If I am elected Chairperson, I would like to see some of the energy of the steering committee be directed to increasing student membership and creating stronger relations with the existing student membership. While I know there are many students who join AOTA because they want to be apart of their national professional organization, there are probably just as many that join only because they have to or don't join all together. I think there needs to be more efforts made to reach out to students and get them to become members because of all the resources that are availble to them. With that being said, I think there also needs to be an increased presence from the ASD to make this happen and reach out to each individual school to promote AOTA involvement.
Likewise, I think that we need to work on our communication methods as it seems that not all members are getting the messages. For example, this year the ASD application deadline had to be extended because there were not enough students running and I would guess that was in part because the students didn't know. It was not until the deadline was extended that I received information about this opportunity from my department chair, even though I have been a member. Personally, I think that there should have been emails going out to the student membership to start publicizing this opportunity and getting the information out there months in advance. If elected, I would work with the rest of the steering committee to make ASD more present with our student membership and assure that information is actually reaching the students.
I will add in regards to candidate information, too. There are some of you who do both OT Connections and Facebook, which is nice. But, there are some of you who do neither. For future years, I believe each candidate has to do one or the other.
Of course, I also agree with the communication issue. I remembered the advocacy chat Laura and I were on the other day. It was so last minute. Moreover, I only found this out because I am friends with a good bit of the current ASD Steering Committee folks on Facebook. That is not acceptable. As much as OT connections and even Facebook are great, we have to use multiple means to get the message across. Sometimes, even with the old fashioned email. I have never been to an ASD meeting before in AOTA, but I believe you guys should have the contacts of the ASD reps for the schools represented. Send an email to these folks whenever there's something brewing in ASD Steering Committee. Of course, for the folks who are running next year, it might be great to give those folks that list, too.
As for AOTA involvement, the chat last time with Amy Lamb was excellent. Unfortunately, because of time zone differences, these are not the easiest to coordinate. So, why not take a page out of our counterparts in the UK and lead some Twitter chats? Those chats are good because they have a collection of professionals and students! Also, if you look at the "ask the general election candidates" blog, I am the only student who made comment after comment. This is not the way it's supposed to be. I believe more of us should read what the candidates have to say and make our two cents. We are part of the next generation, and an election year like this is very important in AOTA. Hence, more students beside me should make our presences known!
I hope this doesn't sound dumb but by this post did you mean me Laura. I am confused by what you are trying to say for the first three sentences. Also, if I did something incorrectly?!
Hey Laura, I was just referring to the AOTPAC chat we had with Amy Lamb a few weeks ago. It was a great chat. But, I was using this as an example because had I not been friends with some current ASD Steering Committee people on Facebook, I would not have found this out. Moreover, it's so last minute, I think the word was spread about a week before in the places I got the information from. Therefore, my intent was just highlighting that AOTPAC chat we had as an example in regards to the communication issue. In other words, it's nothing personal.