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On Winning The Award for Best Undergraduate Oral Presentation at the 40th Annual Meeting of the National Weather Association

Wow, that’s a long title! As it indicates, I won the award for Best Oral Presentation by an Undergraduate Student last week at the National Weather Association’s (NWA) 40th Annual Meeting in Oklahoma City, for Learning Disorders in the Meteorological Community: Implications for Communication and Education.

I wanted to share some thoughts I have on winning the award.

Going in submitting my abstract, and while at the conference, I didn’t think of my talk as being part of some competition. I saw it as being yet another installment in a long line of presentations occurring at the Annual Meeting, albeit one in which the speaker was going to receive critique and feedback from a panel of judges on the use of graphics, and speaking ability. I would be lying if I said that I’ve never thought about having the best student presentation at an NWA conference, but really, winning the award with this specific talk never crossed my mind as a possibility. I do okay at public speaking, but I struggle in a few key areas, and I felt that this talk was more a chance to get needed feedback to better my speaking skills, than it was something I’d take to a competition. It was on a topic I’m passionate about, and my intent was to spread awareness for that topic while gaining feedback to improve myself professionally. Thus, the only thing I acknowledged to myself about being judged was the feedback I looked forward to receiving.

Many of the other undergraduate speakers were outstanding, and the fact that a panel of judges considered my presentation to be the best was astounding; it was both confidence-boosting and humbling at the same time.  I’m sincerely honored to have won the award. It came as a complete surprise, and in some ways, I’m still trying to comprehend it.

I cannot, however, take all credit. My adviser and co-author, Greg Blumberg, played an important role in keeping me on track and focused during the process of crafting the presentation, and was extremely helpful as someone to bounce ideas off of. I can say with certainty that without him, I wouldn’t have won the award.  Thanks, Greg, for being an awesome mentor throughout this adventure, and beyond!

For a great recap of the conference via social media, check out the conference TagBoard and Storify! There were over 16,000 tweets!

With National Weather Association President, Dr. Elizabeth Page.
With NWA President Dr. Elizabeth Page after the announcement that I’d won the award for Best Oral Presentation by an Undergraduate Student.

 

With my mentors Greg Blumberg (left. was my advisor for my study and presentation), and Mike Mogil (right).
With my mentors Greg Blumberg (left; adviser for my study and presentation), and Mike Mogil (right).

 

With my friend Lynnette Grant, who won the award for Best Undergraduate Poster.
With my friend Lynnette Grant, who won the award for Best Undergraduate Poster.
Published inAutismEducationLearningResearch

One Comment

  1. Grandma Grandma

    Very nicely written. I can feel your excitement in your post and still thinking ” I can’t believe it”. So very, very proud of you. Wondering what next adventure will be. What ever,I’m sure it will be amazing. Always remember I love you.

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