Making the Most of Conference

Meet people, educate yourself, have fun! Here are some tips.

Conference Center Logistics

  • The 2016 MLA Conference will be held at the Resort and Conference Center at Hyannis.
  • Keep traffic in mind if you're not planning to stay overnight. Getting to the Cape can take extra time during commuting hours.
  • Use maps and signs to find your way around the building, or ask at the registration desk.

Planning Your Conference

  • Set goals for what you want to get out of the conference. Look for programs that apply to your library or job.
  • Follow the conference on Twitter (hashtag #masslib16).
  • Attend at least one session that gives you the opportunity to step outside your comfort zone.
  • First-time attendees are eligible to participate in a program that provides them with conference Mentors. To sign up for a Mentor, complete the online form.

During Sessions

  • Get to sessions early for prime seating. If you're late, feel free to come in and stand in the back.
  • Be courteous to presenters and people around you. Set your phone to vibrate.
  • Feel free to request that speakers use the microphone.
  • Take notes to refer to later.
  • Ask questions. It's likely that others have the same questions as well.

Between Sessions

  • Visit the exhibit hall and speak with vendors. They make our conference possible.
  • Enter the Basket Raffle to win cool prizes and support the MLA.
  • Attend social events such as receptions, mixers, meals, and Trivia. Don't be afraid to be yourself and have fun.
  • Engage with other librarians--they're a wealth of information. Many of the attendees have years of experience and have been conference presenters.

Networking

  • Conference is a great opportunity to get acquainted with people who inspire you, make introductions for you, and possibly be future referrals or references.
  • Bring business cards!
  • Make sure your name badge is visible.
  • Sit next to someone unfamiliar introduce yourself.
  • Attend Guerrilla Storytime and YA Slam on Tuesday, especially if you're interested in children's services.
  • Attend the Career Mixer and Cocktail Reception on Monday night.
  • Participate in the One Book, One Conference by reading Two if By Sea by Jacquelyn Mitchard. A book discussion will be held on Monday.

Conference Career Center

  • The Career Center will be open every day of the conference and offers resources for those looking to take the next step in their profession.
  • Attendees can drop by to speak with a career counselor or they can book an appointment for more in-depth discussion or resume review.
  • The center will be open 11:00am-3:00pm on Monday and from 10:00am-3:00pm on Tuesday and Wednesday.
  • After registering for the conference, schedule an appointment by completing the online form.
  • On Wednesday from 11:15am-12:30pm, the center will be holding a Mini-Career Fair where job-seekers can drop off resumes and ask questions of a selection of employers looking to fill positions.

Learning about MLA

  • Visit our website.
  • Visit the MLA table in the exhibit hall.
  • Get involved!

After the Conference

  • Complete session and conference evaluations. Feedback helps conference organizers plan future conferences.
  • Bring your newfound energy and knowledge back to your library. Share and discuss with your co-workers and implement the new ideas you learned.
  • Send follow-up emails or notes to people who especially interested you.
Adapted from the NELA Conference publication of the same name.