Monday, April 18, 2016

The Nuts and Bolts of Webinars

by Nancy Turnage, VRPS Member Services Coordinator

75 minutes.  After countless hours and input from many sources, VRPS webinars typically come down to 75 minutes of "showtime".

As an example, this discussion will spotlight "What You Need to Know About Tobacco" which was conducted and recorded on Tuesday, April 12, 2016.

Rita Miller, VDH

November, 2015

Rita Miller, VRPS Board Lay Member and Virginia Department of Health Cessation Services Coordinator for the Tobacco Use Control Program, collaborated with Janit Llewellyn Allen, Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation Project Manager, on conducting a webinar for VRPS membership in which they inform attendees on (1) the dangers of tobacco use, and (b) limiting tobacco use within parks.

Timing is everything, and as they compared notes and planned at 2015 VRPS Annual Conference in Virginia Beach, Rita and Janit were also able to reign-in Annual Conference Keynote Speaker Tom O'Rourke, Executive Director Charleston County Parks and Recreation Commission, to provide insight into their project.

January, 2016 

Janit met with VRPS Member Services Coordinator Nancy Turnage to schedule the webinar and identify the nuts and bolts.

Rita and Janit worked independently compiling slideshows to showcase content, with Rita focusing on:

  • History of Tobacco
  • Target Marketing to Youth
  • Introduction of New Tobaccco Products
  • The Toll and Perils of Tobacco
  • How to Take Action
  • The Facts About Cigarette Butt Pollution

Janit Llewellyn Allen, DCR

while Janit explored how three Virginia localities are addressing tobacco control and prevention.  Janit solicited the input of VRPS members Sarah Baldwin (Deputy Director, Fairfax County Park Authority), and Jim Perdue (Parks District Manager, Chesterfield County Parks and Recreation) to share their experiences of tobacco use restriction in parks within their localities.

On a separate but related effort, Rita and Janit are also collaborating on an article for the June edition of VRPS' Parks and Recreation magazine.

February, 2016

Courtesy Chesterfield County Parks and Recreation

When Rita and Janit felt they had final drafts, they solicited the assistance from peers at their respective Virginia agencies for feedback.

VRPS Central Office began marketing the webinar via the weekly E-update member newsletter, E-blasts, and Social Media posts.  Webinar registration and information was made available on the VRPS website.  Typically, VRPS webinars are free to VRPS members only.  Due to the nature of the critical content of "What You Need to Know About Tobacco", and in keeping with its goals, VRPS made the decision to make the webinar free to the general public.

VRPS goals include:

  • Provide and encourage continuous training opportunities for members;
  • Improve recreation, parks, and leisure services to the public;
  • Update members on current trends and opportunities in the profession;
  • Disseminate information to the public through use of publications and media;
  • Maintain current academic curriculum;
  • Involve interested citizens in advisory, participatory, and volunteer efforts supportive of parks, recreation, and leisure services programs in the Commonwealth of Virginia;
  • Maintain a professional register of qualified recreation and park personnel.

March, 2016

While the slides were being created, edited, re-edited, and shared, the VRPS Certification Education Board was reviewing the webinar application to be eligible for .1 CEU by attendees who request to purchase and earn the CEU.

The CEU Board is comprised of:

  • Chair, Shannon Moore, CPRP, Virginia Beach Parks & Recreation
  • Ed Matthews, CPRP, City of Norfolk Recreation, Parks, & Open Space
  • Vic Garber, CPRP, Charlottesville Parks & Recreation Department
  • Ashley Greene, CPRP, Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission
  • Arlana Fauntleroy, CPRP, James City County Parks & Recreation

The board reviews CEU applications to assure that the educational opportunity meets all criteria as defined by VRPS and NRPA:

  1. Activity is planned in response to educational needs that have been identified for a target audience.
  2. Activity has clear, concise, and measurable written statements of intended learning outcomes.
  3. Qualified instructional personnel are involved in planning and conducting each activity.
  4. Content and instructional methods are appropriate for the intended learning outcomes of each activity.
  5. Participants must demonstrate their attainment of the learning outcomes.
  6. The participants evaluate each learning activity.

April, 2016

Jim Perdue, Janit Llewellyn Allen, Rita Miller finalize details prior to the webinar.  Sara Baldwin was able to contribute remotely.

  • VRPS scheduled a connectivity webinar test for all persons to be speaking during the course of the 75-minute webinar.
  • The webinar was held and recorded.
  • CEU certificates were distributed to those attendees who purchased and earned the .1 CEU.
  • The webinar recording was made available via emails to registrants, the VRPS website, social media, and E-update.

Courtesy Fairfax County Park Authority

Many thanks to all the professionals who made this webinar, and all VRPS webinars, possible!

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