ACPA18 Snapshot: Pre-Convention Programs in Houston

With just weeks until the ACPA18 convention, here is some information about Pre-Convention Workshops, which are all still open for registration!

A Pre-Convention Workshop — “Pre-Con” for short — is a half- or full-day session on Saturday, 10 March 2018 or Sunday, 11 March 2018 offering the opportunity to deepen your knowledge and apply new concepts in any given topic area. These sessions are designed to be interactive spaces where community based learning is centered. To learn more about all the Pre-Cons we are offering this year at ACPA18, click here.

We have reached out to ACPA18 Pre-Con Presenters to share their ideas and experiences for some of the many great professional development opportunities available to you.

Kelvin E. Rutledge, a former Pre-Con attendee and ACPA18 Coordinating Presenter for “Professional Real Talk: Launching a Student Affairs Employment Campaign” stated, “These connections allowed me to bridge other networking opportunities. Pre-Cons have given many people the opportunity to dive deeper into a component of their job or a skill that they are looking to expand.”

Pre-Cons are a valuable opportunity to connect with members of Commissions, Coalitions, or Communities of Practice. Dr. Anne Hornak, Coordinating Presenter for ACPA18 full-day “Global Citizenship and Student Affairs” Pre-Con, said that she values this session type in part because it “allows commissions the ability to really connect with participants.”

The length of a Pre-Con allows you to apply a critical lens to the work we do centering racial justice and decolonization. One example of this, presented by Nanette Vega, “Latin@/x in Higher Education: Past, Present and Future,” is a full-day Pre-Con exploring what initiatives and programs higher education institutions have implemented and can apply to future opportunities in order to recruit, train, retain, and support Latin@/x people. The work and learning that begins at a Pre-Con can have a profound reach as a result of our growth in a given competency area and the ways we continue to contribute as members of our profession.

Pre-Cons themselves tend to offer more interaction than a traditional General Education Session. Dr. Aja Holmes, presenter for the half-day Pre-Con, “Ready to Supervise: Developing Your Own Supervisory Style,” stated, “I have presented on supervision since getting my doctorate and the room have been standing room only…I thought a pre-con would help to really work with those who want to become better supervisors.”

Coordinating Presenter Dr. Laura Pasquini is currently working with a team on a Pre-Con intended to challenge and expand the way participants (and by extension, students) construct and disseminate knowledge. “Becoming a Student Affairs Creator: Digital Makerspace Workshop” is an opportunity for participants to not only reflect on their own creativity, but also shed light on how the creation of digital content offers different ways to process information.“We are looking forward to facilitating this pre-conference workshop, as it is hands-on and interactive,” Dr. Pasquini said. “The extra time will encourage us to plan pedagogical implications and practice with technological tools, that we hope will encourage other educators to take this back to their work on campus and in the field. The longer form session will allow us to facilitate these learning sandbox sessions for participants can create audio podcasts, video clips, animation, and writing experiences.”

With all workshops grounded in theoretical frameworks to push you to deepen your learning and  opportunities to receive digital or physical resources to apply your learning, continued synthesis & application of your learning is encouraged. We hope you will consider taking advantage of one of these opportunities for education, growth, and professional development at ACPA18 this year!

  • If you have already registered for ACPA18, log into the Registrant Service Center to register for a Pre-Convention Workshop here
  • If you have not yet registered for ACPA18, be sure to select a Pre-Convention Workshop when you register here

If you have any questions about registering for a Pre-Convention Workshop, email Alex@acpa.nche.edu or call 202-835-2272.

 

Joe Bozzo is the Coordinator for Pre-Convention Workshops and Institute Programs for ACPA18. He is currently a Residence Hall Coordinator at the University of Delaware, where he has worked three years. Joe has also served ACPA in other capacities, most recently as the Convention Case Study Coordinator for the Graduate Students and New Professionals Community of Practice.


Think you may be interested in registering for a Pre-Convention Workshop? Below are some testimonials from past attendees:

I have attended a number of pre-convention sessions over the years, as well I have participated as a presenter at a couple. I find the sessions to be incredibly informative and engaging. The time affords the opportunity to take a deeper dive into a topical area.

The commission finds the pre-con sessions to help with our international colleagues travel to the convention. As well this affords the commission time to really connect with participants.

Pre-convention workshops and institutes offer ACPA participants a chance to engage with a topic on a deeper level. Additionally, the longer time frame allows a chance to meet more colleagues and network around a topic on interest and importance.

-Anne M. Hornak, PhD


I know that we are looking forward to facilitating this pre-conference workshop, as it is hands-on and interactive. The extra time will encourage us to plan pedagogical implications and practice with technological tools, that we hope will encourage other SA educators to take this back to their work on campus and in the field. The longer form session will allow us to facilitate these learning sandbox sessions for participants can create audio podcasts, video clips, animation, and writing experiences. We’re looking forward to it!

From previous pre-cons/institutes, I know that it has been helpful to give participants tangible resources to takeaway for value of the session. Past institutes, I have created a google doc or wiki space for archiving readings, resources, references and our slide deck. Here’s an example from ACPA 2016.

—Laura A. Pasquni, PhD


My experience as a participant for a Pre-Convention Workshop was productive and beneficial. It was great to build a small community to engage with and connect to prior to the full convention experience beginning. These connections allowed me to bridge other networking opportunities through the experience as well. I’ve heard other participants mention the pre-convention experience has allowed them to dive deeper into either a component of their job or a a subset of skills they are looking to expand.

I wanted to facilitate the concept of launching an employment campaign to bring a non-tradition lens from how to discuss and talk about job searches within higher education and student affairs. As someone who entered higher education from a corporate background, we often times do not discuss employment searches from an HR perspective. Thus, I want to help bridge the gap of student affairs praxis with the reality of business operations to help individuals be both strategic and successful.

I would encourage attendees to consider pre-conventions as a way to enhance your individual professional development in a focused way. While the convention schedule allows opportunities to gain a breadth of knowledge, the pre-convention sessions truly allow for more depth and critical engagement.

-Kelvin E. Rutledge


This is a time to go deeper into the conversation and really take some time with the material being presented. It is a good time for reflection.

I have presented on Supervision since getting my doctorate and the room have been standing room only, full to capacity ppl sitting on the floor- ask the ppl at Experian LOL  so I thought a precon would help to really work with those who want to become better supervisors.

Here is a chance to really dig deep into becoming a better supervisor and developing your own style.  This is a smaller setting than a large lecture, we can really get into the thick of it!

-Aja C. Holmes, Ph.D.

 

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