APC Experience Interview: Emily Cornett

June 14, 2024


Emily Cornett, Executive Assistant at Appalachian State University

Welcome to ASAP's Career Corner Interview series! In this edition, we interviewed Emily Cornett, Executive Assistant at Appalachian State University, about her experience at the 2023 Administrative Professionals Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada and the value of professional development for administrative professionals. Read on to discover how attending in-person training can enhance your skillset and significantly boost your contributions to your company upon your return.

Why did you choose to attend APC? 

Emily Cornett: I chose to attend APC during my annual professional development meeting. I wanted to grow in my current role but was unsure how. I had heard great things about APC and was eager to see how it could help my career. My supervisor was super supportive of my professional development goals. I knew I wanted to get my PACE certification, so when I found out there would be an entire day devoted to PACE, it was a no-brainer. Just the thought of having a review day for the certification test put some of my anxiety at ease. 

How would you describe APC’s atmosphere? 

In addition to the Vegas excitement, the conference was nothing short of empowering. If you’ve never been surrounded by thousands of people encouraging you and your success, you should attend APC. It was full of kindred-spirited people who were there to share their experiences and lift each other up. It's an atmosphere that leaves you feeling inspired and supported. 

How would you describe your personal experience at the conference? What are some key takeaways?  

I walked away from APC with a support system I never knew I needed. I went with some colleagues who later became my dear friends because of our experience attending APC. We all worked at the same institution but didn’t really know each other. Now, we meet up monthly to chat about work and various ways we can support each other. It's funny–we flew 2,000 miles from home to find a supportive community that was always in our backyard. That speaks volumes about the atmosphere you’ll find at this conference. It has a way of bringing people together. 

Why is professional development so important for admins? 

It's all about continuously learning, growing, and finding that sense of purpose and fulfillment in your career. Plus, it's a fantastic way to connect with others on the same journey and build a supportive community. As admins, we always care for others and sometimes forget to invest in ourselves; but we can't pour from an empty cup. Professional development allows us to refill that cup, enrich our minds, and reignite that passion for supporting others. By investing in ourselves, we become better versions of ourselves, ultimately allowing us to excel in our supportive roles. It's a win-win! 

What lasting impact has APC had on you?  

Getting my PACE certification at APC was a game-changer for me. I put in so much effort and dedication, and it paid off! I feel incredibly accomplished. I still find myself going back to my course notes all the time. I also created a shared repository with all the workshop materials. It's like a cheat sheet I shared with some APC attendees, and we all used it to study for our PACE exam. In addition to what we learned at APC, we added relevant tips and tricks that we’ve picked up, and it keeps growing. I reference it constantly and can’t wait to add more to it.

Attendees bonding at APC 2023

What would you say to admins considering attending an upcoming APC conference?  

Go for it! Attending APC is like stepping into a world of endless possibilities and connections. It's a chance to build a community of like-minded administrative professionals who truly get what you're going through. Plus, the networking opportunities are amazing! It’s essential to take care of ourselves and prioritize our needs, especially when we're always there for others. After attending APC and finding your community, you can reapproach your career with a fresh take on the administrative profession. 

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