Update from NCSL: The Benefits of Membership & Engagement
Last week Vaisala attended and exhibited at the 2013 NCSL annual conference. This year's conference was held in Nashville TN. Despite reduced attendance, the conference was lively and productive. Two items were salient to us at the conference: first, attendance was down and second, we attended a panel discussion titled “Calibration Point Selection Practices” that turned out to be quite interesting. In this week's blog, I'll discuss the conference attendance, in next week's, I'll cover the panel discussion on selecting calibration points.
I think that part of the reason conference attendance numbers were down was due to sequestration, which has limited the ability of military and other government agencies to travel for conferences. These folks make up a significant part of NCSL and the reduced attendance is likely related in part to this.
However, there is another, larger issue, which may account for the reduction of NCSL attendees, which is the apparently waning relevance of NCSL in the world of metrology and calibration. NCSL is aware of this and is working to revitalize the organization. If you’re not familiar with NCSL, visit their website to learn what they do, or contact me and I’ll be happy to tell you what I know and why Vaisala supports the NCSL.
If you already attend or participate in NCSL, consider what you can do to support the organization. Contribute your ideas, sign up to teach a tutorial, prepare a presentation for the next conference, organize a panel discussion, exhibit to make others aware of you products and services, or consider asking a colleague to join you at the next conference. You may also want to reach out to your customers and educate them about NCSL.
When you join NCSL you have access to an abundance of metrology and calibration resources. You have access to training for your metrology and calibration people, some of it specific to different industries. You have the opportunity build a network of professionals with concerns and issues similar to yours. You never know, these people might end up being customers, clients, suppliers, or maybe even friends.
Our hope is to engage with organizations that seek not only to maintain high standards in metrology, but also to be aligned with the industry stakeholders most active and interested achieving "excellence in Measurement Science."
Thanks for tuning it! In next week's blog, I'll discuss the panel discussion I attended: "Calibration Point Selection Practices.” The panel included Jeff Gust of Fluke Calibration, Mark Kuster of Pantex Metrology, Joe Petersen of Abbott Laboratories, and Malcolm Smith of Westcan Calibration Services. Quite an esteemed panel!