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40th Annual Conference Schedule & Program
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Schedule at a Glance


Saturday, March 28

8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.     Regional Leadership Training – invitation only

11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.   Optional Pre-Conference Tour – additional fee

1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.     Pre-Conference Workshop – additional fee

1:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.     Registration


Sunday, March 29

7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.     Registration

8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.   Demonstration Opportunities

8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.     Expo

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.   First Timer’s Welcome

10:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Keynote and Brunch

12:15 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.   Region 1 & 2 Meetings

12:15 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.   Region 3, 4 & 5 Visit Expo

1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.     Region 1 & 2 Visit Expo

1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.     Region 3, 4 & 5 Meetings

3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.     Refreshments in Expo

4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.     Special Interest Sessions, Block A


Monday, March 30

8:00 a.m. – 8:45 a.m.     CCEP Breakfast – invitation only

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.   One-on-One Exhibitor Appointments

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.   Demonstration Opportunities

9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.   General Interest Sessions, 3 concurrent sessions

10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Roundtables

11:30 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. Town Hall

12:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.   Awards & Recognition Luncheon

2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.     Special Interest Sessions, Block B

2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.     Institute – additional fee

3:15 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.     Special Interest Sessions, Block C

4:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.     Affinity Group Sessions


Tuesday, March 31

8:00 a.m. – 8:45 a.m.     Business Meeting

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.   Strengths Based Leadership Institute – additional fee

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.   Special Interest Sessions, Block D

10:15 a.m. – 10:45 a.m. Topic Expert Sessions

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Special Interest Sessions, Block E

12:15 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.   Networking Luncheon

1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.     Special Interest Sessions, Block F

3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.     Closing Keynote – immediately followed by:

4:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.     Presidential Presentation and ACCED-I 41st Annual Conference Preview: Albuquerque, NM 

6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.     Closing Event at Rhode Island Convention Center


Wednesday, April 1

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.   Optional Post-Conference Tour, Brown University – additional fee


Saturday, March 28

Experience Newport Tour

11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

$75.00 member/$90 nonmember – includes transportation and lunch

Minimum participants: 25

Maximum participants: 55

Arrive early and take time to experience the coastal community of Newport, RI. Starting with lunch at Salve Regina University’s Young Building, home of the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy. Learn how this historic mansion with a ballroom built to accommodate President Ulysses S. Grant’s visit to Newport in 1869, has been adapted to serve the Pell Center’s programs based on turning ideas into action through an informed citizenry. After lunch, you will enjoy an academic and historic walking tour of Salve Regina’s oceanside campus set on seven contiguous 19th-century estates. Following the tour you will be taken to downtown Newport where you will be free to browse the shops, museums or grab a drink on your own or with friends.

  • This tour is available on a first-come, first-serve basis
  • The minimum of 25 attendees must be made by March 6, after this date if minimum is not met tour will be cancelled and attendee notified with refund
  • All tours are a firm commitment and cannot be cancelled
  • All tours are non-refundable once purchased, unless cancelled by ACCED-I


The Power of You: How to Master the Skills to Position You for Success Workshop

1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

$99 – student/$139 – member/$169 – nonmember – includes afternoon break

Maximum attendance: 40

Presented by: Michael J. Lyons, International Speaker, Author, and Meetings Industry Consultant

Back by popular demand, professional speaker Michael J. Lyons will do a deep dive on the session he presented at the ACCED-I 39th Annual Conference in Pittsburgh.  In our fast-moving, ever-changing industry, mastering multiple competencies as a professional is vitally important if you aspire to move up in your career and become a strong leader. Regardless of your current skill set, level of experience, title, or responsibilities, the ongoing expansion of your career tool kit must continue daily, with the end goal  of becoming a well-rounded professional ready to assume positions of increased responsibility as you progress in your career.  Learning how to build and fine tune strong relationships, grow as a leader, and enhance your personal brand, among other skills – are all important components to achieving your mission.

In this in-depth presentation, workshop moderator Michael J. Lyons will guide the audience through an entertaining, interactive discussion that will yield some important and useful outcomes.

Learning Objectives:

  • Improve your professional reputation and personal brand
  •  Enhance your leadership skills
  •  Map out your career plan
  •  Develop consistent positive “self-talk” and self-confidence
  •  Learn how to pursue your passion
  •  Hone your communication and public speaking skills
  •  Manage your time more effectively


Sunday, March 29

First Timer’s Welcome

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.

If this is your first ACCED-I conference, be sure to join us before the opening keynote to meet key ACCED-I members, fellow attendees and gain an understanding of how the conference works. Get connected right away to ensure a successful three days.  For those that have signed up for the connections program, this will be the place to meet up with your connector/connection.


