I am an Associate Fellow and active member and volunteer in the Society for Technical Communication (STC). I participate in chapter-level programs as a speaker, organizer, and meeting attendee. I am happily serving in two volunteer leadership roles at the international level.
This participation keeps me well-connected in the technical communication industry, especially with my fellow STC members and active volunteers. I always look forward to our March 2014 Mid-Atlantic Technical Communication Conference that is hosted by my “home” STC chapter: Philadelphia Metro (STC PMC). Because we get our conference venue at no charge, the biggest expense of hosting our conference is the food purchase from our venue host. As a member of STC PMC, I can attend our 2014 full-day conference for an amazing value of $45 with breakfast and lunch included.
Every year, STC hosts a highly-acclaimed international conference in May. The STC Summit is a four-day event, with optional full day and half day pre-conference sessions on Saturday and Sunday. Registration rates vary, depending on membership and date of registration. In 2014, I am one of about a dozen speakers who present 5-minute lightning talks. I presented my first lightning talk at the 2013 Mid-Atlantic Technical Communication Conference and learned how much fun I could have as a speaker. This lightning talk speaker commitment earns me a discounted registration to the international STC Summit. Participation pays!
I construct content in DITA (Darwin Information Typing Architecture), an XML data model for authoring that uses the principles of specialization and inheritance. A large assortment of DITA conferences are happening all over the globe.
One of my favorite annual conferences is LavaCon, serving the mission “To produce quality educational conferences where attendees learn innovative ways to reduce costs, generate revenue and adapt to market changes.” LavaCon 2014 offers expert training on content strategy and user experience. It’s inspiring to see so many active professionals and learn how they work without viewing the information through my usual STC lenses.
As with all industries that are experiencing massive change and growth, the technical communication conference selections are abundant. See the TechWhirl Events Calendar for a current listing.