'Pomp and Circumstance'

By Dawn Lospaluto
In May 23, 2013

The weeks of bright futures are upon us: It’s graduation season. Colleges, high schools, middle and elementary schools are all ceremoniously moving students forward with well-earned praise and anticipated promise. For the students themselves, as the sense of release from schedules, structure, and endless testing coincides with the start of summer, accomplishment may pale beside the freedom that seems at hand.

When you are young, school always seems to be about something you are trying to get through―finish the next assignment, pass the next exam, make it to the next grade, get the next degree. When you are older, you wish you had been in less of a hurry. “If I knew then, what I know now”―known that never again would you have weeks and months to spend on learning alone, long unbroken blocks of time yours just for reading and exploring new ideas.

Time and experience teach us that although days and weeks devoted solely to learning may never be available to us again, we cannot let our education end. The world and the workplace change at such dizzying speed that we need to continue learning throughout our lives if we are to remain competitive or even employable.

But how to keep up when there is so much more to cram into every day? Few fulltime workers have time to return to school or add even a single course to their schedule. Already trying to balance a busy family/personal life, pressure-filled job, and the time spent commuting between both, today’s employee may find education palatable only in bite-sized pieces rather than extended feasts.

Fortunately for those in the printing industry, there are ample places to acquire new knowledge and develop new skills without making major time commitments, because the opportunity to learn is just about everywhere. Webinars such as NAPL’s NewsTalk Live programs, for example, offer free insight and information from industry subject matter experts in hour-long chunks (and they’re even archived for those who cannot fit the live broadcasts into their schedule).

This year, there will be more than 70 educational seminars at Print 13, Sept. 8-11, in Chicago, covering the full spectrum of industry management, technical, sales, and marketing topics, at affordable prices that include exhibit hall admission and the opportunity to attend free educational programs and hands-on instruction on the show floor.

And this fall, NAPL and NAQP will present two robust programs on industry management and strategic growth: The NAQP Owners Conference, Nov. 7-10, in Nashville, Tenn., and the one-day NAPL M&A Workshop, which will be offered in Chicago on Sept. 7 and in Rochester, N.Y., on Nov. 14.

Even though “Pomp and Circumstance” is in the air, maybe it’s time to think “Back to School.”

Dawn Lospaluto

Epicomm Senior Director of Communications, Dawn has been the editor of Epicomm 's "Bottom Line" magazine and its predecessor publications, "NAPL Business Review," Printing Manager," and "The Journal of Graphic Communications Management," for 20 years. She also writes and edits several Epicomm member print and electronic newsletters, including [Re]View, Management Bulletin, Highlights, and Discover; press releases; and various marketing materials; and oversees Epicomm 's book publishing program. Dawn previously served as corporate managing editor for Allied (now Honeywell) Corporation and as a reporter and editor for New Jersey's largest evening newspaper. She is a graduate of Douglass College (Rutgers University) and holds an M.A. degree from Fairleigh Dickinson University, where she has served on the adjunct faculty.

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