August 2015

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August 2015

News From David Grindle, USITT Executive Director

The Learning Never Stops

There are always new ways to look at and learn from colleagues, like Projection Designer Wendall Harrington.

School is starting. Let the learning commence!

August is when many schools return to class, and we often associate school with learning. Once school is done, no more learning, and I can go on with life.

I remember those thoughts, yet the hard fact is that learning never ends. The world changes, we change, opportunities come, and all of that means learning new things. That’s why we have USITT. We get to work in a world that has new challenges and opportunities, and with that comes the need to learn. In 2016 there are going to be even more opportunities for learning, and the membership should be keeping an eye out for these.

eSET (Essential Skills for Entertainment Technicians) continues to develop its first round of qualifications. The working groups have submitted materials to the council, and the council is providing feedback to the working groups. Later this year, we will have information for comment, and the program will be set to launch in 2016. This is a world-wide initiative. Similar programs are being launched in Europe (the Erasmus Project) and in New Zealand (Entertainment & Event Qualifications). Each of these initiatives are supporting one another but not copying one another. The point is that entry level qualifications are equally important to certification at the higher levels.

The Jay Glerum Rigging Master Class will also launch in 2016. This class will have both an entry level basic rigging component for students and educators, and an advanced component for professional riggers. By offering both aspects of rigging education, we show our commitment to safety at all levels and honor the memory of someone who was dedicated to educating everyone at all levels. The details on this workshop will be announced in the fall.

These are but two examples of the continuing education USITT is developing for people “in school” and “out of school.” There are programs for designers in the works as well, just not far enough along to release information.

We may not call ourselves students, but we should always call ourselves learners. Learners show a natural curiosity to discover new things and reexamine what we already know. Those are the people who innovate and move our industry and the whole world forward. Those are the people who move USITT forward, and I thank you for being one of them.