The AAPG Annual Convention and Exhibition (ACE) is almost upon us, and that’s good news to young professionals who want to begin building a professional network that will serve us the rest of our careers.
Whether this is your first convention or you are a regular, ACE can be an intimidating and overwhelming experience for early career professionals. On top of navigating the robust technical program of over 1,000 oral and poster presentations, there is the task of choosing from an impressive lineup of field trips and short courses, luncheons, receptions and featured lectures.
Add to that the challenge of deciding which of the over 100 exhibitors you would like to visit first, which day you are going to meet your old friends from grad school for lunch and when you’ll find time to visit the Aquarium of the Pacific, and you realize that “overwhelming” may be an understatement.
To help you navigate those waters, two events have been planned for the convention’s first day – both intended to specifically help young professionals maximize their ACE experience:
♦ The first event is the YP Meet & Greet, which begins Sunday, April 22, at 2 p.m.
The Meet & Greet is a great networking opportunity and one of your first chances to connect with other young and experienced professionals during the convention. Participants meet and are grouped with experienced AAPG attendees, who will serve as guides to newcomers to the convention experience.
You are then encouraged to attend both the opening session and Icebreaker as a group, where your new mentor will introduce you to other AAPG members and their colleagues.
This is the fourth year of the Meet & Greet and it promises to be a valuable networking experience for all who attend.
♦ The second event is the YP Networking Reception, which begins at 7:30 p.m. Sunday (right after the Icebreaker) and is yet another opportunity to enjoy food, refreshments and the chance to continue your networking potential.
This YP-only event will be held at the Long Beach Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery, and there you’ll have the chance to meet members of the hosting YP Committee – and learn about all of the goals and initiatives that the committee has been tackling for the last few years.
The event promises to be a wonderful opportunity to network with colleagues old and new – and start your convention experience off on the right foot.
Whether or not you take advantage of these two events (and I hope that you do!), be sure to introduce yourselves to as many people as possible at ACE. Don’t let the opportunity of having thousands of industry professionals under one roof go to waste.
You will be amazed at how the rewarding and valuable connections and friendships made at ACE will last your entire career.
See you in Long Beach!
(Editor’s note: )
Jonathan Allen, with Chevron in Bakersfield, Calif., is a member of the AAPG Young Professionals Committee and of the ACE organizing committee.