Friday, October 25, 2013

The social network

Sure, the APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition is known for its science. But there's much more to the world's largest public health gathering than PowerPoint presentations and data-driven discussions.

The Annual Meeting is also a time of celebration, socializing and, yes, having some fun. So here are just a few ways to get your public health party on.

• What's a party without prizes? Stop by APHA's Public Health Awards Reception and Ceremony on Tuesday, Nov. 5, from 6-8:30 p.m. at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center to celebrate the achievements of some the best and brightest in public health (and enjoy some tasty refreshments).

• Want to learn more about APHA's many membership groups and meet folks with similar public health interests? Then check out the many social gatherings and award ceremonies being hosted by APHA's Sections, Special Primary Interest Groups, Forums, Caucuses and the Student Assembly. For example, the Population, Reproductive and Sexual Health Section will host a Meet and Greet & Welcome Reception on Sunday night, the Black Caucus of Health Workers will host a Student Networking Reception on Monday night, and all are welcome to the Ethics SPIG's member meeting on Tuesday night. (There will be a listing of APHA membership group gatherings in the back of the Annual Meeting program that you'll receive in Boston.)

• Make some time in your scientific session schedule to browse the hundreds of booths at the Public Health Expo, a cornucopia of public health goodies and information. The expo, which will officially open its doors in the convention center on Sunday, Nov. 3, at 2 p.m., is pretty much the public health equivalent of the Mall of America. There'll be schools of public health, public health publishers, state and federal public health agencies, public health product makers, public health nonprofits and advocacy organizations, APHA membership groups and, of course, Everything APHA, where you can browse APHA publications, check out APHA CareerMart, pick up official Annual Meeting souvenirs and much more.

• If there's one tip this blogger has for an Annual Meeting newbie, it's this: Bring comfortable shoes. The APHA meeting is huge, both in content and square feet. Still, you're gonna need a rest, so grab a seat and meet a new friend at the Mix and Mingle Lounge, which will be located in the north lobby of the convention center. (Plus, free WiFi!)

• And for all you folks who'll be capturing your Annual Meeting good times via Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and other assorted cyberspace social clubs, RSVP for this year's APHA Social Media Meetup hosted by APHA's Social Media Team on Sunday night.

Of course, this year's Annual Meeting is in Boston — a huge, thriving metropolis with tons to keep you entertained after the last PowerPoint presentation of the day. For more on what to see, eat and enjoy in one of the nation's most historic cities, visit the City of Boston.

— K.K.

No comments: