NEHA October 2022 Journal of Environmental Health

54 Volume 85 • Number 3 Preconference Courses & Workshops We continued the tradition of hosting a variety of beneficial preconference o erings on June 26–28, 2022. Over 250 attendees enhanced their AEC experience by attending one of 10 preconference o erings at the 2022 AEC. The Registered Environmental Health Specialist/Registered Sanitarian (REHS/RS) Review Course prepared 13 attendees for the REHS/RS credential examination. The Certified Professional–Food Safety (CP-FS) Review Course prepared nine individuals for the CP-FS credential examination. Over 30 a iliate leaders came together for the A iliate Leadership Workshop to learn about marketing, event planning, technology, and much more to better serve their environmental health associations. Nearly 20 attendees learned about the fundamentals of body art facility inspection in the Body Art Facility Inspector Training held in partnership with the Body Art Education Alliance. Motivational, inspirational, and educational speaker John Wilson presented the workshop, The 11 Principles of Leadership, to over 50 attendees. Attendees of the workshop were provided with tools they can use every day to provide purpose and direction to their daily lives and long-term goals. Some of the most successful virtual workshops from the 2021 AEC Virtual Series were translated to in-person o erings at the 2022 AEC. The Environmental Health and Land Reuse Certificate ProgramWorkshop explored the environmental and health risks and social disparities associatedwith contaminated land properties, key players in land reuse planning and policy, and redevelopment techniques to improve community health. The NEHA Private Water Network hosted the E ective Education and Outreach for Private Drinking Water Systems Workshop. The workshop featured a combination of presentations and interactive sessions on e ective resources and innovative approaches to positively influence well water testing behavior in privatewell owners, as well as how to overcome challenges related to well water testing. As in previous years, we utilized partnerships to provide crucial training to preconference attendees. We once again partnered with ecoAmerica to o er the Climate for Health Ambassador Training, which addressed the growing concern of climate change. Approximately 50 participants were equipped with knowledge, hands-on experience, and resources to speak and act confidently on climate change and solutions. In the NEHA/Food and Drug Administration National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards Self-Assessment and Verification Audit Workshop, nearly 100 attendees were given an overview of the program standards criteria and hands-on experience in conducting a self-assessment or verification audit. Two new preconference sessions were o ered in Spokane. We partnered with the Washington State Environmental Health Association to hold the Putting Weather Data to Work for Public Health Prevention and Climate Readiness Workshop that focused on the use of meteorological data and climate services in the context of public health practice. In the Using a Health in All Policy Approach to Addressing Childhood Lead Poisoning Workshop, attendees learned about tools and resources to address lead contamination in homes. Student Activities Students continue to be an important part of our community. To recognize this key group of members, we held a Student Welcome Reception before the Keynote Address on June 28. During this networking event, students had the opportunity to connect with our leadership and get acquainted with the programs and services we o er for the next generation of environmental health professionals at the AEC and throughout the year. Over 20 student posters were displayed at the in-person Exhibit Hall and 9 posters were displayed in the virtual Poster Hall. Posters provided insights on the latest research in a variety of topics including Lyme disease in West Virginia, informatics in environmental health, extreme weather impacts, and much more. 2022 AEC Evaluation Survey Results The 2022 AEC Evaluation Survey showed that 91% of attendees who completed our survey rated the AEC as excellent (32%), very good (42%), or good (17%). Comments from the survey respondents included, “The schedule was well organized, the activities were engaging, and it was nice to have the option to attendmany di erent tracks,” and “I didn’t attend one meeting that wasn’t informational and well done.” Of the respondents, 91% said they would attend again. As one respondent stated, “The NEHA AEC fills my emotional cup, professionally speaking. I can attend training anywhere but being among my peers for this experience every year is worth every penny and then some.” The highest attended educational sessions were in the Food Safety, Workforce & Leadership, Climate & Health, Water Quality, and General Environmental Health tracks. The overall most attended session was the Grand Session Kickoff—Challenges Facing the Environmental Health Workforce Regarding COVID-19 Practices—with 78% of respondents indicating that they attended the session. Of those attending the AEC, themajority of individuals work in city, county, or state health departments or in the private sector. Top reasons for attending the AEC included education (especially to earn continuing education contact hours) and networking with peers. “I always learn something useful from the sessions and the networking is wonderful,” stated one respondent. Education & Training NEHA 2022 AECWrap-Up