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Does DD need business/contact cards?


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(For those who might be coming in not having read past posts, my 9 yr old will be attending the 2014 Joint Meeting of Ichtyologists and Herpetologists this summer).

 

 

I'm looking at some of the preparing for conference checklists online (plus drawing on my experience) and one big suggestion is to have business cards. One of the major reasons for DD going to this conference is to make connections with other programs/people, so I'm wondering if I should get cards for her before August? Has anyone had experience with young kids going to professional meetings/events? Her e-mail goes through my account (and I'd use my phone number).

 

Also, anyone else have any suggestion of stuff we just plain need to have? I'm kind of having that sinking, rabbit hole feeling again....

 

 

 

 

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I don't now about the herpetology community, but in the physics community, nobody ever has business cards at meetings. DH is an active researcher, attends several conferences each year and never used, or obtained, somebody's business card. There are usually participant lists with affiliations (and possibly email contacts - but if the institution is known, it is easy to obtain contact information online.)

I understand that your DD does not have an affiliation and official contact address, but I would also expect the contact scenario to be her contacting somebody she met at the meeting, and not the other way round.

 

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In the Environmental community it is all about contacts and networking.  Last year Ds told that having to have me write the information hurt his legitimacy.  We got 200 cards and that lasted months.  We'll have to restock this coming school year, but it is not a big deal.

 

We got some made up from Vista Prints for free.  It required him to have a title for them to look more serious, so he gave himself one.  That and a personal email address.  We used my cell phone number. The only thing that I did not forsee was the cards we were going to get in return.  I felt like such a duphus with these stacks of cards floating all around in my purse.  Now we have a small card box that Ds can put in his pocket the day of the event.  His cards clip up top, the ones he receives go in the bottom.  At home, I catalog all of them into Evernote and he puts the physical ones in his larger "Contacts" box.

 

All in all, it was a very scary thing, but it really helped.  Now it only makes sense that he has separate contact information since he is doing his own thing, but at the time it was hard to let go of my "little boy."  I want people to see him as his own person, so I had to allow it.  I also had no idea how much correspondence I was getting through him. 

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She has her own e-mail for online classes and the like, although it comes to my computer/outlook account, so I could use that.

 

I'm thinking that taking a binder with page protectors in it so she can stick papers she gets in there as she gets them (business cards, session notes, possibly flyers from organizations, etc) may be a good thing. I think we have some trading card sheets that could be used for business cards. I know I end up paper laden at music ed conferences. I imagine that some of the environmental groups will be present as well, since many of them are very actively involved in research.

 

 

There are a couple of social events just for student members, and I'm thinking that might be one place she'd want to share e-mail etc.

 

 

 

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I personally think having business/ID cards would be a good idea. As a student I participated in several closed scientific conferences where we worn only name tags and the rest of information was written down on "Contact list". Once I attended an international congress and I was the youngest and less honored participant among all those professors and academics:). Most of them had their business cards. I was acting as an interpreter, not a speaker. If I were in your shoes, I would ask my daughter to draw a mascot(instead of putting her picture on the card), put her title ( enthusiastic lead researcher or something more memorable), her e-mail address leaving the phone number out. Usually ID tags has an affiliation with the company/organization you represent. So you can put her "Homeschool name" instead of the company name and her title. Most people who attend such events try to reach you through e-mails. How formal is the event your daughter will be attending?  If it is not too formal,she could attach her business card to a lanyard and wear it as an ID. Just my thoughts:)

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I used our homeschool name as the "Institution" on her registration form (after asking her mentor-we have a legal "School" that we're registered with, but it's not what DD thinks of as her "school"-she prefers the one she made up). I don't know if it will appear anywhere or not. I assume there will be some form of convention badge simply because some of the sessions are at the Aquarium, there are shuttles available between the convention center/downtown shopping districts, and so on.

 

We have a cute cartoon hydra logo that a friend did for our school a few years back ;). It's even already loaded into Vistaprint because I ordered t-shirts for our school one year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I used our homeschool name as the "Institution" on her registration form (after asking her mentor-we have a legal "School" that we're registered with, but it's not what DD thinks of as her "school"-she prefers the one she made up). I don't know if it will appear anywhere or not. I assume there will be some form of convention badge simply because some of the sessions are at the Aquarium, there are shuttles available between the convention center/downtown shopping districts, and so on.

 

We have a cute cartoon hydra logo that a friend did for our school a few years back ;). It's even already loaded into Vistaprint because I ordered t-shirts for our school one year.

 

It looks like you are all prepared and ready to go:) Good luck!

 

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I bet you could just print 20 cards and be ready to go. I suspect handing out cards might be more common at an environmental activism event compared to a scientific meeting. I usually only hand out cards to a handful of people I expect to network with in the near future, not everyone I meet. There's no more prep needed really :)

 

Is your daughter presenting a poster? If not, she can take notes for next time! If so, there are a few extra things to bring for that....

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She's not presenting this go round, at least not on the research side :). She is participating in one panel session on educational programming. For some reason, they thought that she might have some interesting insights on "Engaging the next generation".

 

 

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Yes! Always have cards, you never know when they'll come in handy. I routinely carry my & husband's business cards, my "Mommy" cards (with my kids' names and my email & phone #), amd my personal cards (my name, email, and phone #). I use my cell number on all of the personal cards.

 

You can get 100 cheap on vistaprint.com or at Staples. Get a little metal or plastic case if she's going to be carrying them in a pocket or purse so they stay neat. I collect cards I get in a rubberbanded stack, then scan them when I get home.

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