Yesterday, Matt Shipman (@ShipLives on Twitter) published a blog post about how conversations and networking have led to collaborations and new projects for him.
I distinctly remember standing with him on Durham’s Loyal Avenue – we lived across the street from each other – talking about writing careers, the joys and challenges of fatherhood, and the young ScienceOnline conference I was involved in.
A couple of years went by, and eventually Ship became a valuable member of our community, so much attuned to the potential of the four Cs that he stepped up and found a way for ScienceOnline to grow into a larger space.
Because of Ship, for the second year in a row we’ll be welcomed by N.C. State University to the McKimmon Training and Conference Center, a splendid facility that offers us plenty of space for hugs, handshakes and a hundred hours of talking about science.
Under Karyn Traphagen’s creative leadership and the brilliance of our community, ScienceOnline2013 is going to be a fabulous gathering. I’m looking forward to standing in the center of the Figshare Cafe — the large room where we gather before, between and after the program’s discussion sessions — twirling slowly and observing the interactions of the attendees. Like Ship, I’ll be acutely aware of how a single conversation can grow into something much more.
NC State has been in the news lately. There’s a just-opened state-of-the-art library, and a new football coach. He’s coming from Northern Illinois University, in the town where I spent my teenage years. As a high school senior, I stood on that football field as DeKalb High School Homecoming King, the first soccer player to be chosen for that honor. This month, I’ll be prouder yet to stand on the N.C. State campus and watch our community brilliantly represent the rewards of conversation and the promise of science.
Please help us thank N.C. State University for their generosity. Tweet a message to @NCState and tell them why their hosting of ScienceOnline2013 is worth a touchdown dance.