Making Friends, Confidants and Memories

Some memories are made of once-in-a-lifetime moments; others are lifetimes in the making, such as summer trips to the beach, with each year creating fresh memories.

Memories of SLA Annual Conferences fall into the latter category. The conference, the premier education and networking event for special librarians and information professionals, creates lasting memories each year, as these SLA members can attest:

Jeff Bond, Texas Christian University: “At my first SLA conference, I attended a lunch for first-time attendees and some leaders in the Physics-Astronomy-Mathematics Division. I will always remember that lunch. Going into the conference, I didn’t know many SLA members, [but] at that lunch I immediately found friends and colleagues that I would see throughout the conference. Many of these same people I still know today, and they have become confidants and longtime friends.”

Anne Barker, Genentech: “[My favorite] personal moment was just last year, when I joined a few SLAers for a private cider bottle share and we talked about the cost of housing, particularly as related to the marked influx of tech workers to Pittsburgh, job woes and triumphs, and about SLA past, present, and future. What was supposed to be my one early bedtime night turned into my latest as we talked until the wee hours.”

Catherine Lavallée-Welch, Bishop’s University: “My first conference was Nashville in 2004. I met a person who became a great friend and my SLA roomie ever since. I also learned of the awesome open houses and receptions where networking is at its best. 2014 in Vancouver was special, too, because we were back in Canada. That’s also when I had the great honor to be made an SLA Fellow. There’s something very special about being recognized by your peers, even though for me, getting involved and trying to serve my organization comes very naturally.”

David Stern, Saint Xavier University: “At my very first SLA Annual Conference, I walked into the Astronomy Roundtable session, a newbie in every way. An hour later, I had made meaningful connections with some of the most interesting, knowledgeable, and friendly people I have ever met in my life. I was made to feel welcome, important, and included in this community. I was even invited to write an article for a journal. I have always striven to return that same attitude and that same gracious generosity.”

Want to make new friends while also discussing the latest issues and trends affecting your job and career? Register now for the SLA 2020 Annual Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina—and start planning to make some memories of your own.

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