17 October 2018
GREETINGS! This month’s Materials Evaluation highlights the ASNT Annual Conference taking place in Houston, Texas, on 28–31 October. You will likely read this issue just before attending or while at the conference. Because of that, I wanted to personally call out specific activities of which you should be aware.
The ASNT Annual Conference is the largest annual gathering of NDT professionals, researchers, suppliers, and stakeholders. There is no other annual NDT event of our size and programming where attendees are able to choose from almost 90 hours of presentations and networking opportunities carefully selected and produced for their timeliness, relevance for personal and professional growth, and contribution to the body of NDT knowledge.
As the largest conference, we attract attendees from around the world. The leadership of international NDT societies make it a point to be at this conference each year to meet with sister societies and share their respective news. The scheduled International Forum and International Reception provide deliberate spaces for ASNT to recognize those attendees who travel from over 45 countries in support of ASNT. The ASNT Annual Conference is the single time that many of the international coalitions conduct meetings each year, including, among others, the Pan-American Conference for Nondestructive Testing (PANNDT), Asia Pacific Federation for Non Destructive Testing (APFNDT), and executive committee for the International Committee for Non-destructive Testing (ICNDT).
The Annual Business Meeting and Town Hall will occur on Sunday, 28 October this year. I strongly encourage each of you to attend these important presentations and discussions. This is your opportunity to see and hear about the successes of ASNT through a retrospective view and look ahead at the opportunities for the Society. I mentioned in last month’s letter that ASNT ISC senior staff members will discuss ASNT’s role in the recent award of a National Science Foundation grant during the Town Hall. You will be encouraged and inspired at the strides ASNT is taking to broaden awareness for NDT. Another organization making tremendous impact in connecting NDT students with internships and exposure to unique work experiences is the American Aerospace Technical Academy (AATA). John Stewart, AATA executive director, will share the time at the Town Hall to discuss how his organization creates partnerships with local, state, and federal programs. You should definitely plan to be in the room to hear about these exciting happenings for the NDT industry.
ASNT committees and councils meet during the Annual Conference also. These focused work groups are member-driven vehicles that, in unison, keep ASNT moving forward. I cannot impress upon you enough the importance of your participation in a committee or council. No matter your personal or professional interests, there is a space for you to collaborate and be part of the future of NDT. Never think we already have enough help. Your voice matters and we want to hear it. While onsite at the conference, do not hesitate to stop and ask an ASNT staff member, board member, officer, committee/council member, or myself about how you can get involved.
ASNT’s Day of STEM will be on Monday, 29 October. Almost 100 Houston-area high school students and educators will be onsite at the conference to learn about NDT through hands-on activities, presentations, and tours of the exhibit hall. We were all that age not too long ago (I’m still a kid at heart). Remember how uncertain the future felt? Your pleasant disposition, smile, and helpful words when the STEM participants are onsite could leave an impression that may encourage one or more of them to pursue NDT as a career. We all know that we are nearing a gap in the workforce. We should take advantage and seek out every opportunity we have to reach out and lift up young people and those in transition to choose NDT.
The keynote address by four-time Olympian Ruben Gonzalez, the Annual Banquet, the 2018 Lester/Mehl Honor Lecture, and the Plenary Lecture are among the many other activities I didn’t specifically mention above but should not be missed. Your attendance at the 2018 ASNT Annual Conference will be rewarding and the single best investment of your time for networking and knowledge at one event.
I look forward to seeing you at the conference. As always, feel free to reach out to me with any questions or concerns.
D R. A R N O L D “ARNY” B E R ES O N
ASNT Executive Director firstname.lastname@example.org