The following post was written by Janine Hardy who received the University Library sponsored scholarship to attend OpenCon 2014 in Washington DC.
OpenCon was an amazing experience. The discussions focused around Open Education, Open Source material, and Open Access for everyone. There were participants from so many different countries that were extremely passionate about these topics. Presenters were so passionate that they even paid for their own accommodations and flights. Topics revolved around open journals and being able to access information and use it to advance studies. The highlight for me was listening to Jack Andraka who discovered a tool for detecting pancreatic cancer. He was frustrated by not having access to journal articles and the expense of those articles. This was an “I get it” moment for me. As a university student we have access to so many journal articles that are subscribed to by the university and I took this for granted. Open Access provides everyone with the information needed to advance education, science, etc.