Paloma Raggo

 Paloma Raggo (2014), School of Public Policy and Administration

As a new faculty at Carleton, I wasn’t sure what to expect from this event. My goals were to meet people around campus and to have a good time. In a beautiful setting, I enjoyed the weekend-long discussions and made great contacts throughout campus. What struck me was the light atmosphere, the humour, and the fact that many people knew each other for decades!  It’s now an event I’ll look forward to every year and I hope more new faculty members will join us.

Shibu Pal 2014

Shibu Pal (2014), Sprott School of Business

Finally after 25 years of procrastination, I checked out the great annual Spring Conference of CU in 2014. I had no idea that I would have so much fun while learning at the same time. The latter was not a surprise: after all, we are the university! But fun? Who knew? The setting was the beautiful Thousand Islands area—I could almost touch the water from my room. The food was great and plentiful (well, too much actually!) And the company! I had no-rush, no-pressure-to-perform chats on all sorts of topics ranging from extra light to sort-of-heavy with colleagues whom I have been only been nodding to in the tunnels all these years.

The programs through the weekend were nicely structured: delightful talks that were of interest to all. One of the highlights for me was a talk by a retired colleague, Don Wiles of Chemistry, who opened one lane of the history of Carleton for us, followed by a great discussion about how to preserve and pass on the historical nuggets. Many worthwhile suggestions flowed naturally. (Are you hearing this—the guardians of Carleton?)
I also learned why genealogy matters from Leighann (I think that talk catapulted her to the position of co-chair of the 2015 conference). She reminded me that I really should get to know about my appearance on the earth. A couple of other talks that immediately come to mind were about Rob Ford (I am glad he is no longer a threat, but Chris Stoney tried to convince me otherwise) and about Dying Languages—I didn’t know language deaths didn’t stop at Latin and Sanskrit. Thanks Eric Anonby.

The party time arrived after the sunset. The snacks, drinks, jokes, music (piano, violin), and games.  I enjoyed playing pool (the dry kind). But the peak of fun for me came rather unexpectedly when I heard laughter from a corner of the party room where a bunch of people were playing some board games. It turned out to be a discovery for me as well: the MacOdrum Library has a stock of well-designed board games and a couple of library staff members brought some with them. I joined in and pretty soon my belly was hurting from long streaks of laughter. The following day they talked about how the games became a part of library collection and the academic purposes they serve.

Before I end this, I have to thank John Medicine Horse Kelly of Journalism for capturing moments of activities and inactivities with his camera and his photography skills.  Thanks John!

Will I go again? Absolutely! I have registered already. Are you coming?

Pam Griffin-Hody (2012), Graduate & Postdoctoral Affairs

I was asked to write 60 to 80 words on Spring Conference 2011.  I can manage in one—AMAZING!   Or even nine—amazing, brilliant, genial, incredible, informative, enlightening and extremely enjoyable.  It will, however, take a few more than my allotted to do this experience real justice.

With an insatiable curiosity, I have always wondered about the conference and the Carleton grapevine speculates many things about it—that it is only for faculty, that senior administrative is a heavy and unpleasant presence, that it is unwelcoming and the people and presentations boring.  None of this is true.  I had a(n) [insert your favorite adjective from above] time.

The company was marvelous and the research presentations were interesting and enjoyable.  What is really amazing to me is that I enjoyed the scientific presentations as much as the ones more directly related to my own interests.  I had so many wonderful conversations with so many people each day and well into the wee hours.

So … come to the conference … for the conversation, the sunshine, the river, the people, the research, the music and the parties.  You will take away more than you can imagine!  I’ll be there again.

Terri Hearn (2010), CCS

For me, the Carleton Spring Conference was about meeting people from all campus “walks”—staff, professors and our highly honoured retirees.

I have never felt more welcomed. I enjoyed the wide variety of great speakers and yummy food. I was delighted by all the stories shared at the dinner table. I even had plenty of free time to explore the beautiful forests, lakes and local community in between guest speaker presentations.

I also had the unexpected pleasure of having my evenings filled with the musical instrumental talents of some of the attendees. Who knew there was so much talent at Carleton? I never laughed so hard and had so much fun singing around the fire place with so many warm and kind people.

I was asked to become a Carleton Spring Conference committee member and I did not hesitate to join as I plan on making this a yearly ritual! After leaving the conference I was motivated to take up guitar lessons—my love and joy for music was awakened again. It was a worthwhile, “camaraderie” experience!

Judith John (2010), MacOdrum Library

My trip to the Carleton University spring conference was very memorable and enjoyable.

There were six presentations given by Carleton faculty.  Each speaker gave what I felt was a very knowledgeable insight of their research and teaching experiences. I enjoyed the quiet atmospheric conditions and the very rustic appearance of the cottages and surroundings; waking up to the sound of the loons each morning; walking by the lakes; and the group walk through the woods.  Also, socializing with staff, retired and current professors, some of whom sang Irish songs, played the guitar and the piano. It was wonderful to meet new people, and catch up with retired staff and faculty from the university.

I certainly enjoyed two wonderful days at the conference and would encourage my colleagues to attend.

Thank you CUPE 2424 executive for the opportunity of winning this event and enjoying such a wonderful experience.