NCMPR District 5: There’s No Place Like Home …

by Heather McDorman
St. Charles Community College
Cottleville, MO

Like Dorothy’s return to Kansas from Oz, I can tell you she’s right … there’s no place like home and my NCMPR home is District 5! (Hey, we are pretty close to Kansas!)

Stop #2 on my fall odyssey finds me in Kansas City, Mo., at the InterContinental Hotel near the famous Country Club Plaza.  This is a GREAT location and the hotel is really beautiful.

Jim Strayer, District 5 Director, and the event organizers, Lelain, Heather, and Dan from Metropolitan Community College (Missouri), have done a wonderful job with planning, programming and play.

Proper planning brought the membership to a great property, provided us with seriously sophisticated meals, presented a fine Medallion Award evening, and offered up a nice slate of vendors to visit. (Thanks Erin, Renee and Cyle from Dakota County Technical College).

The program was highlighted by a good mix of hands-on tools (Photoshop techniques by Dewey Price) and tech strategies (organic search engine optimization by Lelain Lorenzen). Other breakout and general session highlights included what to do when the national media calls (Chuck Salestrom), website redesign planning (Cyle Olson), logo and branding development (Sue Kirtland and Holly Sterkel), and so much more.

As usual, there is no shortage of “playtime” with D-Fivers. Whether it is a very competitive game of “Who Can Tweet the Most Relevant Conference Tweets” (above, search #NCMPR or #NCMPR5) or taking a “scenic” 45-minute drive to a restaurant only 4-1/2 minutes away … well, there’s plenty of bonding and networking taking place for both newbies and vets.

I was one of eight folks from Iowa, Minnesota, Kansas and Missouri who took a van to Oklahoma Joe’s BBQ. Our scenic travels through several KC (Missouri and Kansas) neighborhoods brought us together for a common cause … find that darn restaurant (thank you iPhone GPS and Dewey and Sam, “just follow the little blue dot!”). And it was actually in a gas station … you had to be there (but it was goooood!).

Needless to say, everyone made me feel very welcome … and I remained a part of the NCMPR District 5 family. Ahhh, it was good to come “home.”

Speaking of which … soon I’ll be on my way home to Wentzville, Missouri, (just west of St. Louis), where I will return to work at St. Charles Community College (with colleagues Kanna Taylor and Peggy Schreiner) for a few days before my next stop … the mile-high city, Denver, Colorado, with the District 4 gang.

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