The author assures distressed travelers that Sigma’s 45th Biennial Convention is well worth any delays.
I arrived at convention a day later than planned due to travel delays. Our flight was cancelled Friday night, and we were checked into the airport hotel as “distressed travelers.”
Distressed is right! I was distressed that I was going to miss the opening ceremony and the procession of flags—my favorite Sigma tradition. I was also concerned that, if there were more delays, I might not be able to fulfill my moderator duties on Saturday afternoon. Twitter provided a wonderful means of abating my distress as I followed #SigmaConv19 to catch all the updates. Thankfully, we made it to D.C. Saturday morning, and I was no longer a distressed traveler; I was an excited biennial convention attendee.
Sigma is all about connections. Within minutes of arriving at the Gaylord, I was greeted by the smiling faces of colleagues from all corners of the globe. At registration, I reconnected with the amazing staff members who make Sigma my favorite global nursing organization. I scoped out the ribbons provided this year, grateful to Sigma for offering options that convey each attendee’s preferred pronouns. With my bag and program packet in hand, the scene was set for this to be the best biennial convention ever.
The first day’s concurrent sessions did not disappoint. I learned about new research in end-of-life clinical education. I moderated a captivating session about nursing informatics and took away ideas for how I can encourage my students to appreciate informatics as more than just a “computer course.” Between sessions, I continued to see familiar faces I haven’t seen since the last biennial convention or this past July in Calgary at the International Nursing Research Congress.
I ended the day at the author’s reception, where I was privileged to meet several of Sigma’s up-and-coming nursing leaders. These amazing nurses have written books on technology, transformational leadership, nursing practice, and more. We come from all parts of the world, but we share two passions: nursing excellence and a love for Sigma.
Why do I share my travel issues as a blog post? Well, I heard from many people throughout the day who also experienced travel delays. I imagine other attendees will be headed to D.C. in coming days and may experience delays as well. I hope not!
My suggestions for distressed travelers are: 1) Follow #SigmaConv19 on Twitter so you don’t miss any convention happenings. 2) Take a breath; you’ll get here. And 3), trust that your wonderful experience at Sigma’s 45th Biennial Convention will make the delays well worth the wait.
Safe travels everyone! RNL
Megan Lippe, PhD, MSN, RN, @DrMLippe, is an assistant professor and simulation specialist at The University of Alabama Capstone College of Nursing in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA.
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