and out. Each time going you learn new things and keep up to date with new concepts. This conference is nothing but a benefit for all in the physical and health education and dance world.
The VAHPERD convention is a professional convention that educators attend presentations that advocate quality programs in health, physical education, recreation, dance, and sport. The best professionals in their respective departments lead these presentations. During the presentations the presenters demonstrate new and upcoming techniques, games, and activities and show first hand what they should look like. They also provide the necessary materials to those attending the presentation that way we are able to take those materials and strategies and implement them into our classroom. There is also a room full or exhibits that show different materials and opportunities available on the market for the HARK departments.
Amanda visits vendor Omnikin after attending a session they presented
Attending the VAHPERD conference allowed me to network with others in my profession about anything from lesson plans, discipline techniques, new equipment, and possible job opportunities once I graduate. I was fortunate enough to sit down with an elementary school physical education teacher from Nottoway County to discuss the website that my colleagues (Trisha Causin, Erin Neal, and Stephen Shockley) and I are creating. The goal of our website is to give classroom school teachers active ways to teach and reinforce the standards of learning for Mathematics, Science, Language Arts, and History.
In the Omnikin session, the presenter explained and demonstrated many different games that elementary-aged students can play that incorporate classroom SOL’s. Some of the games incorporated the planets, food chains, Jamestown, and math skills. The presenter provided everyone with handouts or emails after the conference with all the instructions for the games. I also took pictures to remember the set-up of each game. I really liked this session because it reassured that I know how to incorporate classroom SOL’s.
Williamsburg, VA: November 7-9, 2013
Graduate students from the School Library Media program attended the Virginia Association of School Librarians (VAASL) Conference in Williamsburg, Virginia from November 7-9, 2013. The conference theme was "Libraries as Knowledge Builders". They were joined by their Longwood faculty, Dr. Audrey Church, Ms. Frances Reeve, and Mrs. Karla Collins who also participated in a book cart drill team competition with colleagues from ODU and VCU.
In her presentation Jennifer LaGarde spoke of using computers and video cams to have "Mystery Skypes" with various people in areas that are vastly different than her students. Students had to ask the mystery Skyper questions in order to determine what he or she does for a living. I felt very inspired by her presentation because she spoke to the very reason that I want to become a librarian. It’s not just about the books (although I still love them) it’s about the fact that the library can be such a flexible place. The library is about learning and applying knowledge for authentic purposes.
I came away with information overload and excited about the library and library activities. I had the privilege of listening and learning from some of the best and brightest librarians, authors, and leaders in the librarian field. I attended 16 different sessions that provided me with a wealth of information and ideas that I have already started sharing with our staff and students.
The biggest benefit I get from attending the conference is the huge opportunity for me to take a moment and get up-to-date on what is happening now in the world of librarians and reading.
Outside of the sessions, some of the highlights for me were the keynote speakers, the Book Cart Drill teams, the children’s authors, and the president’s reception. Visiting with vendors brought some unexpected surprises. I had a chance to meet Farmer Minor and hug Daisy, the 150 pound pot belly pig. ABDO gave out a beautiful hardcover book to those who stopped by to select one. Authors were present to sign books and I was delighted to get a novel by Kate Klise and have it signed by her!
One session that I attended was given by a librarian that decided to write a biography on an unknown Civil Rights trailblazer who initiated a sit-in years before the Civil Rights Movement. She shared insights into how she got started with her research and provided every attendee with a free copy of her book!
My 21st century technology skills were enhanced by learning how to create Animoto videos. From another session, not only do I have a list of excellent multicultural picture books and chapter books to add to the library collection but a technology tool, Padlet, to engage students in conversation about characters from all over the world.
I found two of the sessions I attended to be particularly helpful. One session was about keeping library services available even when the library is closed due to testing. The second session I found to be extremely interesting was about a little known Virginia pioneer on Civil Rights. His name was Samuel Tucker. He will make a great addition to 7th grade U.S history studies.
I got great practical tips from Jennifer LaGarde who was also our keynote speaker. She emphasized collaboration, creativity, communication and critical thinking. I left her session feeling rejuvenated and ready to work with as many teachers and students as possible. The last day I sat in on three author sessions. It was great to interact with them and get their perspectives on what they do. I look forward to sharing my experiences with the students and hopefully bring one of the authors for a visit in the future. I loved the conference and look forward to going back next year!
Jessica M. Heising
Author Sarah Dessen and Jessica Heising
I spent one session learning writing techniques with Sarah Dessen, the popular Young Adult Lit author. Ms. Dessen shared her writing process, as well as the realities of becoming a writer. She gave those in attendance some useful ideas in how to help our students develop their writing talents.
