DEAR MLC MEMBERS AND MOBILE LAB COMMUNITY PARTNERS,
As we begin 2022, on behalf of the MLC Board of Directors (BOD), I’d like to take just a few moments to express my gratitude for this incredible community of mobile labs and science programs. No doubt, the past 20+ (and counting) months have been extremely challenging. Whether you’re fortunate enough to find your program returning to in-person delivery, still operating virtually, or are using your mobile vehicle for another purpose through the pandemic, I hope you and your program have continued to thrive and find meaningful purpose.
While there is no doubt it’s been a challenging year, I am grateful for the unique opportunities that presented themselves and our ability to serve the community. I’d like to take a moment to reflect on one of our brightest moments in 2021: The MLC Connects virtual conference. I was (and continue to be) thrilled with the first-ever virtual program we put together for the mobile lab community and am proud of the resounding feedback we received from attendees. We are so thankful for the many volunteers who assisted with planning a conference that was both valuable and fun. 2021 also connected our membership via virtual webinars, including presentations by the teams at LIFE, BioBus NYC, and the Salk Institute, as well as via virtual “coffee chats” amongst members. These events provided connection and knowledge to our community.
As we turn our calendars to 2022, we’d like to provide our community with a few brief updates:
Board Extensions: Given the continuing uncertainty with the pandemic, the BOD has voted to extend the current terms until the summer of 2022. This allows us to maintain continuity leading up to the conference and will put the Coalition’s elections back on cycle. If you are interested in getting involved with the BOD, please reach out.
MLC Annual Conference: Due to circumstances that are unrelated to COVID, yet still out of our control, we are in the process of finding a new venue for our annual conference. Stay tuned for more details.
Return of MLC Committees: We need your assistance! The MLC cannot thrive and expand without the support of our members. We encourage you to consider volunteering for a committee. More information is below.
Website Updates: The MLC website features new content and resources including our MLC Connects attendee virtual tours and new blog. More resources are being added to our MLC member-only page; check back often!
As the MLC forges ahead, we look to YOU, our member base, to help ensure value for our community. If you’re not a member yet, we hope you consider joining our unique niche of a coalition. If you are a member, we’d love for you to consider running for a position on the BOD this summer or volunteering for one of the committees below.
Committees with open volunteer opportunities:
• Communications - webinars, MLC virtual rodeos, social media content
• Membership - recruitment, prospecting, newsletters
• Conference + Events - development and implementation of our annual conference
To view a detailed descriptions of the committee openings, click here (page 4).
Finally, we are constantly noticing the outstanding work being done by our Coalition members; however, I’m sure a few headlines have slipped through the cracks. Do you have an announcement for the broader MLC community? Were you recognized in an article or on a website? Please take a moment and spotlight the work you are doing by completing this short form.
Thank you for all that you do! We wish everyone the best of luck as we dig into 2022! Do not hesitate to reach out to the BOD should you need anything.
Dave S. Garbe, PhD
Director of Outreach and Education, PSBR
Chair, MLC Board of Directors
To view a PDF version of this letter, click here.