ACPA is becoming one of the most "corporate friendly" associations out there. We really have good corporate friends that truly care about the work we are doing on our respective campuses. Let me first start by saying I cannot name them all. It isn't that I really can't name them all, it is that the moment I name one (or five) than I will have left off a few others. So rather than name companies, I will just talk about six people that I think are just awesome and the reason ACPA has become so corporate friendly. Lets call my buddies Howie, Teri, Andy, David, Bill, and Doug.
Now please, do not confuse these names with people you might think they are since that would be unfair to the real people they are. These are just names of people that I made up (for purposes of this blog). They also happen to care about the work we do. Let me share a few stories.
Last year at the Metro DC convention we had record participation in the Exhibits area. Not only were they great corporate partners, these were committed colleagues supporting the work we do. The fact that they were there, paying to be there, to support our work should tell us something. It is impressive when members of the association "make" time to visit with our corporate partners. We really should do that more. Think of all the things one can learn from walking the exhibit area, such as what new products or books are available or the latest trends in technology that supports our departments on campus. For the serious professional who wants to stay ahead of the game it helps to see the playbook. That playbook is the exhibit area. Our corporate buddies made that event happen.
Last year at Metro DC we had socials and activities that supported the work of our membership and corporate friends. Many of these activities were funded by our corporate partners and these were activities our membership participated in and enjoyed. I cannot imagine a convention without the presence of some of the companies we could easily take for granted if we were not more careful. Remember, I won't say the corporate names, but a convention without Howie, Teri, Andy, David, Bill, and Doug wouldn't be much fun.
Just recently one of my best friends, lets call him Andy, set up meetings for us so we could try and become new best friends with another corporate buddy. My bud Andy didn't have to do that, but he did it because he is committed to our student development work. ** I sound like my daughter telling me stories about her girlfriends at school! **
I always knew some of our research and programs were funded through the generous gifts of many people, including our corporate friends. It is amazing what generosity we have in our corporate buddies. Just a couple of years ago one of my other best friends stepped up and supported one of our signature institutes. This type of help really makes a difference. Not only does it help lower the costs to each of us (as practitioners and universities) but it also enables the association to advance our work in other ways and in other places.
Now my absolute "bestest" friend (as my daughter might say) is Teri. If Santa were a corporate friend they would rename him to Teri. Not only is this buddy full of ideas, she acts on those ideas. ACPA is so much better as an association because of her passionate work behind the scenes. She really makes a difference and is always finding ways to keep us progressive and foresightful.
ACPA is really fortunate to have such wonderful best friends. Next time you are at a convention and you happen to see a name tag on someone "looking" the corporate buddy type, slap your arm around them, thank them, and say, "Hi, I am ACPA and I am your other best friend." Weeeee.
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