AG programming is an eclectic mix of presentations given by Mensans and external speakers — interesting deep-dives into topics ranging from, quite literally, the history and cultural legacy of high heels to Renaissance art to developments in cryptocurrency. The ideal AG speaker session is thought-provoking, packed with interesting information, and illustrative of the speaker's personal or professional passion.
Outside of speaker sessions, programming follows one of a handful of tracks, including Meet-and-Greets, games and tournaments, Leadership Development Workshops, and programming just for kids. Taking a look at last year’s schedule is the best way to get a feel for the types of programming you can typically expect at the AG.
Member speaker sessions are 60-minute presentations on any topic. Pretty much anything (within reason) goes: watchmaking, a novel breakthrough in biochemistry, board game design, or the origin and cultural significance of the semicolon — if you care about something enough to share it with us, odds are you’ll find a group eager to learn more about it. The majority of speaker sessions are lead by a single speaker, but duos and panels are by no means out of the question.
Eager to share your passion with us? Start by submitting a program proposal below. Member sessions are limited this year due to space restrictions, and preference will be given to individuals who have not spoken previously at an AG.
A fixture at every Annual Gathering, Meet-and-Greets are pretty much what they sound like: a dedicated space for your group to meet and, well, greet. Meet who? we can hear you asking. Well, anyone, really, but here are some examples of Meet-and-Greets you can typically find at an AG:
And then there are oddities like the 12 fellas named David who attend every AG and like to hang out and chop it up for a bit while they’re in town. Good guys, The Daves. If you would like to meet up with folks with similar interests while you’re at the AG, submit a Meet-and-Greet request, and we’ll do what we can to find space for you.
Games — board games, card games, party games like Mafia or Werewolf — are an essental part of the AG. In addition to what many have described as a “palatial” Games Room, the Annual Gathering features a full schedule of volunteer-hosted tournaments, from dice games to deck-building and more, in its own dedicated space. Want to host your own tournament? Let us know.
Business or pleasure? Both, actually. The AG is chock full of fun and games, but being the clever devils we are, we take advantage of having so many brainy folks under the same roof by devoting time to teaching and learning how to become better and more effective volunteers and leaders and to share our best practices.
Bringing your kiddos to the AG? You’ll find plenty of programming that’s fun for all ages. And the Spark! program, sponsored by the Mensa Foundation, includes structured programming specifically for kids ages 4-12, enabling them to have their own unqiue AG experience.
We’re all ears when it comes to programming and speaker suggestions. Would you like to suggest a presentation topic or recommend a terrific external speaker? Let us know!