I imagine everyone has his or her own strategy when it comes to the Public Health Expo. I don't want to miss anything, so I usually start with the far right row and loop my way up and down every aisle. This also maximizes the opportunity for free goodies and giveaways — and I love a good pen and a strong magnet.
Other folks know exactly what they're looking for and make a beeline for their favorite group of booths. Or you might walk straight through, trying your best to resist all the shiny public health goodness, to get to the wealth of fascinating poster sessions hosted at the back of the expo hall. Some take the wanderlust approach and go where their fancies take them. While others can be seen standing at the expo entrance, entranced with the overflowing choices and trying to figure out where to go first.
One thing's for sure though: With more than 600 booths of public health information, resources and products, no one leaves empty-handed or without a new idea or two. (Plus, the expo is a great way to get a little walk into your schedule without leaving the convention center.)
The offerings at the Public Health Expo are as diverse as public health itself, from schools of public health to state and federal public health agencies to public health nonprofit groups. There's also book publishers, technology and public health promotion vendors, health consultants, community and environmental health groups, laboratory and clinical services, international health organizations, and APHA's many Sections, Special Primary Interest Groups, Caucuses and the Student Assembly. Believe me, this short list does not do the expo justice. (And if you don’t believe me, here’s what NPR’s Shots Blog reported from last year’s exposition.)
At the center of the expo hall, you'll find Everything APHA, your source for...well, everything APHA. It includes APHA Press, where you'll find APHA books and publications as well as T-shirts and other souvenirs; Public Health CareerMart, where job seekers and employers can submit resumes and job announcements online (job seekers can also sign up for a private career coaching session); and APHA Membership, where you can update your membership record and meet APHA membership staff. Everything APHA will also host a handful of book signings Sunday through Tuesday of the 140th APHA Annual Meeting.
And don't forget to stop by APHA's Get Ready booth, where you can ooohhh and aaawww at the winners of APHA's Preparedness Cats Photo Contest and see which cute kitties landed a spot in the 2013 Get Ready calendar.
For more on this year's Public Health Expo, which opens its doors immediately following the opening session on Sunday, Oct. 28, visit www.apha.org/meetings/exposition.
At top, an aerial pic of the 2011 Public Health Expo in Washington, D.C. Photo courtesy EZ Event Photography.