APA's 114th meeting offered students its usual buffet of speakers, networking events and opportunities to present. But this year's meeting also offered more to sample than New Orleans' beignets.
New programs sponsored by the American Psychological Association of Graduate Students (APAGS) included yoga breaks and social events, such as a food crawl--in which about 65 students sampled New Orleans cuisine. Other networking events included the APA president's reception. Psychology students also whetted their appetites for their future profession with programs on negotiating authorship, conducting online survey research ("Gifts and reminder e-mails boost online survey response rates, students find"), succeeding on practicum ("Make practicum count") and self-care ("Questions of balance")--41 APAGS-sponsored sessions in all.
The more than 2,500 students who attended convention also helped bring back a little spice to their host city. Students were among two busloads of APA volunteers who traveled to the Ninth Ward a day before convention (photo, top left). In 90-degree heat, they helped Habitat for Humanity to build about 75 houses that will be sold at cost to needy families. Others volunteered at Animal Rescue New Orleans, cleaning cages and petting, feeding and walking animals lost to Katrina. More broadly, every psychologist and student who attended the annual meeting contributed to New Orleans' revival, noted APA CEO Norman B. Anderson, PhD, during the meeting's opening session: The convention contributed an estimated $17 million to the local economy.
-D. Smith Bailey