As I write this, I’m sitting in the Indiana Convention Center for MPI’s 2018 World Education Congress. What an amazing experience. My hometown is definitely putting on a good show for everyone, complete with perfect weather and a warm, Hoosier hospitality welcome!

This year, WEC introduced a new design concept with four separate villages: social, innovation, leadership and experiential. Attendees can choose from a variety of education sessions that range in length. Huddles and assemblies are held within the villages, while the longer workshops are in separate meeting spaces. Throughout the villages are suppliers and activities, making for a completely dynamic experience. You can listen to a speaker, connect with colleagues, snuggle with puppies, participate in a little CSR activity and pick up information on meeting destinations all in one huge space. The education sessions are covering very timely subjects, and I’m loving the event app with polls and social-media capabilities, as well as the pep rallies that keep the energy in the crowd up.

At today’s news conference, preliminary numbers were released along with news on MPI’s plans moving forward in 2018 and beyond:

  • 2,200 attendees are in attendance
  • Attendees are about 50% planners and 50% suppliers
  • 250 chapter leaders are in attendance
  • Individuals are here from 35 countries
  • 1,000 individuals are attending the conference online through MPI’s virtual pass
  • MPI is partnering with NYU for a survey on inclusivity, with the goal of creating a new inclusivity certificate program
  • MPI has published an essential guide to safety and security, which includes 400 best practices; it’s free for MPI members and $49 for nonmembers

Are you attending, as well? What has your experience been like?

The PCMA Education Foundation Leadership Committee has elected its 2019 Board of Trustees. Officers and trustees will take office immediately following PCMA’s annual meeting at the 63rd Convening Leaders in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in January 2019.

Convening Leaders 2019 will take place Jan. 6 - 9 in the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

 

The calendar might still say 2018, but meeting professionals know it’s time to start planning for 2019 events. One of the biggest decisions always lies in where to host destination conferences. The best way to help narrow down a city? Take inspiration from the best of 2018.

 

This is the fourth year in a row that I’ve helped with the Colorado Governor’s Tourism Conference and the 12th that I’ve attended. Nothing beats meeting face-to face, seeing friends and colleagues from around the state and beyond, and experiencing great Colorado destinations like Vail.