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NCRA Convention & Expo

Helpful Tips & Info

Helpful Tips & Info

Hilton San Francisco Union Square
333 O’Farrell Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
415-771-1400
www.hiltonsanfranciscohotel.com

New this Convention

There will be no voting stations onsite at this year’s event. Instead, members are asked to cast their votes regarding bylaws amendments via their phones, tablets, or computers. Free Wi-Fi is available in the hotel lobby. Voting begins two hours after the close of the Annual Business Meeting which will be held on Thursday, July 31, from 8:30 to 11 a.m. in the Plaza A room, and is open for 12 hours.

Wi-Fi

The Hilton offers Wi-Fi in guest rooms for $12.95 (per 24 hours). You can take advantage of the free Wi-Fi in the hotel lobby. Connect to the HHonors or ATT Wi-Fi networks, open your browser, and follow the instructions to log onto the internet. Wi-Fi is not accessible in the seminar and workshop rooms, the Expo Hall, or the convention center.

It’s a paper-lite event

NCRA is trying to reduce its carbon footprint and to decrease the amount of paper used at our events. This is an effort both to be responsible toward our environment and to increate eh quality and timelines of the resources provide through this learning experience. Electronic program material and presentation handouts will replace paper whenever possible and are accessible during the convention on our website, NCRA.org/convention, and in the NCRA Convention app (visit NCRA.org/mobile2014 on your phone’s browser and you will be redirected).

Mobile device/cell phone policy

As a courtesy to speaker and other attendees, please refrain from the use of cell phones during presentations. We ask that you kindly turn off your phone, or set it to silent or vibrate, and leave the session if you receive a call.

Sponsor a student

For a small donation, you can invest in the future of our profession by sponsoring a student who has attended the 2014 NCRA Convention & Expo. Attending the Convention can be a major event in a future court reporter’s career. You can choose to donate $25, $50, $100 or then entire student registration fee of $130. Following the Convention, the total amount of donations will be divided among all the student registrants and a refund will be issued to them. If you are interested in sponsoring a student, visit the NCRA Registration Desk in the Yosemite Foyer, Ballroom Level.

NCRA launches online testing in 2015

NCRA is very excited to move to online testing. NCRA heard the call by members for 1) more testing opportunities each year, 2) online testing, and 3) ability to pay for each test individually. Candidates will be able to test when they are ready, not just in May, August and November, as the current model dictates. Candidates will have increased convenience and the ability to test from the comfort of their home, office, library or anywhere that has a secure Internet connection and no distractions. Registration fees will now be priced per test which will result in cost savings for most candidates. To learn more about NCRA’s online testing process, be sure to attend the Sunday morning session from 10:15 – 11:45 a.m. with representatives from Realtime Coach, ProctorU and NCRA.

Antitrust compliance

NCRA members and event attendees must strictly comply with NCRA’s Antitrust Policy at all times. It is prohibited to have any discussion or agreement about prices, rates, and other terms upon which services will be provide; the division of customers or markets; whether to boycott or refuse to do business with any customer or firm; or to engage in any other collusive activity that will reduce competition. People violating these prohibitions may be barred from the meeting (an possibly subject to criminal fines and penalties). Please contact senior NCRA staff on site if you have any questions or to report any violation. A complete copy of NCRA’s Antitrust Policy is posted on NCRA’s website.

No smoking policy

For the health and comfort of all attendees, smoking is not permitted at any NCRA function. The Hilton Union Square is a non-smoking facility. Guests wishing to smoke must exit the building.

Responsible drinking policy

Recognizing the emphasis on networking through receptions and social events, and the potential for alcohol abuse, NCRA encourages attendees to drink responsibly. Supporting this policy, NCRA offers nonalcoholic beverages at all functions where alcohol is served. Alcohol will not bet served to anyone under the age of 21.

Lost and found

For your convenience, a lost and found box is kept at the Registration Desk where you can bring found items or report lost items. NCRA is not responsible for lost personal property.

Personal safety

Your safety and security is important, so please remember to observe standard travel safety practices during your stay in San Francisco.

