"Professional development is crucial in maintaining our skills and abilities, as well as furthering our knowledge. The issue is that when budgets require downsizing, the first item, usually, to be trimmed or cut is training and research. Forensic practitioners are required to keep abreast of technological advancement and assure the judicial and public communities that best practices are being implemented in our disciplines and practices. Today's IAI has grown into the most prestigious professional association of its kind in the world, with more than 7,000 members from the United States and many other countries. The advancement of forensic disciplines through education continues to be one of the top priorities of the Association."