PSIA-AASI’s Fall Conference, an annual event in which educational leaders from across the country gather to find ways to improve the snow pro experience through increased communication, collaboration, and consolidation took place in Breckenridge, Colorado, last week.
As PSIA-AASI Board Chair Ed Younglove said, “The gathering of the PSIA-AASI Team, volunteer leaders, staff, and educators is a unique opportunity for collaboration throughout the association, which, makes PSIA-AASI a world leader in snowsports education.The event provides a platform for the creativity and collaborative work that are hallmarks of PSIA-AASI’s education material and events.”
As a result of the conference, which kicked off Halloween and continued through Saturday, November 2, Younglove said that “PSIA-AASI governance and operations took a huge step forward in accomplishing consistency across the country.”
One of the main catalysts for that “huge step” is a "One Team" concept uniting the association – despite the diversity within the organization by discipline, geography, and demographics – which benefits all of its members.
“All leaders from across the country, from the educational side to the board side, are committed to driving success for our members and future members,” said PSIA-AASI Chief Executive Officer Nicholas Herrin. “I have never seen so many people work so hard together at this event to find outcomes that will energize and enhance the educational product we deliver across the country.”
Here, PSIA-AASI Director of Education Dave Schuiling shares his three takeaways from Fall Conference, and how they will benefit members. (Note: In the coming weeks, TheSnowPros.org will feature more top takeaways from conference attendees, including PSIA-AASI Team members).
- We are aligning: The hunger for learning is driving this group of incredibly dedicated leaders. At Fall Conference 2017, we all tackled the unknown together to step outside of our comfort zone in the name of consistency. Having an outside educational body (Penn State) validating our work is very powerful and unifying. The lessons learned and continued focus on the outcomes of 2018 are why we pushed farther than ever before at Fall Conference. We’ve moved from the concept of alignment to actually aligning. It’s a game changer.
- Walls are crumbling: This is the first Fall Conference where we’ve truly collaborated across all divisions and disciplines. The One Team spirit is living and breathing within our educational leadership. Multi-discipline task force groups worked together to develop fundamentals of teaching skills and people skills into Learning Outcomes. Through this process, discipline task force members were able to report back and integrate the collective work into the discipline-specific technical Learning Outcomes. The Learning Connection has inspired cross-discipline collaboration and learning from each other at a level that has not been realized in the past, when there was a tendency to work in silos.
- We are building relevance: If we consider our impact to the industry as the education and professional development arm, we’re truly creating relevant opportunities for the growth of snowsports and our future leaders. The strategic-alignment initiative allows for the future portability of the diverse skillset achieved through snowsports education. Our partnership with Penn State University solidifies and validates these skills that transfer into career pathways outside of snowsports. The Learning Connection embodies and identifies these skills and the future accreditation from a university validates our professionals as relevant leaders in the job force, whether in snowsports or a wide variety of other industries.
- Peter Kray