On Friday, February 24, 2023, at the conclusion of the three-day HETMA Virtual Conference 2023 (opens in new tab), HETMA (opens in new tab) co-founder Joe Way got choked up as he was building to an announcement that was the culmination of relentless grassroots teamwork, which started four years ago. "I think that we have now got the one piece that's going to completely change our ability to really serve our industry."
At InfoComm 2023 (opens in new tab), HETMA will have a significant physical presence with a 20 x 20 booth on the show floor, which will act as a home base for everyone in higher education. "We know that we would not be successful if it weren't for their [AVIXA] support sponsoring the Prism Scholarship, sponsoring us, getting our initial banquet, and putting all that together," said Way.
The relationship between AVIXA (opens in new tab) and HETMA is a multi-year commitment that will continue to grow. The HETMA presence will kick off with a summit on Tuesday, June 13, at InfoComm. "The summit is going to be short form this year, and we will be moving it to Monday next year," Way said. It was not lost on the attendees of the virtual announcement that a higher ed event that occurred and overlapped with InfoComm several years ago was down the street. With HETMA's relationship with AVIXA, this event is co-located.
In addition to the booth presence at InfoComm, "We're going to have special programming on the floor, leading some tours throughout it and being able to do recordings," Way added. HETMA corporate partners are also invited to the booth.
With a focus on higher ed attendees, there will be rooms for studying CTS exams. "We're partnering with other great people doing special events," Way said. "We've got catered content with enough free time for you to visit with booths, do your own things, and take your classes."
While the HETMA team is elated about the ability to have a physical presence, it will not replace its virtual conference, "but we may adapt over time how we do it," Way explained. "We see the value in this virtual conference for people who can't travel. But we also see value in what we can offer in-person and catering a week for our vertical."
The HETMA booth at InfoComm will be a hub for everyone in higher education. "It's a place to start. It's a place to end. It's a place for community," Way added. Watch for a full calendar of HETMA-related classes and events at InfoComm.
"We want to support every organization and everything they're doing," Way concluded. "We can have that central voice, and now it's physical."