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FETC 2017 – New @FETC

January 25, 2017


These are my notes from FETC 2017. I haven’t attended FETC before – super excited! Notwithstanding the incredible weather and temperature difference between Calgary area and Orlando area, the conference has a reputation for being outstanding!

I have a feeling this is going to be big! I am fortunate enough to be staying at the Rosen hotel, and it is literally across the street from the convention centre. And the convention centre is huge! There are three different conferences happening at the same time! And not only are we in the conference centre, but also in the Hyatt Regency, which is a good hike, but across overhead shaded walkways with moving sidewalks. It is truly spectacular! Let alone it’s amazing to see everything so green, well-manicured grass and parks areas, while we have a couple of feet of snow at home!

Registration was super easy – brought my printed registration, scanned the barcode, and my badge was printed, they gave me a show guide, and a bag. And then – brilliant idea – stuff your own bag! Yes, you get to put the stuff in your bag – buffet style! Pick up what you want, and place it in! Brilliant brilliant brilliant! And of course some of the obligatory ribbons to add to your name badge – picked up an International one, and a few others. I’m sure there will be some folks who go overboard in putting all the ribbons on, and dragging them along behind them!

Did a quick walk around the facility, so I’d know where I was going, and dropped into the Hyatt – bumped into my good friend Steve Meyer from Clearview Public Schools – always bump into someone you know when you travel!

Now, got a seat for the first session – New @FETC. Four rooms put together, going to be quite the crowd!

Session Notes: New @ FETC w/Jennifer Womble – Program Chair @JenWomble

So many sessions, over 700 speakers. Really want the learning experience to be the best that it can be. Jen asked for everyone to fill out session evaluations and give her feedback! Conference was originally founded by IT Directors, who wanted to share with others. Still same goals today – desire to connect to the very best, highest quality professional development, and build relationships.

Jen shared some tips for a good conference.


Attendees from 41 countries, and ALL 50 States. Jen forgot to put Canada on her slide – maybe she thinks we’re part of the 50 States!;)

International Lounge – Exhibit Floor Booth 2453

FETC has grown!! North and South OCCC & Hyatt

Your badge is scanned at each session, so you can get a report post-conference for the amount of hours spent getting educated. You can amend the report later, and print a certificate if necessary, for your PD needs. Priority at FETC is professional development. Using VerAttend.

Your badge can be scanned on the Exhibit Floor, for contact information.

Jen reviewed the 80 Page Show Guide! Although it’s online, a printed show guide is still handed out. Haven’t seen one of these in awhile!;)

Noticed little cards next to each projector thanking the sponsor… Will take a picture and insert.

Lots of poster sessions this year. Jen said the feedback on poster sessions is always very high, so they have a number of them, and they are awesome. Show Guide has them grouped so it’s easy to find the ones you want.

No mobile app this year, trying to limit everyone’s data usage. Online agenda, you don’t sign in, but it stores information on the local device.


Embrace the EXPO Hall – lots to see, learn, do / visit. Worth your time, you could spend the whole time in here!

Wireless Network – have purchased largest package possible from SmartCity, try to limit the number of devices you are using!;)

Networking Opportunities

  • Reception Wednesday evening at Expo Hall
  • Lunches & Coffee Breaks
  • Tweet Ups, Twitter Posts
  • Shuttle Rides
  • Bloggers Cafe Top North & South
  • EdTech Karaoke

What’s New?

  • Tracks based on your education role
  • Apple Support Desk
  • Microsoft FREE certification testing
  • Computer Science Firehose
  • Mobile MEGAShare
  • Posters by TOPICS

Friday Giveaways & Swag

  • Annual FETC coffee mugs distributed on FRIDAY at LRP Booth 110
  • FETC T-shirts Given away in EXPO between 11-noon at 6 exhibitor booths FRIDAY
  • LENOVO $30,000 prize drawing Booth 220 at 1:50 PM on Friday

Next Year: January 23-28, 2018. Facility is booked through 2030!;)

Call for presenters happens in March!



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