As a school Director of ICT, I was lucky enough to attend many IT and educational technology conferences over the years. Many were lavish affairs, sometimes with thousands of delegates and international speakers. But without doubt my favourite event of the year was always the Trident Education Conference.
A smaller more boutique conference, Trident’s event always provided the perfect balance of inspirational speakers, peer stories from the coal-face, vendor product demos, and networking, all in amazing venues. And not forgetting the opportunity to relax with a glass of wine or two in the evening!
My first Trident Education Conference was in 2009, when Trident was a new company to me, co-hosted by Melbourne Grammar School and Xavier College, though I was just a day visitor. The next year was held Moonah Links on the Mornington Peninsula and from then on I was hooked!
In 2013 I joined Trident as an Account Manager and was immediately involved in the organisation of Cultivate 2013 at Werribee Mansions, where we intended to explore the changing role of the school IT Manager. After a visit to Westbourne Grammar School, we prepared to kick off the conference proper on Thursday morning. Katie Bentley was scheduled to introduce the day at 9.00am, but at 8.59am she turned to me and said “Gav, you can introduce this!” Thanks Katie! From that moment I resolved to be prepared.
In 2014 we visited Eltham College on the way to the Blairgownie Estate in the beautiful Yarra Valley. Last year we visited Kardinia International College in Geelong before hosting our largest ever conference at the RACV Torquay resort. Even though it was our largest, we still managed to retain the friendly cosy atmosphere associated with the Trident family ethos. Though on the Thursday night, I’m not sure that we kept it classy!
This July we intend to Move Fast and Shake Things when we return again to the RACV Torquay resort with it’s amazing architecture and beautiful views over the golf course and ocean beyond. We break tradition on the Wednesday by not visiting a school first. This year we meet at the new Geelong Library. This stunning building shows the future of Libraries are more than just borrowing books, with a focus on high-end technology to drive research and exploration.
The conference opens, as usual, on Thursday morning with an exciting program of speakers - all movers and shakers. Dr Simon Eassom from IBM kicks off the conference as keynote speaker and will tell us about ‘Cognitive Computing and the Future of Education’. Highlights of the day for me will be the '7x5 Well Shaken' session, where 7 members of our community will spend 5 minutes explaining how they move fast and shake things, and the HP Sprout demo. And then an opportunity to wind down, or up, with the Conference Gala Dinner in the evening. Many are already asking what outfit Martin Corden will be wearing this year, following previous outings as Santa Claus and various dresses!
"Places are filling up fast so I encourage anyone who hasn’t yet registered to visit our conference website, check out the program and put your name down."
On Friday we welcome back Ray Fleming from Microsoft to talk about 'Wearable Technology, IOT and the Future', and close out the conference with Ben Ryder 'Shaking it up at Trinity Grammar School'.
Once again the conference MC is a likeable Englishman who will do his best to introduce and wrap up each day, keep the sessions moving on time, and fill the gaps between speakers, but most importantly keep Martin in check!
Places are filling up fast so I encourage anyone who hasn’t yet registered to visit our conference website, check out the program and put your name down. We look forward to seeing you there.
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