President's Perspective Blog

AFP Summer Sessions: Providing Relevant Content and Forging Strong Connections

working at desk

Online meetings have rocketed into our lives because of the pandemic, and they’ve no doubt been a great source of discussion in your personal and professional lives.

I’m sure we’ve all said—more times than we can count—how draining video calls can sometimes be.

And yet, I find myself excited about the opportunities they bring as well.

Over the past few months, I’ve met with more chapter boards and attended so many more chapter meetings online than I would have if it were a “typical” year. The connections I have been able to forge with many of you because of these online meetings have been amazing.

Because we’ve been experimenting with online meetings and conference—and in fact developed a case study in pivoting to an online conference after our in-person AFP ICON was canceled in March—AFP is able to offer a growing number of robust educational programs online as well.

Case in point: Our AFP ICON Summer Sessions, being held this week, Aug. 4 – 6.

What I love about our new online Summer Sessions conference is that it gives us the opportunity to develop an event that is designed around what’s happening in the profession and the world. There are nine sessions covering a variety of subjects that are tailor made to address the challenges we’re facing right now. Plus, our host, Kishshana Palmer (and many thanks to her for agreeing to host!), will be talking with guests about racial equity, self-care and other timely, relevant issues. 

We’ve built in some networking time, and there’s also a conference app—another great way to meet your colleagues. Building those kinds of connections can be as important as any educational session you’ll hear.

I’m also very proud to announce that through grants from the AFP Foundation for Philanthropy, we’ve been able to offer 50 scholarships to members, some of whom have lost their jobs because of the pandemic.

So yes, we’re still getting used to online meetings and conferences, but there’s every reason to believe they are here to stay. They’ll evolve as we learn, and the benefits they provide can be immense.

There’s still time to register for our AFP ICON Summer Sessions and receive the benefits of nine sessions, incredible content and great networking opportunities. Check it out, and I hope to see you this week online!

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