1999 PSIA-E Region Four Meeting Minutes


Exam changes coming for 2000-2001 season. This is the last year for exam retakes!
New master teacher certification highlights the trend away from validating teaching skills to experiencing teaching skills.


This year's meeting was held at the Sheraton in Harrisburg, PA (90 minutes from Frederick) on Sunday September 19, 1999. Over 40 people attended (Whitetail people included: Sue Slick, Lloyd Mueller, Angelo Tutsi, Darwin, Bill Dietrich, Rusty Carr). Attendance has been dropping over the last few years.

Bob Shostek is the new regional director and the new guy running the meeting. Bob's email address is mkyles@epix.net . Bill Cox, the Southern rep was also there.


Eastern news
The changing of the guard has taken place. Ray Allard has finally retired from executive director, but he's sticking around as financial consultant. Sue Spencer has taken over as executive director. Bill Hetrick has stepped down from Region 4 director. Everyone agreed that a plaque for Bill Hetrick's 25+ years of service was a good idea. Kim Seevers is the new education director. She did a bang up job last year amid a lot of trouble. Cherisse Rabl has taken over as director of the Eastern Education Foundation.

Election results - Low voter turnout: Only 355 of 6000+ (6%) in PSIA-E voted in the last election.

Team news
All of the examiner training squad members got elevated to examiners. We have a new development team with 7 new members. We also have 10 new DCLs, 5 new ACEs (advanced children's educators) including Jan Hawkes, and 2 new snowboard dev team members.

Last year was a challenging year
PSIA-E started at 10,806 members and ended with 10,882 members (940 new members). The overall retention rate was 89%. Nationally, 1/3 of instructors join PSIA, but PSIA is not pushed out west. Approximately 80% of eastern pros are involved with PSIA. 95% of the western instructors are full time, while 95% are part time pros in the East.

The 1998 PSIA-E budget was $1.5 Million. Only $10K ended up as surplus. A new contingency fund has been set up to deal with challenging years in the future. The budget for this year is $1.63M. $32K is projected for surplus, 1/2 will go to the contingency fund. $16K is allocated for action plans this year (including videos, education material, certification material).  Did you know about action plans? They are used to get funding to do stuff. Hey - if you write one up - it just might get funded!

Misc stuff
The latest issue of the Professional Ski Teacher got mangled/delayed in the mail. It was sent around Labor Day, but just got in last week for most of us. Changes to strategic plan coming at the next board meeting. See the news in the fall PST. More weekend events this year (29!). Also, a first, night events for snowboards!


National News
Bob mentioned that national hinted that they wanted to increase dues $10, but that PSIA-e was adamantly against this. So much so that the item did not even come up for vote at the national meeting. The portfolio system is being updated. The new "master teacher" certification is a big thing, but still a work in progress. National has been successful with marketing. It is generating a lot of revenue. For example, in the Subaru program, national gets $250 for each $500 rebate the pros claim. Bob mentioned that PSIA-E gets a lot bucks out of national for supplementing the costs of getting national team members to participate in PSIA-E events.

New demo team try out this year!

PSIA is working towards a stronger alliance with Canada ski pro group

PSIA is working on getting articles in local ski papers about PSIA.


Ski school management committee - Ed Miller (Blue Knob)
New survey for ski school directors - what should role of PSIA be? A copy was handed out to everyone to compare against directors replies.

Send to Ed Miller
138 Drifted in Drive
Frigid, PA 1946-8920 (sorry bout the zip code typo)

1) What is your current perception of PSIA-E What's good, what's bad

2) Do you use educational materials from PSIA-E? What is your opinion of these materials?

3) Do you encourage your staff to use the educational programs of PSIA-E? What is your opinion of these programs?

4) What role should PSIA-E take in assisting the growth of the industry?

5) What role should PSIA-E take in promoting guest satisfaction and retention

6) How can PSIA-E best help you in the training of your staff?

7) What changes would you like to see which could help PSIA-E better meet your needs?

PSIA-E is dropping the "member school" program (which was no cost to the area anyway) - only 25 resorts in the east were not members.


Certification committee (exam news)
Mark Siekierka runs the children's programs at Montage is our new rep on the cert committee.

The new level 1 study guide will be available at/around ski school directors seminar. 98% pass rate - can only apply from the form in study guide! This is last year for exam retakes - only 3 this year. Only 54.55% passed on retakes anyway. The level 2 prereq has changed to an experiential workshop. This is being viewed as being very successful. Exams are being reworked for next season (2000-2001)!
-to improve pass ratio (currently 49.76%); get candidates better prepared
-shift to part 1 (skiing) and part 2 (teaching) (less emphasis on pass/fail for teaching)
-weakness in professional knowledge and skiing about equal

Alpine pass rates: Level 2: 49.76 %; Level 3 pass rates: 39% part 1, 58% part 2
Adaptive pass rates: Level 2 27%(3 of 11); Level 3 25% (1 out 4)
Snowboarding pass rates: Level 2 66% retake, 60%; Level 3 11%, 60% retake

Shostek examiner tip - When Bob sees "bad" skiing form, he won't necessarily flunk skiing skills. He will test the exam taker for professional knowledge to determine if bad form caused by lack of knowledge on what good form should be. He will flunk the participant on pro knowledge in these cases. This is why you see examiners drop all those hints during the exam. Use these hints to determine what you need to show in your skiing!


Children's committee - Robin Reed
Committee focus is on the details of the children's symposium on 12/13-12/16. 175 people expected. This year's theme is y2k - say yes to kids. Discussions will focus on terrain gardens&features, advanced kids and seasonal programs, bag of tricks, racing - using gates to build skills. Greg Hoffman (Green Mountain Orthotics) will host indoor and on snow sessions with a focus on stance.

ACES - some new events (e.g. $25/day for new teenage instructors)
-brochure for aces
-video - teaching kids to ski. This will be targeted to parents. Filming is in November. They are looking for kids to be in the video! The video may be sold and/or given away as a promo tie in with a sponsor - TBD.


Education Committee - Angelo Ross - 7 Springs
Angelo really talked up the New Master Teacher certification. More details are due in the next PST. There will be a children's specialist track. Part of the program will be mini-exams in clinics at end of clinic versus the course leading up a big "test". There is a real effort to make this student centered and experiential instead of an evaluation process.

Apply for scholarship money - everybody who applies gets something (about 40% of tuition is the norm). The scholarships are more focused on education than certification (i.e. apply for ITC funding or other clinic Vs exams).


No snowboard committee this year because of national disbanding (because of AASI focus?). But the snowboard committee will be restarted and have 2 region 4 reps!


We bagged the breakout groups this year. Bob is looking for suggestions on how to improve the meeting. Suggestions are welcome for the timeframe, location, content, etc. A volunteer speaker idea was suggested from the floor.