10 Things to Help You Prepare for Academy 2017 Chicago

 10 Things To Help You Prepare

With Academy 2017 Chicago quickly approaching, here are some final tips and reminders to help you prepare for the upcoming meeting. Is this your first Academy meeting? If so, read our tips for first time attendees

#1. Academy.17 - Your Mobile Meeting Guide

Use our Academy.17 app to browse all available lectures, workshops, papers and posters, and special events, add sessions and personal appointments to your schedule, complete session evaluations, and much more! Complimentary wifi will be provided in the convention center. Handouts are available on our website and through the Academy.17 app

#2. Onsite Registration and Badge Pickup

Registration packets and badges can be picked up at Registration Central in McCormick Place Lakeside Center. Registration opens at 1:00 PM on Tuesday, October 10 and will be open each day of the meeting. This year we will also provide satellite registration during limited hours at the Palmer House Hilton and Hyatt Regency Chicago. View the full registration schedule

#3. General Reminders

  • Most education will take place in McCormick Place Lakeside Center. 
  • Please remember to bring your water bottle with you as McCormick Place has plenty of opportunities for you to fill up. 
  • The Academy will not provide a bag this year at registration, so if you would prefer one to carry your belongings please plan accordingly. 
  • The temperature can fluctuate so please remember to dress in layers and bring a sweater with you to class. 
  • Any reception bars at events in the Palmer House Hilton will operate on a cash only basis (no credit cards), so please plan accordingly.

#4. CE Tracking

The process for CE tracking has changed this year. On your way into each CE session your conference badge will be scanned upon entry by room attendants. Attendees of Scientific Program paper and poster sessions will have their badge scanned both in and out. Remember you can also unofficially keep track of your CE sessions and hours using the Academy.17 app.

#5. Airport Transportation and Getting Around

Downtown Chicago is accessible by two major airports:

   -   O'Hare International Airport (located 17 miles from downtown)
   -   Midway International Airport (10 miles from downtown)

Check our travel discounts page for airport shuttle discounts. 
Also, be sure to check out the Chicago CVB page for tourist information.

The Academy will provide complimentary shuttle service from our contracted hotels to McCormick Place. Shuttles run beginning at 6:30 AM each day. Please plan on at least a 20 minute ride each way (more with traffic, weather, etc.) View the full shuttle schedule for more information. 

#6. Scientific Program

You can earn CE credits in 15 minute increments by attending Scientific Program Paper and Poster sessions (we have submitted for approval directly to state boards that don't automatically accept Academy education). View the schedule of Scientific Program sessions here. Join us on Thursday, October 12 from 4 to 6 PM in Exhibit Hall D for a special evening poster session combined with a cocktail hour. Stop by for some CE and a complimentary cocktail or beverage (with meeting registration)!

#7. CEE

Continuing Education with Examination (CEE) courses will be available each day. Information on obtaining CEE exams will be provided at the Education Desk in the convention center, as well as in the education rooms. Click here for a schedule of CEE courses. CEE courses are open to all full registrants and the exams are optional.

#8. Exhibit Hall

The Exhibit Hall will be open during the following hours:

Wednesday, October 11:     4 to 7 PM (Welcome Reception from 5 to 7 PM)
Thursday, October 12:         10 AM - 6 PM (Student focus hour from 10 - 11:30 AM, Attendee 
                                              Reception from 5 to 6 PM)

Friday, October 13:              10 AM - 3 PM  

All full conference registrants will receive free lunch on Thursday AND Friday in the Exhibit Hall. Please also join us for our Vision Theater sessions, featuring commercial programs conducted by exhibitors in a specially constructed theater on the exhibit floor. 

#9. Support the Foundation in Chicago

The American Academy of Optometry Foundation (AAOF) will be having its annual Silent Auction at Booth #539 in the Exhibit Hall. Stop by to view a wide array of exciting items that change daily! You can also support the AAOF in recognition of World Sight Day by participating in the Alcon Foundation Cycle for Sight 20/20 Challenge at Booth #631. The Alcon Foundation will donate $25,000 to the AAOF once attendees have cycled for a total of 2,020 minutes on stationary bikes. Students are especially encouraged to participate as the best school participation will be recognized.

#10. Product Information Breakfasts

Join the Academy for breakfast at 6:30 AM in the Palmer House Hilton on Thursday and Friday morning. All events are first-come, first-served. These seminars are sponsored by individual companies and no CE will be provided. Click here for the full Product Information Breakfast schedule.

If you have any questions about the meeting, please call our office at 321-319-4860 or email registration@aaoptom.org. We look forward to seeing you in Chicago!