Exciting news! The countdown has begun for AADE19 in Houston where we collaborate with colleagues, spark innovative ideas and raise our visibility as diabetes educators! The AADE annual conference brings together a dynamic group of dedicated diabetes educators who pride ourselves on staying current with the latest diabetes information, technologies and insights. We are on the pulse of diabetes education and innovation from the medical world, technology and research arenas and peer support communities. While valuable information is available online, the benefits of attending the outstanding AADE annual conference extends well beyond the educational aspects of the program. For me, it’s about reigniting my enthusiasm by being in the same place as my colleagues and friends who are passionate about a person-centered approach to diabetes care. It’s imperative to devote time to a shared experience away from our day-to-day lives.
Attending the annual conference is a unique opportunity to interact with the diabetes thought-leaders, researchers and those with lived experience throughout programs, educational sessions and networking events. Personally, I feel exhilarated and energized after leaving a session where I am familiar with the subject matter, yet hear it presented with a different perspective and lens. The animated discussion that follows, along with thought-provoking questions from attendees leads to “spill-over” discussions in the hallways long after the session is over! I’m inspired by the depth of knowledge graciously shared throughout the conference.
The benefits of attending AADE19 extend far beyond the educational sessions, and these benefits seem to accrue over time. Surrounding myself with other professionals, researchers and those with lived experience is invigorating! When one of us gets inspired by an idea or an experience, it motivates all of us to express ourselves and engage in future collaborations and engagement with the AADE organization.
Attending the annual conferences has provided me with unexpected opportunities and collaborations, several of which I never thought possible! While we have the ability to make connections online, there is something very special about meeting people face-to-face. Speaking to new people at the conference is a fabulous way to share ideas, showcase our skills and develop personal connections. One year while walking through the expo hall, I struck up a conversation with a woman whom I had never met. It turns out she was the executive editor of a print magazine and very interested in learning more about the expanded role of the CDE in the evolving health care landscape. We grabbed a cup of coffee and had a fabulous conversation. That friendly conversation lead to my own column in a national news magazine!
Whether you’re a first-time attendee, or returning once again, please feel free to reach out as I would LOVE to say hello and welcome! Remember to share your passion and experience during sessions, in the expo hall and during the fabulous networking events. Don’t forget to pack your boots and I’ll see ya’ll at AADE19 in Houston!