13 August 2013
Choices, Choices, Choices at FGS 2013
Since I haven't figured out a way to clone myself, I have spent the last couple of days narrowing my conference sessions down. I have selected my first choice in 15 of the 16 Thursday, Friday, and Saturday time slots. I saved one time slot to visit the exhibit hall, when it is less crowded. It wasn't easy finding a time slot to give up for the exhibit hall, but I did it.
Journey through Generations is the Federation of Genealogical Societies' annual conference being held in Fort Wayne, Indiana August 21-24th. If you haven't registered yet, you still have until Wednesday, August 14th to do so online. Registrations will be accepted at the conference. The advantage to pre-registering is that you get access to the online syllabus. Trust me, you will be glad you could look it over ahead of time. It is filled over 150 great syllabi.
The selection of sessions is excellent. This year, after I made my first choices, I decided to see how many different tracks I was using. There are 18 tracks for Thursday-Saturday, I selected sessions from eight of those tracks: Methodologies, Transportation, Midwestern and Neighboring States, Midwest Repositories, Migration/Immigration, Online Resources, British Isles, and Writing, Speaking, and Publishing. I am heavy in the methodology track with six selections. The other tracks have one or two selections from them. There are 16 different methodology sessions to make your selections from. Most other tracks have four to six choices, except for Records which has 16; Technology has 12 and Midwest Repositories has 10. I think the selection committee did a great job of providing a variety of choices.
I like to make a second choice for each session, just in case my first choice is filled to capacity when I arrive. I selected sessions from the tracks I didn't pick with my first choice classes. My second choices come from the Records, Ethnic, Genetics, Midwest Religious Communities, Technology and Military Tracks.
What tracks didn't I selection a class from? I didn't select European, NARA/Federal, German or African American tracks. The European track had four choices, I had attended one before, and the other three did not pertain to my area of research. The NARA/Federal had four, but I didn't feel they would further my research goals at this time. The German track would help me in my research, but I had taken a four hour workshop in German Research at the FGS conference in Springfield and decided to explore other areas of education this time. Lastly, I thought about taking an African American track session because it is an area of research I know nothing about, but I had a hard enough time narrowing my choices and this track didn't make the list this year.
Overall, I am very happy with my choices, but you know what they say about the best laid plans. I will try to remain flexible. I know it seems a little OCD to analyze my selections to this degree, but when sleep evades one at 2 o'clock in the morning, what else is there to do?
I am a Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) Ambassador. My role as an ambassador is to help promote the FGS 2013 conference through blogging and other social media platforms. I have not received any compensation for promoting the conference.