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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Core Course Reflections and Congratulations

During May’s Core Course, Joe Jackson and I went to visit the attendees. It was their first day and we had gone to introduce ISA and ourselves. The classroom is located in the Northern Illinois University satellite campus so it was convenient for us as we are both here in the area. It dawned on me later that ISA had come a long way from the time that I took my Core Course in Rolling Meadows; then we met in a hotel classroom setting. Our manuals were really just outlines of the material and we filled in the information as it was given. The instructor, Elly Rosin used a dry erase board or chalk board to give us diagrams etc., and we wrote like crazy. When I began, I believe there were 25 of us taking the class; this week’s class had 13 members.

Today’s class had the new two part manuals in paperback fashion; one manual is the coursework and one manual is the resource materials. The manuals are a first version and not ready for general consumption but that day is soon approaching. There are Power Points to go along with the topic of discussion, there are projects to complete, there are internet connections for each student, and laptops are used during the class – quite a change. But something that is very much the same is the amount of information that is given in such a short amount of time and how confusing and frustrating it can be at times during the course. By the time the course is finished you know you have accomplished something.

Another thing that dawned on me was the cost of the course has really not changed if you consider the cost of living and the change in the economy. Today’s course is $1299 and I believe the course I took well over 15 years ago was $900. Plus, it’s a really good value for your dollar.

The changes in the Core Course made me think of the changes to ISA in the past 15 years. We have moved our headquarters from Chicago to Seattle and back. We went from a for profit organization to a member owned not for profit. The member owned ISA went from a group management system to a stand alone office back to a management group with Sentergroup. Changes made for good reasons and because of the times we were or are in.

One consistent through all these changes and years is the solid relationships built from our Core Course, division classes, and conference attendance. The ISA membership has become in many of our lives a real part of our personal lives. Not just merely membership dues we pay to belong to a group but personal relationships that have grown and changed through the years. I know that personally some of my very dearest friends are from ISA and I would not have them in my life if it were not for ISA and the people I have met along my travels.

I am looking forward to seeing some friends at my local chapter meeting. It has been awhile since we had a meeting. I know the chapter members are anxious to meet again. As an interesting turn a long ago member of our local chapter came into my shop the other day because they were looking at the web site and found my information. It must have been 10 years since we saw each other but we fell right back into it. Discussing the ins and outs of where is so and so, how is she, what is he doing these days, it was really a pleasant surprise and I hope he comes to the end of the chapter meeting. So you see, no one ever really leaves ISA; they just take a time out.

Judith Martin
ISA President

ISA would like to recognize those who have successfully completed the recent Core Course in Appraisal Studies, in Naperville, IL May 24-30, 2010. Congratulations on your successful completion of the Core Course and best of luck as you further your education, knowledge and experience through the ISA courses and membership!

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