As always, our lineup of speakers includes key presenters on a wide range of topics. Friday’s speakers will present all day, but new this year, the morning sessions and afternoon sessions will be self-contained talks. This means that you can switch speakers at mid-day if you like, and still get the value of a full treatment of both topics you attend, and you will be able to claim full CE credit for both sessions. This member-requested feature is a welcome addition to the Conference. Friday evening will showcase poster and technical sessions, with the opportunity for substantial interaction with multiple authors/presenters. Saturday’s speakers will draw from a wide range of local and regional professionals, with 3-hour morning talks and two 90-minute sessions in the afternoon.
We will continue to hold our annual Silent Auction on Friday. Look for framed art, handmade jewelry, gift certificates and other prizes, and visit the tables often to participate in the bidding. Winners will be announced during the reception on Friday Evening. Remember – it’s not too late to donate an item to the silent auction, and anyone who gives a donation worth $50 or more will be entered into a drawing for a free registration at next year’s OSHA Conference!
Friday’s lunch will feature OSHA’s Awards Presentations, including student awards to a graduate student at each of Oregon’s three graduate training programs. Funding for these awards comes largely from the 50/50 raffle, led each year by OSHA Past Presidents. We will have a social lunch on Saturday this year, with abundant opportunities to reconnect with your friends and colleagues. We firmly believe in the need to have time and space to maintain and develop professional relationships, and that a significant part of the Conference’s value lies in building bridges through informal, agenda-free conversations.
This year, we are greatly pleased to be able to offer several new features to enhance communication in our professional community. During Friday morning's breakfast, OSHA will host a set of Roundtable Discussions on a variety of topics. Each table will have a topic host who is interested in sharing information and hearing perspectives from across the state to help guide next steps. So find a topic of interest to you, pull up a chair, and add your voice to the discussion.
OSHA, together with the three graduate SLP training programs in Oregon, will be hosting an Oregon Open House during the ASHA Convention this year. This Open House will be on Friday, November 13, from 8:30-11:00 PM, at the Convention facility in Denver. Because the Convention is in the Western Region this year, OSHA will be able to raffle off a Free Registration to the 2015 ASHA Convention. If you haven’t already registered for ASHA, winning this raffle could spur you on to Denver. And if you already registered for ASHA, don’t worry – the winner will be able to get reimbursed for registration fees they have already paid.
As you might have heard, the Oregon Communicator Podcast launched over the summer. It is available for free streaming or download at Libsyn, and you can stream, download, or subscribe to the podcast for free at iTunes or Stitcher. At the conference, you can find podcast host (and 2015 OSHA President) Andy McMillin and add your ideas for topics to cover as the show moves forward.
We will be making an announcement about a significant new event that OSHA will be adding in 2016. This event has been several years in the making, and it will help to address an area of substantial need across the state. Be sure to register for the Conference, where the details will be announced!
Finally, we are pleased to be able to bring one of this year’s signature initiatives to the conference. Many of you have attended PubNight in one of the many cities across the state currently hosting these monthly gatherings. In this coming year, we will be partnering with the Oregon PT Association (OPTA), and the OT Association of Oregon (OTAO) on a campaign to increase the reach and the impact of these popular events. In addition, we are pleased to host a Special PubNight on Thursday evening, October 8, starting at 5:30 PM in the lobby of the Red Lion Hotel – Jantzen Beach. This will be our only opportunity this year to gather with colleagues from across the entire state in a low-key, casual environment where ideas and relationships can emerge through the simple act of interpersonal interaction. So if you are coming from outside of Portland, consider arriving on Thursday to stop by PubNight in the evening. And if you are already in the Portland area, please come up to Jantzen Beach on Thursday to Join the Conversation.