Are you suffering from “post-parting depression” now that the conference of the American Evaluation Association has ended? Maybe this will help–a sampling of the professionals who attended the conference, along with their thoughts on the experience. Special thanks to Anna Fagergren who collected most of these photos and quotes.
Stefany Tobel Ramos, City Year
This is my first time here and I really enjoyed the professional development workshop Evaluation-Specific Methodology. I learned a lot and have new ideas about how to get a sense of students as a whole.
Jonathan Karanja, Independent Consultant with Nielsen, Kenya
This is my first time here and Nielsen is trying to get into the evaluation space, because that is what our clients want. The conference is a little overwhelming but I have a strategy – go to the not technically demanding, easy-to-digest sessions. Baby steps. I want to ensure that our company learns to not just apply market research techniques but to actually do evaluation.
When I attend AEA, I get to present to enthusiastic groups of evaluation professionals. It makes me feel like a rock star for a week. Then I go home and do the dishes.
I’m returning to the conference after some years away—it’s great to renew contact with acquaintances and colleagues. I am struck by the conference’s growth and the huge diversity of TIGs (topical interest groups), and I’m finding a lot of sessions of interest.
Pieta Blakely, Commonwealth Corporation
It’s my first time here and it’s a little overwhelming. I’m getting to know what I don’t know. But it’s also really exciting to see people working on youth engagement because I’m really interested in that.
I’ve been coming for many years, and I really like the two professional development workshops I took—Sampling and Empowerment Evaluation Strategies—and how they helped guide my way through the greater conference program.
John, I really like your blog. You have…how do you say it in English?…a twisted mind. I really like that.
Aske Graulund, National Board of Social Services, Denmark
Nina Middelboe, Oxford Research AS, Denmark
[nods of agreement]
No greater compliment, Carsten! And my compliments to all 3,500 professionals who participated in the conference.