First IIC Fellows' Bulletin - a letter from Cornelia Weyer

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Dear IIC Fellows

At the Fellows’ meeting held during the Los Angeles Congress we came up with the idea that a letter would be sent to all IIC to the Fellows from now on, twice every year. The idea behind this is to encourage and deepen communication among us. What you can personally expect from this is, on the one hand information from IIC’s Council and the office and, on the other hand, a platform for you yourself to put information before everybody else in the Fellowship.

The 2016 Los Angeles Meeting
To start with, let’s share some notes about the last Fellows’ Meeting in Los Angeles on September 14th. I sum up from my memory and the notes that Executive Secretary Graham Voce has kindly shared with me: IIC President Sarah Staniforth opened with a welcome address. We had a delicious lunch together and a lot of friendly discussion, before Vice-President Valentine Walsh stood up and called on Fellows’ help with and energy in the recruiting of further Fellows. A glance at the list of Fellows shows that there are many colleagues missing - many who we would expect to find there - and it shows us also that we should aim at broader age and geographical ranges when looking for candidates for IIC Fellowship. Valentine stated additionally that further support is very much welcome from Fellows in the form of personal support of IIC by Fellows and by fundraising. Both are indeed essential for the IIC and its many activities, such as Dialogues, professional seminars and social networking. Please take this opportunity to re-visit the IIC website – you will find there a lot of information on all of IIC’s activities and the Fellowship form as well:
https://www.iiconservation.org/about/membership/fellowships

Mentoring
Cornelia Weyer (your author here!) then came back to the mentoring programme that had first been suggested at the Hong Kong meeting in 2014. I asked for the Fellows’ assistance in taking this idea further and suggested paths to putting this into place. This generated a vigorous exchange of opinions and sharing of experiences! Quite a few Fellows have indeed gained practice in mentoring programmes, run by either national conservation associations or by other institutions. As a result of this discussion broad consent was given for an IIC mentoring programme with an international focus - where the IIC is the obvious leader. The suggested programme is meant to support students and emerging conservation professionals when shaping their future careers, though not strictly excluding any other IIC members (at other stages in their careers) who might have a desire for mentorship. At the end of the meeting Velson Horie passed around a sheet of paper and received a very useful list of names of those Fellows present who volunteered, and are willing, to assist in the setting up of this programme – many thanks to you all for that!

Also …
Two more topics came up during the meeting: I proposed to enhance communication among the Fellows by starting a twice-yearly letter to you all – as started herewith – and this proposal was well received. Finally Joyce Hill Stoner reminded the audience of the FAIC Oral History Project and asked for contributions. Please consider taking part in this by interviewing conservators – and not only in the Western World! More Information here:
http://www.conservation-us.org/our-organizations/foundation-%28faic%29/i...

Since Los Angeles …
Since the splendid Los Angeles Congress (which now lies behind us by quite a while already) I have worked on the Mentoring Programme with Ann Shaftel and others on Velson’s list, looking at drafting a set of Application Forms to be filled in by future mentees and mentors and on a Mentorship Agreement Form. All three drafts will soon be discussed by IIC’s Council. Additionally we have been working on drafting a budget in order to facilitate at least one personal meeting per mentoring ‘pair’. As the next Council meeting takes place at the end of January, the Mentoring Project can hopefully be published in spring 2017 and thereafter be filled with life. Please contribute to assure this programme’s success and consider mentoring yourself too!

News from the IIC Council
As a special ‘treat’ for IIC Fellows a Certificate of Fellowship will be sent out to all of us before long. Besides paying tribute to you and your professional merits, the professionally produced certificate is supposed to advocate and advertise IIC Fellowship to others as well. Please share the reasons why IIC Fellowship is desirable and ask those whom you think should be on the list, whether you might propose their application.

Fellows' News on the web
Another new feature I want to bring to your attention is the personal introduction of new Fellows in News in Conservation and thereby on the IIC website. This service nicely illustrates the Fellowship’s growth from a more human angle – and means that we can all celebrate new Fellows of IIC
(https://www.iiconservation.org/publications/nic , The Fellowship Corner)

In conclusion
The next of these Fellows letters to all of you is planned for June 2017. Your contributions to this would be most welcome – and in the interim please do contact me with any questions or points you may have (see below).

Let me finish this first one with my very best seasonal greetings to all of you.

Cornelia Weyer
IIC Fellow

Contact: cornelia.weyer@duesseldorf.de