There were quite a few things that I took away from the conference. One that surprised me the most was that authors are extremely down to earth. I had the pleasure to interact with four different authors during the conference. They were: Sarah Dessen, Gigi Ameteau, Meg Medina and Bentley Boyd. The other thing I took from the conference is the many wonderful things that are being done throughout the state! I look forward to attending the conference again next year. I will be done with my degree, so hopefully, it will be as a practicing librarian!
It was really nice to talk with librarians about the ideas they have for making the library a better place. It is one thing learning best practices in class but it is very nice to see best practices in action. The first timer’s breakfast was a great way to start my day and I really enjoyed the author banquet with Sarah Dessen. I will definitely go again next year even if it’s not a class requirement. It is a great way to connect with other librarians and get new ideas!
I learned so much useful and applicable information that I could not only take back to my school and classroom, but also that I could incorporate as a librarian in the future. I attended sessions geared towards new librarians with great tips and advice, the first timers breakfast where I got to meet other new attendees, the entertaining book cart team drill with the professors from Longwood performing, and an author luncheon with Kate Kliss. By attending the VAASL conference I not only gained relevant information and tools, but also a great group of colleagues that I look forward to working with and seeing again next year at the conference.
This was my first library conference and I’m hooked! Almost every single session I attended I was able to leave with something I could use. Not only could I use it in the library, it could be used in my classroom. Listening to author Ann Westrick share with the teachers of Carver Middle School made me realize I’d love to be a Middle School Librarian!
The second session I attended was about bullying. Meg Medina, a local author, wrote a book that even has humor in its title, Yaqui Delgado Wants to Kick Your Ass. This book would be great for all of our students, but especially for our Hispanic girls. I would love to get copies of this book and have a book club with some of my former mentees, many of whom are Hispanic. The book addresses issues that are real to them, and it encourages the importance of education in learning how to deal with conflicts. I know Mrs. Medina would also come speak to the group about her book and being raised by a single Hispanic woman.
Mary L. Sutterluety
My favorite session was Audrey Church’s Top 10 Topics and Trends presentation. I found that her recommendations for the Nonfiction/Informational Text will prove to be invaluable in my school. I also plan on joining one or two professional communities that Audrey advertised, specifically Connected Educators and EdWeb.
As a student in the Graduate Studies Program at Longwood University, I continually learn how to advance in my career. I attended many sessions, one of which was Dr. Audrey Church "Top Ten Trends of 2013." This session had a wonderful handout as well as explanations about each of the ten trends and at least three examples for each.
A session titled "Read, Write, Recommend: Blogging as a 'Novel' Tool to Engage Student Readers" really sparked my enthusiasm and got me thinking about all the ways I could use it in our school library. In this session we learned about three programs that could be used for safe and secure online blogging with the students. Edublogs.org… allows students a place where they can submit their work for review and critique by others, express their opinions, think critically, reflect on their learning, and collaborate with others, both in and out of our school.
This year’s VAASL Conference was a great opportunity to acquaint myself with the library world outside of my school library. I enjoyed networking with other librarians from within my school system in a setting other than the usual work day. I also had the opportunity to make new friends in the library world. The atmosphere was professional but very relaxed and there was so much to see and learn. I really liked how the presenters of the sessions I attended were either professors or other school librarians.
I enjoyed Jennifer LaGarde's presentation on "How to Survive the Zombie Librarian Apocalypse". The information she presented was inspiring and captivating just like our libraries should be.
This was my first opportunity to attend a VAASL Conference and I enjoyed every minute. The session I most enjoyed and found the most beneficial to my current subject area was "2013 Best Apps for Teaching and Learning." Thank you for a well thought out weekend. It was convenient to have so many options to choose from. In conjunction with my colleague, we were able to plan and decide who attended what session so that we could get as much information as possible to share. We are already making plans to attend the 2014 conference next year!
Hot Springs, VA: November 7-9, 2013
Joanne Paek: Received an Award
I was privileged to be recognized and receive the Virginia Counselors Association Foundation Graduate Student Fellowship award and was honored to receive this award not only on behalf of myself, but also as a representative of Longwood University.
The conference was wonderful. It was an excellent opportunity to spend time with my classmates and professors outside of the classroom, and also meet many other professionals in the counseling field. I attended some very informative sessions, and especially enjoyed and appreciated the presentation highlighting how to approach a counseling scenario from multiple theoretical orientations. I would highly encourage all students in the Counselor Education program to consider attending the conference next year. It was definitely an experience not to be missed.
