Welcome to the Windy City! (Child Life Conference, Day 1)

May 26th, 2011

Hello from Chicago!¬† As I type this, I can see the University of Chicago & Chicago Tribune buildings against the city skyline…I could definitely get used to this view!¬

I’m so thankful to be here, attending the 29th Annual Child Life Conference on Professional Issues.¬† Earlier this morning, I had a chance to spend time with several child life colleagues from Children’s-MN, then attended a “half-day intensive” session called “Supporting The Healing Community Through Interactive, Closed-Circuit Television.”¬†¬†¬†¬†(Amy Peterson,¬†director of Children’s Star Studio programming, was also in attendance¬†at this session!)¬†¬† The presenters were from Skylight TV, the interactive TV channel at Children’s Memorial Hospital here in Chicago.¬† Their presentation was filled with video clips of their various patient shows, including visits from celebrity guests like Mr. Rogers, the Harlem Globetrotters, and Yo-Yo Ma.¬† One of the neatest parts¬†of their talk (for me, at least!)¬†was hearing how volunteers are being plugged into supporting these programs!

In the evening, the Child Life Council held a “First-Time Attendees/New Members” gathering.¬†¬† Since this is my first time at the conference, I signed up for this event…and I’m so glad that I did, since¬†I ran into past volunteer/intern Laura Blayney!¬†¬†(It was great to see her!)¬† I also attended a “Professional Networking Roundtable” later in the evening, and thoroughly enjoyed chatting with other professionals from¬†Alabama to¬†Missouri about their role(s) in¬†supervising child life volunteers.¬†¬†To top off the night, my wonderful co-presenter, Betsy Brand,¬†and I rehearsed our presentation for Sunday morning.¬† It will be an honor to speak in front of other child life specialists/volunteer supervisors later this weekend.

Tomorrow marks the “official start” of the conference, with the Opening Keynote Session scheduled for 8:30 am!¬† I’ll be back with a “Day 2″ update tomorrow night!

Until then,

Jenna :)

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