Making the Most of Professional Conferences

Posted by Matt Berringer on October 2, 2014

Professional ConferenceFor teachers and administrators alike, professional conferences and trade shows are a valuable way of keeping on top of the latest standards and best practices.

According to a January 2014 study on behalf of the Convention Industry Council, nearly 61 million people attended a professional convention or conference in the United States in 2012. Education professionals can take full advantage of conferences to exchange innovative leadership techniques and strategies. There’s no better way to network with like-minded professionals and top leaders from all over the country all in one place.

To make effective use of your time, consider these tips:

  1. Identify your goals and do your research. Before investing time and money to attend a conference, you should be clear on your goals. Do you want to gather industry insights and intelligence or acquire hands-on expertise? Do you want to meet new people in the industry and make new connections? Make sure your goals are consistent with the structure, format, and content of the particular conference.
  2. Map out a game plan. Study the conference agenda, and mark the sessions that interest you. You should also take note of the companies or attendees you most want to meet or connect with and prepare questions. If you're attending the conference with colleagues, coordinate with them to cover more sessions.
  3. Learn to educate others. The greatest value of a professional conference is the knowledge you gain. Share those resources with your colleagues.

Find a professional trade show or conference near you today! SunGard K-12 Education, which offers technological tools that can help you enhance student achievement, participates at a number of conferences throughout the year. Click here for a list of trade shows, conferences, and events at which you can connect with our team. If you’d like to schedule some time to meet with us at any of these events, please contact us at

Topics: K-12