When I discovered an interest in genetic genealogy for my own personal/family purposes, I never imagined I would happen into a group as interesting and passionate as genetic genealogists.
Most people who become "genetic" genealogists start out as genealogists with no knowledge of DNA, genetic inheritance, or chromosomes. Over time, they gather knowledge about the science behind DNA and how the molecule links people together. Analyzing and comparing DNA between people (whether they are "family" that is close or distant) can fill in information and connect dots. It is only natural that consumer genomics and direct-to-consumer tests have made DNA testing commonplace in genealogical research in recent years.
There are a number of gatherings of genealogists each year -- too many to mention as genealogy has become the second most popular hobby in the United States, behind gardening.
For those with a special interest in the application of genetics to genealogy, there are a few special times when focused education is available in-person. The Salt Lake City-based SLIG course is one, and the Pittsburgh-centered GRIP course is another. Since I am East Coast-based, GRIP has been an easier location.
Some genealogy enthusiasts attend these courses to learn more about traditional genealogical research (i.e. non-DNA stuff). There are intro level courses and some for the advanced. These institutes have a little of something for everybody.
I won't be attending GRIP for the full week this year as I did in 2016, but I am excitedly anticipating the one day I get to spend with CeCe Moore and the Advanced DNA course attendees.
I look forward to that time together to present cases, explore questions, and learn as much (or more!) from attendees as they do from me.
Everything about the intersection of genetics, genealogy, family history, and health GRIPS my attention (ha! pun intended!). Each chance I get to improve the way I communicate about DNA is welcome.
Look forward to seeing some of you in Pittsburgh in a few weeks!