WALI and NASPSPA, June 2017
June is the month of conferences for me. The purpose of The North American Society for the Psychology of Sport and Physical Activity (NASPSPA) is to develop and advance the study of Motor Behavior (development, learning, and control) and Sport and Exercise Psychology.
This is one of the key organizations for the field in which I received my Ph.D. This was the 50th Anniversary for this organization and a celebration along with the typical conference was held at the Catamaran Resort in San Diego. I had three poster presentations accepted to this conference, all of which were collaborations with my senior students.
The second conference I attended was the CCCU organized Women’s Advanced Leadership Institute. This was held at a Cedar Springs conference center in Sumas, Washington. I was able to attend this conference due to the support of Dr. O’Quinn and her ability to convince them to accept me into the advanced institute without attending the beginners one!
THINGS I LEARNED FROM NASPSPA
I have not been to San Diego at the beach for a long time and I have rarely stayed by the beach, so I did not know that it was cloudy all day plus chilly in June. I intended to get some relaxation time in the beach chairs while reading by Faculty Gathering book, but it was too cold. That is my excuse for not reading my book! I learned that running an effective conference takes a lot of work.
My posters were well accepted and the titles were: The Effects of Social Media Accounts on Exercise Motivations; Diving Deeper into Essential Oils; Body Satisfaction and Self-Efficacy of Middle-Aged, Active Women. I attended presentations made by former students, colleagues, and one of my Ph.D. advisors so it was good to see how we have all stayed active in our profession although I am the only one from a small, private university.
PROFESSORS HAVE ISSUES TOO
Just because you have a Ph.D. does not mean you come drama free. This was the exact sentence I wrote in my last blog (from another conference). It has not changed. This time, I used my counseling skills to run interference and give advice to two professors at two large universities. When I have these types of opportunities to speak rational thinking or wisdom, it is an opportunity to remind myself and [when I can] others of the Grace of God and the Friend and Savior He can be.
RESEARCH TOPICS IN SPORT/EXERCISES PSYCHOLOGY AND NOT MOTOR CONTROL
The benefit of having few resources, time, money, space, grad programs….is the research that can be done is applied and is relatable to everyone. This then attracts interesting people to your poster to talk to you. Best story…an older woman was interested in my poster about middle-aged women; after reading she asked me a few questions and then said: “You have great energy, I am a psychic, can I give you a reading?”
My response: Well, I am a Christian, so I don’t know how well those two things go together. Psychic: Oh, I believe in God, too! Me: Ok, sure. She proceeds to hold my hands and starts talking about my mom and how she sees her as being the one to wake me up and give me coffee because I have a hard time getting going…and I’m like: no, not really, don’t drink coffee and my mom never had to get me up (pretty much the opposite when she lived with me); so she keeps going and then she holds my arms and gets the “shivers.”
Psychic: wow the spirit is so strong in you; Me: yes; P: Your mom loves Jesus more now in Heaven than she did when she was here…Me: Yes, that is true. First thing she got right! Tickled me because, really, who else goes to an academic conference and gets a reading from a psychic?! Nice that she recognized the power of the Holy Spirit, that my Mom loves Jesus, and I didn’t have to give her ten bucks.
I am impressed and excited each time I attend a conference, learn new things and get to network. Spent time networking with my colleagues; one from Concordia, one from Texas AM, and we had a great time talking shop. This is what I miss sometimes in my smaller department. I also found a great vegan cinnamon roll shop and a taco shop in Pacific Beach that I would live at if I lived down there. Good thing I don’t since I gained two pounds.
THINGS I LEARNED FROM WALI
Well, nothing nearly as exciting as a psychic reading happened but more powerful things happened. It was nice to attend a conference where my only job was to learn and eat. I accomplished both goals! It was great to hear and learn from strong female leaders that have advanced in higher education. I learned strategies to use to help lead change. I met women from other institutions from across the country and, hopefully, will run into them again.
The setting was very peaceful and pretty, even though it was a bit cloudy and chilly. I was able to walk/hike during the break time and enjoy a few sites of nature. I also learned that you can walk to Canada when my phone pinged and alerted me that I was now in Canada and would be charged international rates! Yikes! I am very grateful to Dr. O’Quinn for giving me the opportunity to go with her and learn from her and others.