I attended my first IADMS annual meeting in Birmingham, UK. I remember being too scared to approach esteemed researchers and practitioners didn’t have the confidence to ask questions following presentations. I remember hoping that in the future I would be more confident and wanted to be much more involved in the association. I had applied to be on the student committee and just after the Birmingham meeting was delighted to hear that I had been elected as the Chair. I have received a great deal of support and encouragement from IADMS staff, Board members, and other committee chairs and have been able to develop the student committee under this.
Committees perform invaluable work on behalf of IADMS, ranging from designing the academic program for annual meetings, producing and translating educational resources to gaining supporters and fundraising. A common aim of all of this work is to continually expand the association and increase our reach within the wider dance, scientific, and medical communities. The student committee in particular works across a range of initiatives to ensure that IADMS continues to foster and develop the next generation of dance medicine and science practitioners, to secure the future advancement of our field.
Committee work is a fantastic way to become more involved in IADMS and to work with amazing colleagues from all over the world. For students in particular, I wouldn’t underestimate the potential of this for networking and personal and career developing experiences. From being a shy student in Birmingham, to presenting in Washington DC, and moderating in Seattle, it hardly does it justice to say that my personal confidence has grown and that I have had enriching experiences through my IADMS committee work. There is plenty of opportunity for all IADMS members to be involved (on some level) with committee work so my advice would be consider what you could contribute and GET INVOLVED!