Keynote and Brunch

10:15 a.m. – Noon



8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

12:15 p.m. – 1:15 p.m. – Dedicated time for Regions 3, 4 and 5

1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. – Dedicated time for Regions 1 and 2

3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. – Refreshments in Expo

Be sure to visit the Expo and learn about the many products and services that can help your operation. We will have games, an opportunity to get a business head shot from 12:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m., product, and cash giveaways to add value to your time in the Expo.  An afternoon break will be provided in the Expo hall from 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Regional Meetings

12:15 p.m. – 1:15 p.m. – Regions 1 and 2

1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. – Regions 3, 4 and 5

Join your region for an informational meeting that will cover Association business, your regional leadership, activities, and more. 


Special Interest Sessions – Block A

4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.


Brand Equity: Contextualizing Your Business with Campus Partners for Success

Presented by: Leslie Gerretse, Senior Manager of Hospitality Services, University of California, Riverside

Do you ever feel like managing your conference and event business in partnership with other campus departments is an uphill climb? Learn some proven strategies focused on contextualizing your business and applying value that directly coincides with your campus partners' own business objectives.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn the importance of a strong brand and how to get your team on board with being a steward of that brand
  • Understand ways to add relevant context and value of your business to any partner on campus
  • Leave with proven strategies and tools to apply to your own campus partners in order to make your team more effective and efficient when collaborating with other departments on campus


We need to talk about Gen Z: 10 Practical Ways to Lead and Influence them - a 2.0 Approach

Presented by: Steve Robertson, CEO, Julian Krinsky Program Development & Management

Even if you attended the Gen Z session at last year's conference, this is the 2.0 version, and you're going to be delighted, surprised, and inspired to pursue this generation and lead them well. Currently, Gen Z is the only generation entering the workforce, bringing this conversation to the forefront, even more urgently than ever.

Learning Objectives:

  • Identify why it's important to know and understand Gen Z
  • Realize why Gen Z matters to us all
  • Discover practical approaches to influencing and leading them well


Risky Business: Leveraging Liability and Event Insurance

Presented by: Stacie Kroll, Five Colleges Inc. and Marjorie Lemmon, Yale University

Do you worry about your institution’s liability for events on your campus? Help is here! This session will give the events manager (or the person responsible for addressing risks presented by special events) what he or she needs to know to apply risk management principles to events from start to finish. Attendees will also learn about URMIA's updated Tenants' and Users' Liability Insurance Policy (TULIP) program. TULIP is designed to provide insurance to third parties who are using your college or university setting for special events. During the session, learn how to utilize TULIP, who is covered, limits, ease of use, automatic event documentation and how to lighten the workload of the institution administrator.

Learning Objectives:

  • Gain valuable tips from a practicing risk manager to reduce liability and protect your institution from loss
  •  Use the web-based TULIP on your own campus and understand the benefits of using TULIP
  • Define the coverages, limits and classes of special event coverage allowed under TULIP


A Large Commencement Ceremony and a Small Commencement Ceremony – A Study of Contrasts and Similarities

Presented by: Kavinda Arthenayake, Director, College Events & Conference Services, Commencement and Patricia Nolin, Coordinator, College Events & Conference Services, Commencement, Rhode Island College

Oregon State University (Corvallis, OR) holds one ceremony that graduates over 4,200 graduates receiving their actual diplomas with over 24,500 guests in attendance.  Rhode Island College (Providence, RI) holds one ceremony that graduates 1,200 graduates with over 9,500 guests in attendance. One is held in outside (rain or shine) in a football stadium; the other in an indoor ceremony in a hockey arena. One is a well-established ceremony with over 40 years of established traditions. The other – an evolving ceremony with adaptations of new traditions and was completely reimagined and reorganized in 2019. What do these two very different ceremonies have in common or not?  This session will compare and contrast many aspects of these two ceremonies including planning processes, budgets, institutional traditions, President/Provost/leadership involvement, change management, institutional governance, etc.  Will also compare what both ceremonies have in common: planning and executing a student/family centered, inclusive ceremony that celebrates our graduates.

Learning Objectives:

  • No two Commencement ceremonies are the same but how do you plan and execute a ceremony that focuses on our graduates and their family and friends.
  • How to incorporate ceremony changes/change management through institutional governance process.
  • How to advocate for changes in your ceremony by detailed documentation of your ceremony.
  • How to plan, manage and execute a very large ceremony and similarly, how to plan and manage a mid-sized ceremony.


Working Together for a Positive On-Site Experience

Presented by: Karen Lew Feirman, VP-Varsity Spirit Camp Administration and Nikki Garces, Director of University Relations, Varsity Spirit

This session will present a comprehensive overview of a positive host and customer relationship. With the inclusion of technology in our everyday world, the personal and practical interactions have significantly changed. The visiting group should be considered a customer and partnership developed to provide a mutual benefit for both organizations. During this session, the presenters will discuss a variety of collaborative ideas and ways to promote everyone involved. Let's get back to the basics and discuss best practices, operations, and creating a positive environment on campus for everyone.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand creative ways to work together and develop recruitment ideas for the host institution
  • Be able to review policy and determine best practices for working together with groups; human communication and relations will be discussed as a means to improve partnerships
  • Leave with an appreciation for developing a partnership with visiting groups on campus

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Monday, March 30

General Interest Sessions

9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.