  • Familiarize yourself with the nearest emergency exits.
  • While in your guestroom, do not answer the door without verifying who it is. If you did not request service and a person claims to be a hotel employee, call the front desk to confirm before opening the door.
  • Do not wear your name badge outside of the hotel.
  • When exploring the city, please walk in groups and let someone know where you are going when you leave the hotel.

Attendees are responsible at all times for the security of personal items such as purses, laptops, electronic equipment, etc. Keep your personal belongings secure and keep alert.

Medical emergencies

If you require medical attention during the conference, please contact the Registration Desk or dial “444” from any house phone. The nearest medical facility is:

Saint Francis Memorial Hospital
900 Hyde Street
San Francisco, CA 94109
Phone: 415-353-6000

saintfrancismemorial.org

NCRA member services

NCRA loves its members
Be sure to stop by and visit the NCRA Membership Central booth #112 in the Expo Hall to learn more about the latest your association is doing for you and the court reporting profession. See previews of new services and programs, and pick up some fun giveaways.

Government relations and NCRA PAC
Visit the Government Relations and NCRA Political Action Committee booth #106 to learn more about NCRA’s federal initiatives and what NCRA is doing to promote the court reporting profession on Capitol Hill. Whether you are a firm owner, a student, or a reporting profession in the trenches each day, the NCRA Government Relations team can tell you how to protect your profession and get involved. While you are in the booth, take a fun picture with several famous political figures, make contribution to the NCRA PAC, and take home fun souvenir. If that’s not enough, some of last year’s “Men of Court Reporting” will be there. Come say hello!

NCRA store

Save on shipping, buy onsite
The NCRA store, located at booth #118 in the Expo Hall, is the perfect place to pick up the latest in 2014 Convention & Expo gear including official t-shirts and other keepsakes. Other items available include the latest in NCRA publications, reference guides, resources, and other fun stuff. Save money by avoiding shipping costs associated with purchasing items from the online store, and ask about Convention specials and discounts being offered onsite.

Hot off the press – Court Reporter Survival Guide: Student Success Stories
Stop by the NCRA store located at booth #118 and pick up your copy of Court Reporter Survival Guide: School Success Stories, a collection of insights and reflections about making it through court reporting school by freelancers, officials, CART captioners and current students. Read about the teachers who challenged them, the friends and family who inspired them, and the drills, tests and hours of practice that nearly did them in, until they reached the ultimate reward: joining the ranks of the Keepers of the Record.

Be part of NCRA’s next book and receive a free gift
In a profession that inspires constant improvement with rigorous credentialing standards, a demanding schedule, and the drive to always find ways to write faster and shorter, achieving the right work-life balance can be difficult. Share your thoughts about these questions and receive 15 percent off your onsite NCRA store purchase plus a free gift. Visit the NCRA store, located in booth #118 to contribute to NCRA’s next book.

  • How do you find balance in the court reporting profession?
  • What keeps you striving for personal greatness, and in what ways do you release the stress of the day?
  • How do you hang on and let go, all at the same time?
  • How does court reporting fit into your life, and how does your life fit into your career?
Save the dates

2014 NCRA Legal Video Conference
October 17-19
Las Vegas, NV
Westin Las Vegas Hotel, Casino & Spa

2015 NCRA Firm Owners Executive Conference
February 8-10
Palm Desert, CA
JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa

2015 NCRA TechCon
To Be Announced

2015 NCRA Convention & Expo
July 30 – August 2
New York City, NY
Hilton New York

Cancellation/refund policy

Prior to the convention, registration may be canceled upon written request only.

Cancellations must be received in writing by July 9, 2014, to be fully refunded. A $50 cancellation fee will be applied to cancellations received between July 9 and July 25. Refunds will NOT be granted after July 25. "No-shows" are responsible for full payment of the convention registration fees. All requests for cancellations, refunds, and transfers should be sent to meetings@ncra.org.

Substitutions/transfers

If you are unable to attend for any reason, you can transfer your registration to another person without penalty. Simply send a copy of your confirmation with a letter/message stating your request along with a completed registration form for the person replacing you. Substitution and transfer requests should be sent to meetings@ncra.org.

