One of the things that surprised me the most when I became a Regional Mentor for the Midwest Region of PASS was how few groups there were in my little three state AO(Area of Operations). I mean seriously, you can swing a dead cat and hit nay number of .NET user groups but there is a serious lack of SQL Server user groups. So take this as a call to arms to get involved!

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Starting a PASS chapter is a LOT easier than you may think and PASS’s Regional Mentor program is there to help you out! Seriously,what does it take to become a PASS chapter?

  1. Sign and fulfill the Official PASS Chapter Agreement
  2. Post PASS logo, link to the PASS web site, state that they are a PASS Chapter, and promote PASS events that may occur,
  3. Attend the Chapter Leadership Meeting at the PASS Community Summit, if they are attending the Summit,
  4. Ensure that meetings contain SQL Server content,
  5. Inform PASS of any updates pertaining to contact information, change in leadership, and participate in quarterly chapter update reports,
  6. Encourage all members to join PASS, membership is free so there is no reason not to join.

Best of all, besides the fame and notoriety that you will gain from your peers by starting a local PASS chapter there are also other tangible benefits as well!

FREE Web Site Hosting
Through the partnership of PASS and Maximum ASP, Web site hosting is available for FREE to your chapter group.

FREE Summit Registration
Each chapter will receive one complimentary registration to the PASS Community Summit for the president or volunteer in a leadership role. Plus, one representative from your chapter will be eligible to participate in chapter leadership meetings and hospitality gatherings in conjunction with the Summit.  Further information will be sent in the few months prior to the Summit.

Live Meeting Account
PASS, in conjunction with Microsoft, offers its chapters one complimentary Live Meeting Account to record their meetings and share desktops with remote members.

TechNet Plus subscription
Offered to chapters by Microsoft in conjunction with UGSS

Giveaways
Through our partnership with Microsoft  and other vendors, throughout the year various items are donated to the PASS Chapter Program.  PASS will distribute giveaways to chapters based on availability. These items can be used to drive attendance at your meetings or help reward a hard working volunteer or member.

Networking Opportunities
Besides being able to contact all the PASS chapter presidents via the list server, there are various sessions held at the annual PASS Community Summit, where chapter leaders and volunteers have the opportunity to join together and exchange ideas.

 

So if you are interested in starting up your own local chapter just drop me a line or check out the PASS website at  http://www.sqlpass.org/PASSChapters/BecomeAChapter.aspx

 

Cheers!

AJ