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Planning Local Section Meetings

The quality of your local section meetings will influence the opinion of your members about your local section. If you make your meetings interesting, easy to get to, and appealing to a broad audience, you are well on the way to having a successful local section. Reach out to members, fellow scientists, and family, friends, and the general public by your choice of both technical and non-technical programming.

Characteristics of Successful Meetings

  • Are well-planned—and far in advance
  • Are championed by an enthusiast
  • Make attendees feel welcomed
  • Adhere to an established budget

Base Program Content on:

  • Interests and needs of the audience
  • Goals of the section and overall goals of the ACS
  • A balance of technical and non-technical topics
  • Seasons, events, and traditions

Diversify Local Section Meetings

  • Increase communications with members by using the ACS Communities 
  • Partner with museums, science centers, libraries
  • Plan social events such as wine tasting
  • Conduct industry tours
  • Hold holiday programs in conjunction with family activities
  • Invite general interest speakers: history, environment, future of chemistry, chemistry education, homeland security
  • Ask a speaker to give a talk at two meetings within your section – many are willing to do this
  • Hold separate, simultaneous meetings in two locations
  • Sort member mailing lists by regions within the local section – make a Special List Request through ACS

Additional Suggestions

  • Diversify meeting locations to accommodate a geographically dispersed membership
  • Hold meetings at moderately priced venues—not the least or most expensive place
  • Consider room size, privacy, ease of access, and access for persons with disabilities in selecting a meeting venue
  • Vary menu and refreshments