First-time attendees

Welcome! If this is your first NCRA Convention and you would like to connect with veteran NCRA members and convention-goers and other first-time attendees during the conference, please be sure to check the appropriate box on your registration form. Please also plan to attend the special "Only New Once" Reception on Thursday from 6–6:30 p.m., immediately before the Opening Reception. These events are designed to provide an opportunity to meet and network with other attendees in a casual setting.

Continuing education units (CEUs)

Registrants will receive continuing education units and credit for all workshops and seminars they attend during the convention. The 2014 NCRA Convention & Expo offers up to 2.45 CEUs.

EventCEUs
Pre-convention intensive workshops 0.70
1.5 hour concurrent seminars 0.15
1 hour concurrent seminars 0.10
Punctuation Workshop 0.45
Premier Session 0.10
Student Seminar NA
Certified Reporting Instructor (CRI) Orientation
1.30
Teachers Workshop 0.60
Realtime Systems Administrator Workshop CEUs 1.00

Receiving CEUs

As long as you are registered for this event and check in with the registration desk to pick up your name badge, CEU credit will be awarded based on your registration category (i.e. one day, two days, all inclusive, etc.) and will be applied automatically to your record after the Convention. Credit for this event will appear on your NCRA online transcript within 12 business days after the conclusion of the event.

If you do NOT attend all sessions for which you are registered, you are expected to complete and submit the CEU change form available at the Registration Desk and online NCRA.org/ceuforms..

To check your transcript, please visit NCRA.org/transcripts.

For more information about NCRA's Continuing Education Program, please visit NCRA.org/ce.

Conference content

The content of presentations, seminars, and workshops are the work and opinions of the presenters and do not necessarily reflect the policies or positions of NCRA.

Photography disclosure

NCRA takes photographs during its meetings and events for use in Association advertising, newsletters, and other promotional materials, whether in print, electronic, or other media, including the NCRA website and social media sites. By participating in this conference, you grant NCRA the right to use your name and photograph for such purposes.

People with disabilities

NCRA strives to hold meetings that are accessible to all. If you require special assistance, auxiliary aids, or other reasonable accommodations to fully participate in this event, please stop by the Registration Desk for assistance. Your information will remain confidential. Because many arrangements require early planning, requests received on site cannot be guaranteed; however, we will make every attempt to accommodate you.

Special dietary requests

NCRA selects menu items we hope everyone will enjoy. We realize that some individuals have dietary restrictions and food allergies. Attendees who notify us about food allergies or dietary restrictions that prevent them from eating the standard entrée selection (Awards Luncheon) are provided with a vegan/gluten-free meal based as closely as possible on their specific dietary needs.

Due to the large number of attendees, substitutions for the vegan/gluten-free meal or the standard conference meals may not be possible. Please make alternative meal arrangements if you have several food allergies or very specific dietary restrictions, as our food and beverage options may not meet your needs.

NCRA will do its best to accommodate all dietary requests; however, because the focus is on food allergies, we cannot always guarantee requests such as low-fat, low-salt, low-carb, sugar-free, etc. Alternate salads and desserts may not be available.

Name badge policy

Badges will be issued to all registered attendees and must be worn to gain entrance to concurrent seminars, receptions, networking events, the Expo Hall, and all other official convention activities. For your personal safety, please do not wear your name badge outside of the hotel.

Personal safety

To help ensure your personal safety and peace of mind throughout the convention, please be sure to provide your emergency contact information on your registration form. There is also space to write down medical conditions or allergies you may have.

In cases of emergency during the convention, NCRA may need to communicate with attendees via text message and/or email. Please be sure to provide your cell phone and email on your registration form for these purposes.

If you are sharing a hotel room with another convention attendee, we also recommend that the full name of each guest be provided when making a reservation. This will help to ensure that everyone can be found and accounted for in cases of emergency.

Conference attire

San Francisco's average high temperature in late July and early August is 67 degrees and the average low is 55 degrees. Please plan accordingly. Business casual attire is appropriate for all conference activities. Meeting room temperatures tend to be cool; as such, we recommend you bring a sweater or jacket to the sessions.

Attire for the President’s Red Carpet Party is all about glitz, glamour and red hot style … this is your chance to dress up and wow the crowd as you stroll the red carpet. So let your star shine; the party starts at 7 p.m., but we’ll be dressed to the nines! Formal attire is encouraged but not required.