This year’s ASHRAE Winter Conference was held in Chicago, and like the Windy City itself, the conference was a whirlwind of activity. Members attended back-to-back meetings, networking events, made some new friends, and caught up with ASHRAE colleagues all while absorbing as much new information as possible. However, there was one distinction that set this conference apart from other conferences: #myASHRAE The hashtag #myASHRAE was created before the Winter Conference for members to share their experience. Members flooded their social media platforms with pictures, status updates, and tweets using the hashtag. Even after the Winter Conference ended, #myASHRAE is still frequently used on social media. You can search #myASHRAE on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook to see how other members are experiencing ASHRAE. It is impressive to see ASHRAE’s global reach, and it's a great way to see how other members’ participation works towards ASHRAE’s motto: “Shaping Tomorrow’s Built Environment Today.” This global movement inspired me to tell others what ASHRAE means to me and why I choose to stay involved in the organization:
1. TECHNICAL KNOWLEDGE
At every conference, I try to attend as many technical sessions as my schedule will allow. There are over 100 technical sessions to choose from, and the opportunities to improve your own technical skills were abundant. Additionally, I am a member of three technical committees (TCs). TCs are a great way to dive into a particular area of interest. You can also help edit chapters of the ASHRAE handbooks or sponsor technical sessions at future conferences.
2. CONNECT WITH OTHER INDUSTRY PROFESSIONALS
Networking is understandably a significant benefit to being involved in ASHRAE, but there is a lot of potential to make those connections into something more than business colleagues. Through involvement, you can build a network of mentors and make friends with other like-minded people all across the world in the HVAC&R industry.
Publications are perhaps the most popular reason anyone is an ASHRAE member. Through membership, you get access to valuable technical handbooks, standards, journals, advanced energy design guides, and much more. All of these resources are excellent tools to be successful in the HVAC&R industry.
4. LEADERSHIP OPPORTUNITIES AND PROFESSIONAL GROWTH
When you are an active ASHRAE member, you not only donate your time and share your knowledge, you make an investment in yourself. ASHRAE provides additional opportunities to stand up and be a leader. Communication, business knowledge, problem-solving, and teamwork are all skill sets that can be practiced by being involved. The Annual Meeting in Atlanta is only a few weeks away! You and the other 50,000+ members will be able to use #myASHRAE on social media to show the ASHRAE community around the globe your experience. Whether it’s a chapter meeting, on the job, or reminiscing about your favorite ASHRAE conference, simply create a post and share it on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook using the hashtag. Show your #myASHRAE!
About the Author
Jessica Mangler is a Mechanical Engineer at Ross & Baruzzini with experience in mechanical design and energy modeling. Her project experience includes higher educational facilities, residence halls, central energy plants, laboratories, government facilities, office buildings, medical and dental facilities, and commercial buildings focusing on chilled beams, VAV systems, fan coil units, and chilled and heating water systems. Jessica also has expertise in Revit and BIM technologies. Additionally, Jessica is an active YEA member (Young Engineers in ASHRAE) and serves on the Board of Governors for the local St. Louis ASHRAE chapter.