Posted June 19, 2013 by Juhi Bhatt 

Presenting at a NASPA Regional Conference

Earlier this month, I had the privilege of attending and presenting at the NASPA Region II conference at John Jay College in New York. This was the first regional conference I attended for NASPA, and it was my first time presenting in any capacity. Suffice to say, the experience was more than what I can even put into words.

For this conference, I had submitted an idea for the poster session part of the conference. To my great surprise, my proposal was accepted, and I was able to showcase my poster: “The Acculturation Process for Immigrant Students.” Now, it would have been enough to just say that I had the honor of having my work shown at the conference, but in addition to that, I have colleagues in the field speaking to me about my work and wanting to “chat” at a later date.

It is moments like these that can help build lasting relationships. I was never one to think that attending conferences could be life altering, but I am starting to realize that I assumed incorrectly. Conferences provide so many ways to connect and network with fellow colleagues whether it be for support, institutional ideas, and/or future career endeavors.

NASPA’s conference also provided me with the opportunity to finally meet some of the people whose names I had heard within the field. To be able to now have a working relationship with seasoned professionals as a new professional in the field is an opportunity that can only help me grow as a student affairs professional.

Ultimately, I am able to utilize the ideas I pick up not only from the educational sessions I attend, but also from the discussions I have with fellow colleagues in the field.

What do you get out of attending and/or presenting at conferences?

Juhi Bhatt

Juhi Bhatt is the Coordinator of Judicial Affairs and Student Information at Bergen Community College.

Juhi works between the Center for Student Success as a career and transfer counselor and a judicial affairs coordinator within the Office of Student Life and Judicial Affairs. Additionally, she manages the information desk within the new Student Center.

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