ICAP is half over as of today and while I've been a Bad Girl and not really a Team Player I've still enjoyed it. (My most successful strategy is to remove my name plate from the conference room so people don't notice an empty spot when I play hooky.)
Best conference benefit outside of sessions: swimming in an outdoor heated pool while it's snowing.
Worst feeling resulting from talking to other participants: homesickness for Washington DC.
Biggest surprising insight: actually considering other career choices. Why the heck not join the Foreign Service? It's my training after all. Hmmm...McKinsey sounds interesting. Or, I wouldn't mind being an Africa analyst for the Pentagon/Commerce/Congressional Research Service.
Corollary surprising insight: my career counselor telling me that I could get any job I want.
Geographic factors: (1) as much as I'd love to move to CA, I'd have to work in the public service or the private sector to do it. (2) Little Rock is on the edge of the known universe as far as international careers are concerned.
Proudest alumni moments: (1) meeting a FSO who went to Cal when the football team actually made it to the Rose Bowl. (2) people thinking that I'm exceptionally smart since Foreign Policy magazine named SAIS the best Masters Program in its November/December 2005 issue.
I think the SAIS name goes a long way. Whenever I regret all the student loan payments I make, I think about the fact that my resume carries a lot more weight.
It's funny to think about working elsewhere... CRS is really great. Why is it natural for the grass to be greener?