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Top 5 Tips for Getting the Most Out of CSM

Thursday, February 6, 2020   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Matthew Nicholas
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Top 5 Tips for Getting the Most Out of CSM

By: Jessilyn Gibas,SPT; Mackenzie Clinger, SPT; and Brianna Hopp, SPT
Rosalind Franklin University DPT Class of ’20

  1. Download the APTA Conferences & Events app.
    • Not only does the CSM app have a schedule of the day’s events at the palm of your hands but you can find presenters’ PowerPoints and outlines of their presentation. Note: not all presenters provide a handout so definitely bring a pencil and notebook to take notes for future reference, just in case.
  2. Plan which presentations you would like to go to the day before and have one or two back ups just in case it is full.
    • Once you obtain your CSM welcome packet make sure you review all the presentations and descriptions to see which ones you plan on attending. Many of the presentations are popular and fill up fast so make sure you arrive at least 15 minutes early to have the best guarantee getting a seat. Have one or two back up presentations just in case your first choice is full.
    • Extra tip: If you cannot get in because the conference room is full, some of the presentations offer another area to view a live feed of the presentation. Just ask a volunteer at the check in station to see if there is an alternative viewing area.
  3. Pick a variety of presentation categories and find one presentation each day highlight a subject you are not as familiar with.
    • CSM brings together over 350 presenters who are experts in each of their specialties. No where else will you get such a wide variety of presentations. Try not to limit yourself to only one or two categories. By attending a variety of speciality categories, you will challenge complacency in the field and you might even find yourself interested in a specialty you did not even know about.
  4. Network! Network! Network!
    • There are over 13,000 attendees from over 30 countries! Definitely visit the exhibit hall where top companies in the industry have representatives presenting and are recruiting possible employees upon graduation. Even if you are a first year, the connections you make now can continue until you are ready to graduate. Plus it shows initiative and high interest for the recruiters who will be your connection to getting a job!
    • Networking does not just mean networking with company recruiters. Network with fellow students, PTs, PTAs, and others attending the conference. Everyone attending CSM has a different background and reason why they are attending. You might bond with someone who is interested in your chosen specialty or you will learn about something new in the physical therapy field you have never even heard about.
    • Extra tip: Bring business cards with your contact information or a few copies of your resume. You never know who you are going to meet at CSM so impress them with how prepared you are!
  5. Attend post conference events and use your time to explore Denver, CO
    • Since you are most likely visiting a new city, why not explore what Denver has to offer. Once you are done for the day with conference presentations, take your time to attend post conference events held by the APTA and companies found in the exhibit hall. Many of the events are held outside of the conference center so you can explore Denver and learn a little more about its culture.

Share your thoughts! Comment below!

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