In today’s economy, your agency has to justify every dollar spent, including the money and time spent on training and professional development. This means you may have to work even harder to attend the NRPA Annual Conference.
So if you need to gain approval for your professional development costs and travel, follow these guidelines:
1. Use the Preliminary Program to outline the sessions you plan to attend and how they will benefit your work. Select ones that are most beneficial to you, your team and your agency. Be specific and identify how sessions will allow for new opportunities for growth. (For example: If I learn more about social media I will be able to use it more effectively in my marketing efforts to build relationships among our community)
2. Congress is all about education and broadening your knowledge base. Majority of sessions earn you CEU credits. Tally up the number of CEU credits you will be granted for attending educational sessions and pre-conference workshops to help demonstrate the value gained through education and learning.
3. Review the list of Exhibitors and pinpoint any business opportunities that could develop from establishing connections with park and recreation professionals and partners.
4. If necessary, have a plan for who will cover for you while attending the event.
5. Save money on travel and overnight accommodations by booking through the official NRPA hotel room provider and by reserving your flight early. Most of the official NRPA hotels are on the shuttle route, which will also save you money on taxis or public transportation.
6. New this year, full package registrants receive two lunches and one breakfast on the Exposition show floor along with a ticket to attend the opening reception where hors d’oeuvres, dessert and drinks are provided.
7. Commit to a post-conference presentation for your team, where you’ll highlight what you learned at the NRPA Annual Conference. Tie your training to your organization’s challenges, goals and strategic plans. Share all that you learn so that others can grow and develop too.
If you have any questions or need additional information, don’t hesitate to contact NRPA at 800.626.NRPA (6772) or Customer Service.