Convention Blog: Day One

Convention Blog: Day One

By Convention Education Committee  | Thursday, September 27, 2018

Jessica Cooper

It's full speed ahead for USAS Convention 2018! I'm not the Captain or Skipper of this ship, just another sailor on the USA Swimming manifest. My roles and responsibilities on this journey are both at the LSC and national level. As the Executive Director of the Georgia LSC, I will be gathering information to improve our LSC practices and governance. As a member of the USA Swimming Convention Education Committee, I will be your human compass at the Happy2Help Desk helping you navigate your way to the next session or teaching you how to use Sched.

Today, my first stop on the Convention voyage was the LSC Development Committee Business Meeting. Although I'm not a member of this committee, much of what this committee does directly impacts my job within the Georgia LSC. For example, Georgia Swimming is currently working through LEAP 3 and today I learned the LEAP program will be going through some significant changes in the future to add an additional category of requirements specifically for Safe Sport. Thank goodness Georgia has a bright beacon of light for Safe Sport named Ceci to help lead the way for us!

My second excursion of the day was the keynote session with Rishad Tobaccowala. (I believe one of the things I'll be doing tomorrow for my daily hour of learning, as suggested by Rishad, is perfecting the pronunciation his last name - it will likely take me the entire hour.) I liked this new addition of a keynote speaker to the itinerary. His message of transformational change really got me thinking about the linkage between old and new, today and tomorrow, global and local, our roots that keep us grounded and the wings that enable us to soar to new heights. One of my favorite lines from his talk was, "The future does not fit in the containers of the past." 

Don't forget the LSC Amazing Race is going on this week. So get your sea legs ready and stop by the Happy2Help Desk to grab your scavenger hunt list and Flat Medley to test your scavenger hunt abilities.

Side note: If you're looking for a lunch recommendation outside the galley at the hotel, I would suggest you anchor at Tijuana Flats!

Jamie Bloom

My day started with an outstanding breakfast at the Shore Seafood Grill. Do not be fooled by the name- they serve food all day and I highly recommend an omelet made personally for you at the omelet station! From breakfast I caught up with my Convention Education team members at the Happy 2 Help desk. If you haven’t stopped by yet, please make sure that you do. We have fun things for you to learn and for just $1 you can purchase a Lingo Bingo card so you will be all ready for HOD. For $15 you can purchase 15 cards! Remember that all $ goes directly to the USA Swimming Foundation.

We had a great turnout at the 1st Timers workshop and once everyone got comfortable and had a good idea of the Rules of the Game we had a nice friendly competition and learned a thing or 2 about convention. The Mental Health workshop was outstanding. Now more than ever we really need to be in tune with the mental health needs of our athletes (and ourselves). Samantha Arsenault-Livingstone did an amazing job of sharing her story with us and offering lots of strategies for making a difference in the lives of our swimmers. Together with Emily Klueh they really gave some important and very timely information.

My last meeting for the day was to listen to our keynote speaker Rishad. His message was great. If we don’t change with the times we will go the way of Kodak (and nobody wants that to happen to them!). Incredibly, Rishad spoke for over an hour without one single visual aid! As I sat and listened to him I decided that I had spent more than an hour learning something today and I wonder what I will learn tomorrow! All in all it was a great first full day of convention.

As the day was coming to a close I saw that the Red Sox crushed the Orioles 19-3! We’d better save some of those runs for the playoffs! Go Sox!

Traci Johnson

What a great first day of Convention 2018!  Upon arrival to man the ‘happy to help desk’, there was already a “first timer” standing at the booth needing help with a schedule. Nice to see brand new faces ready to learn! A steady stream of LSC volunteers strolled past all day long, each heading to a workshop or meeting to glean new practices and perspectives to bring home with them.

We all work very hard in our own little slices of the world to make swimming great for the kids, and it’s an awesome idea to provide the opportunity to gain new insight from those doing the same work on the other side of the country. Often, we find we’re not alone in our various issues that arise, and invariably someone else has already solved the problem somewhere else.

This idea sharing keeps us from “reinventing the wheel” and makes us much more efficient.  People gravitate toward those with similar values and opinions, but this week is an excellent opportunity to really listen to someone whose ideas are completely different. As we’ve been told, change is truly inevitable, but we can do this together!



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