The more I discover about IPS, the more I realize what a great organization we have! I am devoting this column to my latest adventure into the inner workings of IPS.
On August 5, 2015, I flew to Montreal to preside over the IPS Council meeting to be held with Vision 2020 on August 6-8. I was excited, optimistic and as prepared as I could be. I had read Robert’s Rules of Order twice, prepared a big white notebook filled with the council meeting agenda, Vision 2020 strategy, all affiliate and committee reports and a list of all of the names and some photos of committee chairs, council members, and the august presenters who were proposing to host IPS 2018. Having never attended an IPS Council meeting, I took nothing for granted and came armed and prepared.
The first thing on the agenda after my arrival at the hotel was a meeting with the IPS officers. When I sat down, Lee Ann Hennig, IPS secretary, handed me a big white notebook, one of 5 copies prepared for all of the officers. I then realized:
#1 IPS has an efficient, organized, competent person as IPS secretary who is committed to providing the officers with information to perform their tasks well.
Lee Ann’s actions are generated from a heart that seeks the success of IPS. I put aside the notebook I had prepared, and took hers.
Thursday, August 6 at 9:17 am I called the IPS Council meeting to order. Pierre La- Combe, our facility host, set up the meeting room, all equipment, and organized our working lunches. I watched him move tables and help presenters with their laptop connections, sound, etc. Is this the same man that manages the new, very successful Planétarium Rio Tinto Alcan, Espace pour la vie Montréal?
#2 IPS members humbly serve one another without regard to status.
Dr. Jin Zhu was present to give his final report on IPS 2014 in Beijing, followed by a very appreciative response from the entire council. Jin’s presentation was followed by Maciej Ligowski and Monica Malinowska with updates on the IPS 2016 Conference in Warsaw, Poland. You will be receiving information soon about the wonderful surprises and plans for this extraordinary conference.
Later that morning we heard from our four presenters to host IPS 2018:
Celso Cunha, Planetarium Foundation president and Alex Cherman, astronomer, both of the Rio de Janeiro Planetarium presented for Rio de Janeiro, Brazil;
Alan Nursall, president and CEO, Telus World of Science, introduced by Ian McLennan, representing the Canadian Association of Science Centers, for Edmonton Alberta, Canada;
Marc Moutin, director of expositions, Citè de l’espace and Mrs. Rouillon-Valdiguie, Toulouse Deputy Mayor for Toulouse, France;
Levent Gurdemir, director, Planetarium University of Texas Arlington for Arlington, Texas, USA.
The winning bid proposal to host IPS 2018 was awarded to Toulouse, France. We are sincerely grateful to all of our presenters for generously opening their hearts to invite IPS members to their home institutions and cities.
To be present in a room with the past conference host, the present conference host, and the future conference host was a momentous occasion.
#3. IPS conference hosts work for years with their host cities to provide the very best offerings and experiences for you. Each conference promises to build upon one another with innovative and enriching programs. It should not be a surprise that IPS’s key benefit to membership is our truly remarkable and unforgettable bi-annual conferences.
Our work with Vision 2020 followed the IPS 2018 vote. Introduced by Jon Elvert, our first presenter was Vision 2020 team leader for Pofessional Development, Karrie Berglund. She presented the results of the team’s survey in which many of you participated. We discovered the areas of professional development you are seeking. The 2016 Warsaw team was present and encouraged with the results. They will immediately be incorporating the team’s research into their session planning.
Our Vision 2020 facilitator, Liz Monroe- Cook, calmly and professionally led us in our work ahead. No more listening to presentations. We had to think and collaborate with one another to begin formulating the structure and deliverables of the new IPS. We divided into 5 groups at 5 separate tables with fellow council members, with one officer and one Vision 2020 team member at each table. We were given topics to work on developed by our Vision 2020 team. We were even instructed how to think about these topics so that we wouldn’t be stuck in our old ways of thinking.
Liz is a pro and handled all of us well, kept us on track and on time, and helped us whenever we were stuck or unable to move forward. The Vision 2020 team collected the results of our efforts and will provide us with an organized compilation of our work. Out of this information the Vision 2020 team will offer us suggestions for our next steps.
The IPS Council truly focused on a greater IPS, one that supports the results we discovered from the Strength-Weakness-Opportunity-Threat survey. One year ago in Beijing we started the Vision 2020 process with the SWOT survey. We received most of the results just 10 months ago.
The Vision 2020 team and the IPS Council took advantage of our meeting in Montreal to move the initiative forward. We put our international minds and hearts together for the common good. You will begin to see the fruit of our labors, one by one in the near future. We will keep you posted.
#4 Nothing is more fun than collaborating with people committed to the same vision. Nothing is more enriching than engaging with people of different cultures and nations to build a stronger and more relevant international planetarium society.
We are in this together.
Your IPS officers and affiliate representatives:
Front, from left: President Joanne Young, Ruth Coalson (Vision 2020 Team), SWAP Representative Rachel Thompson, Treasurer Ann Bragg, and GLPA Representative Jeanne Bishop. Second row, CASC Representative Ian McLennan, Karrie Berglund (Vision 2020 Team), JPA Representative Kaoru Kimura, NPA Representative Aase Jacobsen, GDP Representative Björn Voss, and Vision 2020 facilitator Liz Monroe-Cook. Third row: Pierre La- Combe (manager, Planétarium Rio Tinto Alcan), Past President Thomas Kraupe, Secretary Lee Ann Henning, RMPA Representative Michele Wistisen President Elect Shawn Laatsch, BPA Representative Celso Cunha (proxy), Jon Elbert (Vision 2020 Team), APS Representative Warik Lawrance, MAPS Representative Patty Toth Seaton (proxy), and PLANed Representative Jaap Vreeling. Back: (partially obscured) APLF Representative Marc Moutin, CPS Representative Jin Zhu, SEPA Representative John Hare, and EMPA Representative Manos Kitsonas.