BIRMINGHAM — Assistant Editor Maria Woodie interviews Water Quality Association’s (WQA) Executive Director David Westman in the March issue of Water Technology.
In this special Q&A, Westman offers a little insight into WQA’s goals for 2015, the Modular Education Program (MEP) and what to expect at WQA Aquatech USA 2015.
As the water industry prepares to attend WQA Aquatech USA, which is being co-presented by WQA and Amsterdam RAI in Las Vegas, here is a closer look at this exclusive interview between Water Technology and Westman, regarding what visitors can expect at this year’s convention.
Water Technology: Each year at WQA Aquatech USA, WQA offers a state of the industry/market update on regulatory efforts and general market trends. Can you provide our readership with a sneak peak of what will be discussed at this year’s industry update address?
David Westman: I think attendees at WQA Aquatech USA 2015 will definitely notice our focus on education as a continuing theme throughout the event, including the industry update at our Opening General Session. There will be five different learning tracks available, each one tailored to fit the educational needs of a different type of water treatment professional. They should also expect to hear a lot about WQA’s Modular Education Program (MEP), which we developed specifically to mirror the precise training needs of today’s water treatment companies specializing in POU and POE technologies. We’ll have stations set up in the trade show hall where attendees can try out the MEP for themselves and learn how it can be incorporated into a company’s training program.
In terms of general market trends, we expect to release the results from WQA’s 2015 Consumer Opinion Study at the convention as well. In the past, our members have been very interested in the data gathered in this national study of consumers’ perceptions on water quality and water treatment.
WT: On Oct. 13, 2014, WQA published a news release regarding the boost in the U.S. economy and the correlating growth in marketing opportunities for foreign companies. Please explain the global presence expected for this year’s WQA Aquatech USA event.
DW: Last year visitors from a whopping 58 different countries traveled to Orlando for our show, and we expect an even greater international presence for WQA Aquatech USA 2015. In fact, we’re currently ahead of last year’s pace in both domestic and international registrations. Also, exhibit spaces in our International Pavilion have been moving fast and we expect to sell out shortly. A total of 40 companies based outside North America have already enrolled as exhibitors for the 2015 show.
WT: Overall, how will WQA Aquatech USA 2015 compare to previous events, and are there any new additions planned?
DW: There will be lots of new and different things to look forward to at this year’s convention and trade show. Regardless of whether someone attends every year or hasn’t attended WQA Aquatech USA in several years, we think they’ll be pleasantly surprised with these improvements, which are strategically designed to deliver even more value to participating companies and attendees.
This year’s show will have a noticeable focus on education and networking opportunities, most noticeably our new “Ask the Expert” Q&A sessions. We’ll be setting up several lounge areas around the trade show hall where attendees will have the opportunity to learn about select products and services, directly from the experts, in a relaxed, informal format.
You can find the entire Q&A featured in the March issue here.