Communicating and Connecting with Colleagues, Immediate Past Chair, Arlene Russell, Fall 2012

This issue of the Newsletter marks the beginning of our second year of electronic publication of the Division Newsletter and along with it, the ability to rapidly communicate to you happenings and activities of interest to Division members. There is no more visible example of the changing patterns of obtaining information than the decision of The Journal of Chemical Education—the other publication arm of the Division—to transfer its News and Announcements section to the Division website. We have become impatient; News and Announcements can’t wait a month we want to know now! Postings of your announcements happen the next day! Being part of this transition to rapid dissemination has been an exciting component of the past three years as I have served in the Chair-succession role.

Communicating electronically, however, doesn’t stop with information in the Newsletter and website. The creativity of our members in using technology in their courses is spilling over into your needs to show colleagues what you are doing at meetings. This is not new! When the ACS was still providing slide projectors, the Division told ACS we needed LED projectors. Others cam around and LED projectors are now standard fare. The current argument, however, is for Internet access in all our meeting rooms, both for presentations and committees. While we have not won the battle yet with the National meeting organizers, our Executive Committee has decided to provide the resources for committees to teleconference to members who may not physically be at a meeting. Vicki Williamson pioneered this approach last fall with the Chem Ed Research Committee in Denver. Her Committee report in the San Diego Executive Committee agenda discussed the trial. Although there were some problems, we are resolved to overcome them and not look backwards. Teleconferencing will continue. We have a small reprieve this summer. With almost 20% of the Division members attending the BCCE at Penn State, most committees will meet there instead of in Philadelphia. Nonetheless, in the future, we hope that inopportune timing of National Meetings or lack of resources to attend meetings does not preclude you from being actively involved in the Division. Please look at the many committees that serve the activities of the Division. Meetings are open – drop in on any of interest to you if you are at the BCCE. Nominate yourself: the link, “Get Involved” is found on the website under the “Members” button on the top ribbon of the Division homepage. Don’t just belong to the Division, be part of it. Make the Division your colleagues—you will find many who share your concerns and are interested in what you are doing.

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