Fall 2015 Advancing Family Science Section update

Robin Yaure, section chair

By the time this issue of the NCFR Report comes out summer will be over and the fall term will be in full swing, at least for some of us. Summer always holds so much prom-ise, with unscheduled days looming and to-do lists yet uncompromised. What I find is that time flies unheeded, and to-do lists become modified and expectations altered. Sometimes these changes are welcome and productivity and relaxation are at full tilt. Other changes are less desirable, but then, that seems par for the course. On the other hand, it is important to rejuvenate after a busy academic year, and so sometimes one must allow for more mental breaks than originally planned. On the third hand (?), sometimes colleagues have more time to get to their to-do lists, and thus things that had been started early on are followed up, and so the back-and-forth progress is very welcome during these quickly waning times.

What I am thrilled about — with progress for the Advancing Family Science (AFS) Section — has to do with what others were working on during this summer. After having such great volunteers step up to work on the social media platforms (Twitter, Facebook, blog) as well as preparing for the AFS Section resource exchange, our Section is seeing the fruits of their summer labors. Tonya Ricklefs of Kansas State University has been regularly posting and tweeting updates and information of interest to our Section members (Twitter: @NCFRFamSci, Facebook: NCFR Advancing Family Science Section). Eboni Baugh, of East Carolina University, has kept busy with blog posts, including one by Jakob Jensen that was featured by the Institute of Family Studies in its "Friday Five" post.

NCFR Section business such as voting on the previous Section meeting minutes and bylaw changes and the like have now moved online, so Section meetings at the Annual Conference will be more focused on substantive matters. Given that the AFS Section has clarified its role to focus on pedagogical and administrative aspects of the discipline of family science, the Section meeting will emphasize these matters.

The first half of the Section meeting, scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 12, 6-8 p.m., will provide an opportunity for Section members to share ideas. Last year's Section meeting was very fruitful in terms of the activities that have been occurring this year, and I am sure that this year's meeting will have additional great ideas that can help direct future activities as well.

The second half of this Section meeting will be a combination of a set of roundtables held in conjunction with the Education and Enrichment Section and a more informal resource exchange. More on the resource exchange will be forthcoming from Silvia Bartolic, of the University of British Columbia, and Lauri Etheridge, of the University of North Texas. The plan is to ask Section members to bring materials and ideas that they can share with others regarding courses they teach. Materials relating to teaching family theory, developmental courses, therapeutic techniques, and more will be shared. Watch your email, our Facebook group, and the Twitter feed for additional information.

It is sad to be thinking about the end of summer already given that, at the time of this writing, I still have many more weeks to go. However, the fact that the conference is approaching quickly, and because I am looking forward to meeting many more of you at the Section meeting and conference events, take the sting out of the passing of another summer. I do hope the remaining time is productive but also open ended enough to satisfy my mind's need for relaxation. Having a sense of renewal at the beginning of each academic year has not gotten old for me even though I have been at this for many years. I look forward to seeing many of you in November and can't wait to see what you will be sharing with us!