Colorful Guide to Climbing the Summit

by Sherri Henkin on April 21, 2016

Wow! What great opportunities at the Summit! Between pre-conference, leadership program, keynote, and the workshops, I have plenty of choices. STC color-coded the Summit Schedule events, making it easy for attendees to quickly identify their interests. And since this attendee loves color, I find the schedule aesthetically pleasing!

2016 Summit Schedule Colorful Screenshot

Early on, I realized I needed a strategy to review the Schedule. I know that it helps to have an idea of workshops I’d like to attend.

Strategy 1. What are my goals for this Summit?

  1. Grow my skills.
  2. Learn about the latest authoring/editing technology.
  3. Uncover information about creating a consulting tech comm business.
  4. Reconnect with colleagues and meet new technical communicators.

Strategy 2. What tracks match my goals? Everything!

  1. Connections: There are several colors for these activities; Business Meeting, Expo Hall, and Reception are places I plan to go to connect.
  2. Skills and technology: Progressions Sessions in full technicolor! As a technical editor, I gravitate toward aqua, Technical Editing Progression. And the green of Writing Progression catches my eye. What about the periwinkle of Technology and Development? And I’m sure there are other tracks!
  3. Consulting business: Career and Leadership and Independent Consulting Progression satisfy that goal.

Strategy 3. How do I decide?

  1. Create a schedule. STC provided online tools. We can add a presentation to our personal schedule. I’m a paper-and-pen person, so I printed an initial copy.
  2. Working with the hard copy, I highlighted all the workshops I hope to attend, even those that run simultaneously.
  3. Read the workshop and presenter descriptions.
  4. About a week before the Summit, re-review the choices and make a tentatively final schedule.
  5. How do I handle those conflicts? Perhaps I could clone myself? Probably not. I’ll need to decide and may do that on-the-spot. See Strategy 4.

Strategy 4. Leave room for last-minute changes.

While at the Summit, a colleague might suggest a dynamic presenter I may not have considered. Or perhaps, a new friend will suggest I meet a new colleague who is presenting on a related topic, but one I hadn’t considered. I benefit when I’m open to these suggestions.

Time to review the presentation descriptions in this colorful guide!


Can’t attend the Summit in person? Consider the Virtual Track. The deadline to register for the Virtual Track is Wednesday, May 11, 2016.


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