Going to the VCA conference helped me determine that I would like to be a Career Development Counselor after obtaining my Master’s degree. During one of the sessions on career development, I was able to meet many career development counselors. At the VCA conference I gained connections and information from working professionals in the field of career development. Gaining these connections will help me further my knowledge about the field of counseling I am going to pursue and give me internship options when the time comes.
The presenters of the breakout sessions were impressive, and offered a wide array of topics, from understanding psychiatric medications to working with college students who have experienced trauma. Perhaps the most exciting part of the convention, however, was having the opportunity to interact one-on-one with so many talented and experienced members of the counseling field. I feel that this experience provided me with information I can use immediately to help my clients, and also helped me make meaningful connections with other counselors I may be fortunate enough to work with in the future.
I was able to listen to Trevor Romain’s journey to the professional world of school counseling through his personal stories and experiences. To add to this experience, Trevor Romain posed in a picture with Longwood students! This was truly a remarkable experience that I will cherish, and I am glad that I shared this experience with fellow classmates. In addition, I would like to thank professors Dr. Kevin Doyle and Dr. Phyllis Jones for hosting a Counselor Education Program Reception for Longwood students, faculty, and alumni. Not only was an opportunity to promote Longwood’s counseling program and get our name out there, but it also allowed us the opportunity to re-connect with classmates and alumni. As a result of attending the conference, I was given insight to the benefits of switching from the Community and College Counseling track to the Mental Health Counseling track to obtain LPC licensure. This experience truly impacted my decisions as they relate to my educational and career goals.
Chelsea Carroll, VCA President Dr. Edward Magalhaes, and Ashlie Robertson
My favorite part of the whole conference was our plethora of break-out sessions. I, upon agreeing to go to the conference, was a little unsure as to what I wanted to do in regards to counseling. After going to these break-out sessions, I have finalized my path and believe that I have begun building my skill set and getting a head start on this process. After our first full day of sessions, we had a "get to know you" session where we went from hotel suite to hotel suite and met with members of specific organizations within the VCA, such as the Roanoke Counselors Association and the Virginia Association of School Counselors. It was fun to socialize with other counselors and get to know them not only professionally, but personally. The night ended with a meet-up in the President’s suite, where we got to know several other graduate students and the President himself.
I was able to attend Trevor Romain’s talk, "The Art of Caring", he spoke about several things including: speaking to kids in their own language, how to listen to what children are asking for, using humor, helping kids reach adults and helping adults reach kids, teaching children compassion, and reminding you to take care of yourself. The venue was beautiful and the company superb. We had a wonderful 1st annual Longwood Reception and enjoyed food, drink and shared experiences.
Laura Hamlette: Presented with Dr. Doyle
It was really nice meeting Longwood alumni prospering in our field. The theme for the conference this year was "Refresh, Renew, and Revitalize Your Professional Repertoire." I feel that this is exactly what was happening! I met a lot of people who were so excited to see so many new faces entering the counseling field. Some, including Dr. Edward Magalhaes, the VCA President, were most impressed by the strong showing of Longwood students and how excited we are about our program and our school. I feel very privileged to have been afforded the opportunity to present with Dr. Kevin Doyle on Collegiate Recovery Communities. Our presentation was well attended with a high level of participation. It was very exciting and inspiring for me.
Williamsburg, VA: October 25-26, 2013
The 2013 VATE conference in Williamsburg was one of the most delightful educational experiences of my graduate career. It took me out of the classroom and exposed me to real world problems that English teachers in Virginia face, and it gave me the opportunity to listen in on how these problems were being addressed. The conference provided workshops that covered topics such as teaching strategies, literary genres, writing instruction, and many others. For me, the most beneficial workshops that I attended revolved around teaching strategies that help to engage students and make the content more real and exciting for them.
Itasca, Illinois: Aug 12-15, 2013
Lori Donovan earned her Master's degree from Longwood University in 2005 with a concentration in School Library Media and returned to Longwood for a second Master's program in Educational Leadership last Spring. She is currently pursuing an endorsement in Educational Leadership while she continues her position as Instructional Specialist in Library Services for Chesterfield County Public Schools. Combining all her experiences and graduate coursework, Lori was one of only 40 selected from a pool of 300 applicants to attend the American Library Association's inaugural leadership institute this past summer. She shared that the ALA Leadership Institute was an amazing experience of four intense, hands-on days delving into qualities of leadership and how to apply that in various professions. Lori attended with 39 other librarians who came together from all over the country and Canada. They represented positions from school, public, academic, and special libraries and found that no matter what library they were in, they had many of the same issues and concerns. The group will remain connected through an email list-serv and a Facebook page they created.