By: Jay Gilbert, IFTSA President
On November 12-13, 2014, the IFTSA Board of Directors met for our Mid-Year-Meeting at the IFT headquarters in Chicago, IL. Our goals with this meeting included (1) ensuring all officers are aligned with the active and soon to be active projects within IFTSA, (2) discussing what a successful IFTSA looks like in the future, (3) understanding our communication channels and how they can be more effectively utilized, and (4) re-evaluating our strategic plan.
We had a very successful business meeting with updates from the Competitions Task Force, the IFTSA blog (sciencemeetsfood.org), IFT Day of Service, and FutureFood 2050. The Area Redistribution Task Force was pleased to announce that the IFT BoD passed their recommendations for redistribution. Additionally, the IFTSA BoD passed a motion renaming the Pacific West and Mountain West areas to Pacific Northwest and Pacific Southwest, respectively.
Christie Tarantino, IFT Executive Vice President, joined us for our discussion on what a successful IFTSA looks like in the future. Our goals with this discussion were to brainstorm what the value of IFTSA is with respect to chapter and member benefits, the value of IFTSA becoming an increasingly international organization and the challenges associated with this, and what IFTSA might look like in 10 years. Surprisingly, many of the major challenges and opportunities we discussed were not specific to becoming international, but in regards to IFTSA and the value we provide all our student members in general.
Katie Paffhouse, IFT Knowledge & Learning Experiences Program Manager, and Lori Conley, IFT Digital Director, helped us distinguish between our different communication channels, such as ‘Science Meets Food’, Facebook, Twitter, and IFT Connect to better understand how to most effectively communicate with our members. This was hugely successful and we look forward to continued success in our various communication channels. One thing I would like to challenge all IFTSA members to do is comment on the articles published on Science Meets Food in the hopes of creating a dynamic discussion.
Lastly, we were able to re-evaluate our strategic plan to ensure we are prioritizing around the proper areas as we continue improving IFTSA. Overall, this was a very successful meeting. Our board is composed of a widely dynamic and engaged group of people, who are going above and beyond their assigned tasks. I look forward to providing you with more updates over the next year on the rapid progress of IFTSA. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns please reach out to me at anytime.