The 22nd International Pig Veterinary Society Congress (IPVS 2012) is now over, and it feels like I was in a long and romantic dream that I will never be able to forget...
Finally, the first day of IPVS 2012
Banners with the IPVS 2012 logo welcomed participants from all over the world on the way from Jeju International Airport to ICC Jeju, the venue, and it was like Jeju Island had become an IPVS 2012 universe. Participants settled in at their hotels, and people who had applied for the Jeju Olle Trail Walking Program showed up at the venue on June 10, 2012. It was finally the start of the Congress!
While some of the participants were enjoying the natural beauty of Jeju Island by walking on the Olle Trail, the pre-congress was held in Hall 3A at the ICC Jeju. It was the first pre-congress in IPVS history, which provided producers in the swine industry with an opportunity to deepen their knowledge through lectures by prominent professionals in the field.
The highlight of the first day was the Welcome Reception. It was held in Ieodo Plaza, the outside area connected to the first floor of the ICC Jeju. Against the deep blue sea of Jeju Island, a cocktail party was prepared for the participants, and under the refreshing night breeze, guests enjoyed the evening and met up with old IPVS friends. The tunes played by the band enlivened the atmosphere even more.
Grand opening of the IPVS 2012 Congress
From 7 am on June 11, the registration desk was busy welcoming participants. The registration proceeded smoothly thanks to thorough preparations, and participants could attend the Opening Ceremony on time without any inconvenience.
The Opening Ceremony - it meant a lot to me. We wanted to express our gratitude to the participants for their constant interest in IPVS, and present the opportunity for them to regain confidence as swine veterinarians. After a grand laser show, I made a welcome remark to the attendees, and at that time, I moved the letter 'V' from IPVS and changed it into 'VIPS'. All our attendees were VIPs at our Congress.
Following the welcome reception, the Tom Alexander Memorial Lecture and Keynote Lecture were delivered by Dr A.W. (Dan) Tucker and Dr Julio Pinto respectively. Thanks to the exceptional lectures given by Dr Tucker and Dr Pinto (see picture below) as well as the other twelve lead speakers, our participants could gain an insight on the latest developments in the industry.
During the four Congress days, the venue was packed with participants. There was no area within the venue that was not full with people. On the main floor, eight huge exhibition booths from IPVS 2012 industry partners impressed and entertained the participants with products and various events. Of course, there was more. In the Event Hall located on the first floor, four industry sponsors, the bidding committees for IPVS 2016, and promising companies in the swine industry welcomed participants in their own way.
The special considerations that went into IPVS 2012
IPVS is a special meeting where professionals in the swine industry gather from the entire world. We tried to create the best environment for our participants to study and learn, and also put a big consideration on how to make them fully enjoy all the programs without any inconvenience.
Hopes that our participants would stay and take full advantage of the sessions led us to prepare lunch boxes as meals during the Congress. We prepared three kinds of lunch boxes (Western, Korean, and Vegetarian) of high quality, and prepared seats in and outside the Convention Center. Fortunately, our plan worked! I heard that not many people ventured outside individually to have lunch.
Jeju is an island with lots of hotels of excellent standard, and to help participants from the various hotels all over Jeju Island to move to and from the ICC Jeju, we operated a shuttle bus during the whole Congress period. The shuttle bus ran according to the IPVS 2012 official program schedule, so our guests could come to the venue and go back to their hotels without any inconvenience even when the official program finished late at night.
Farewell to the VIPs of IPVS 2012
As usual, the General Assembly and Bids for 2016 IPVS were held at the end of the IPVS Congress (see picture below). After the heated presentations and elections among the Brazil, China, and Ireland Committees, Ireland won as the host country for IPVS 2016. Following the congratulatory remarks for the Ireland Committee, the Mexico IPVS 2014 Committee infused participants with new hope for the next IPVS Congress.
In the presence of 1,100 guests, the Farewell Banquet, the last event of IPVS 2012, was held in Hall 5AB at the Convention Center. Performances by a pungmul band (traditional Korean percussion band) were arranged, and towards the end of the evening, all the guests were led outside by the band leader where the last event was waiting for them - fireworks! Some people enjoyed the cocktails prepared outside while others danced to the music or watched the fireworks. IPVS 2012 finally came to a close, bidding farewell to our VIPs for the next time we meet again.
Looking back at IPVS 2012
IPVS 2012 welcomed 3,099 participants from 60 countries as below:
• Total registered: 3,099
• Paying delegates: 2,410 (including 123 students)
• Accompanying persons: 219
• 1,008 contributed papers were presented through various scientific sessions (277 oral presentations and 731 posters under 8 topics) including the Tom Alexander Memorial Lecture, Keynote Lecture, Lead lectures, Concurrent Oral Sessions, and Poster Session. Also, a Pre-congress was organised for the first time in IPVS history.
What a Congress of success and glory! However, the biggest glory for the IPVS 2012 organizing committee was not only having prepared a well-organized congress, but also having the opportunity to be the one to forge an unforgettable memory on our co-workers from the world over who are used to creating great success stories under tough circumstances.
Many thanks to the people who cheered us and myself on. See you at IPVS 2014 in Cancún, Mexico from June 8 to June 11, 2014!