Get involved in the Airport Planning, Design and Construction Symposium

Posted in: Air Service, Aviation

Paul Strege presenting at the 2013 Wisconsin Aviation Conference
Paul Strege presenting at the 2013 Wisconsin Aviation Conference

As you are probably aware, the one constant in the aviation industry is that it’s constantly changing. That’s why, with the spring conference season upon us, I encourage you to get involved. For airport executives, governmental officials and consultants alike, conferences provide a fantastic venue to learn about changing regulations, share valuable strategies for success and expand one’s network of contacts.

Some conferences, such as the Airport Consultants Council and American Association of Airport Executives’ Airport Planning, Design and Construction Symposium, being held February 18-20 in Denver, Colorado, offer highly specialized technical programs. The symposium is among one of the most popular events for airport staff as well as consulting partners. Planning, terminal and landside, engineering and airside, program and construction management, and global aviation tracks allow participants to focus on topics of personal interest.

Others events offer a specialized focus to a much smaller audience, providing one-on-one interactions with industry insiders. One example of this is Mead & Hunt’s own Air Service Development Conference in early March, which gives airport executives the opportunity to learn about airline updates, aviation trends, and successful air service strategies directly from airline officials. One-on-one meetings can be arranged between the airports and route planners, which is an added benefit of attending. Additionally, it is a great opportunity to engage regional stakeholders, such as an economic development corporation or other community representatives, in your air service development pursuits. (Note: This year’s event was so popular it is at capacity already, so be sure to book early for the next event being planned for sometime this fall.)

Arguably, the greatest benefit of participating in these conferences is not simply the knowledge gained, but the opportunity to share your own experiences by presenting on a familiar topic that is of interest to you. If the fear of standing up in front of a group makes you cringe, other opportunities such as moderating a session or serving on a conference planning committee are additional ways to get involved and give back to the industry. I have gotten involved in all of these ways and have found each to be rewarding in its own way. Personally, what I value most are the contacts – and friendships – made throughout the course of the event. They have proven to be a resource that pays dividends far down the road.

Interested in what may be out there for you? Check out these conference calendars for a comprehensive list of upcoming events: American Association of Airport Executives, Airports Council International-North America, Airport Consultants Council.

I’d love to hear from you on how you get involved in the industry – through conferences or in other ways – and what you get out of it.

Paul Strege, PE

About the Author

Paul Strege, P.E., is Mead & Hunt’s Midwest Aviation Services Leader. He oversees and supports the operations of our aviation departments in Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin to serve client needs and achieve a sustainable and growing business. Additionally, Paul is a client manager and project manager for general aviation and commercial service airports throughout the Great Lakes and Central Region.

Read more posts by Paul Strege, PE

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