milken institute global conference

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I'm having a serious "how did I get here" moment...

This conference is nothing like any I've been to before. I may be the only person here not in a suit--and that includes all the staff members at the registratio desk. I'm typing this in the "AOL Pavilion," an ultra-modern tent that feels more like an electronics store, with multiple TV screens showing news, sports and weather, loud upbeat VH1-style music that I think is supposed to show all these staid business people what "the kids" are listening to these days, and a variety of odd and uncomfortable workstations with computers where those same staid business people are checking their mail and forgetting to logout. (I've seen a staffer stop at least 3 people to tell them they really need to log out...)

There is no wifi, at least not here in the pavilion. Instead, we have to use these public workstations, which are running "AOL Explorer" as their browser. I'm hoping I might find a bit of wifi in the main hotel, since it's a Hilton, but I'm not holding my breath.

I'm headed to a series of talks today related to corporate partnerships with education, in hopes of getting tips on how to increase external funding for my lab at RIT; if I can do that, going back there (as opposed to staying at MSR) would start to look much more attractive.

So here's the question--do I go shopping for a suit today? Or just stick with what I feel comfortable wearing? I can argue it either way. "Be yourself" or "When in Rome?"

Wifi or no wifi, I'll be blogging a lot of what I see today. I don't often get to attend conferences with speakers like Lance Armstrong and Leonard Nimoy. Should be quite an experience...

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This page contains a single entry published on April 24, 2006 9:30 AM.

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milken conference: "ensuring america's success in education" is the next entry in this blog.

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