10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

Roundtable discussions offer the opportunity to informally exchange information with your colleagues on a variety of subjects. Topics will be announced in March.


Awards and Recognition Luncheon

12:30 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.

Gather for lunch as we recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of your ACCED-I colleagues at our Association’s annual awards program.


Special Interest Sessions – Block B

2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.


ACCED-I’s Collegiate Conference & Events Professional (CCEP) Certification Program
Presented by: Sarah Goodrich, CCEP, MS, Conference Services Director, East Stroudsburg University; Mary Kay Baker, CCEP, Director of Conference & Special Housing Services, Lehigh University; and Matthew Jauregui, CCEP, Associate Director, Conference & Events Services, Loyola Marymount University

This session is for CCEP candidates, current CCEPs and members interested in learning more about the CCEP certification program. The CCEP program encourages volunteering, leadership, and service to the Association. We will cover educational, volunteer and leadership requirements; responsibilities of mentors/mentees; and the essay writing section. Candidates often encounter challenges in completing the certification and benefit a great deal in their professions. The CCEP program follows criteria developed by the Council for Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS), of which ACCED-I is one of 36-member organizations.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn about requirements needed to enter the CCEP program
  • Understand the program challenges and how to complete the certification
  • Discover how the CCEP program can benefit you professionally and personally


High Profile Venues:  Welcome to the Spotlight!

Presented by: Mariellynn Maurer, CCEP, Director, W&M Conference & Events Services, The College of William & Mary

In July of 2017, with only two weeks’ notice to launch, we learned that the university was leasing a performing arts theatre in the heart of our downtown tourist district and management of the venue would fall to our department.  The venue was one that was near and dear to longtime community members, a highlight in the tourist district, home to several community arts programs, and full of a rich history. Needless to say, there was nothing low profile about the university's decision to lease the space and begin use of it as a temporary home to an academic department during our own Fine Arts District renovation.   In our case, the high profile venue was a theatre, but we all probably have a similar high profile venue at our university.  Regardless of the type of venue you may have, there’s so much that is put under the spotlight as announcements are made, press releases go out, and your team is starting to receive questions from all angles before you’ve had the chance to iron out all the details of your venue.  Join us as we approach this high profile venue case study and consider systems, policies, media, vendors, staffing, marketing, contracting, collaboration, and ongoing management of what is now a shared space between two campus departments and several community groups with vested interests.  Let’s dive into ways to keep your composure when the spotlight is on you!

Learning Objectives:

  • Participants will learn points of consideration when responding to media inquiries, launching a new website, and assuming an existing social media platform for a high-profile venue.
  • Participants will be able to identify major partnerships needed when assuming responsibility for and launching a high profile venue.  Additionally, they will be able to understand how to build the necessary systems, policies, and procedures in a condensed time frame.
  • Participants will be able to identify tools, skills, and methods that can be applied to high profile venues at their own institutions.


So you have been asked to Start a NEW Conferences & Events Program?

Presented by: Kavinda Arthenayake, Director, College Events & Conference Services, Commencement; Patricia Nolin, Coordinator, College Events & Conference Services, Commencement; Kathi Bacon, Coordinator, Conference & Events, Rhode Island College

Rhode Island College established a formal Conference & Events Department in February, 2018 and a director was hired in May, 2018 to run the department. This new department was “assembled” with a variety of different functions to support events and conferences on campus, including commencement. Functions of the new department are "evolving" to: assisting, and managing conferences and events, Commencement, Signature events, Welcome Center, Digital Signage in selected locations on campus, Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts, The College Box Office, and overseeing the non-academic use of EMS for the campus. This session will take you through how the new department started developing including creating an identity; developing non-academic use of space operational policies and processes; institutional buy-in and governance, developing room/space reservation/usage policies; developing marketing plans, budgeting; and challenging aspects of establishing a new department on campus.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand your institutional culture, governance structure, and state rules, policies and laws applicable to your operation
  • Obtain institutional buy-in; supporting service provider buy-in; and how to navigate politics
  • Developing event mapping as it relates to the institution and its governance policies

Protecting Youth on a Small Campus: A Case Study in Maximizing Limited Staffing and Resources for the Safety of All

Presented by: Michelle Wu, CCEP, Director, Conference Services, Illinois Wesleyan University

It’s the nightmare every organization dreads—being forced to react to a situation that could have been anticipated or prevented. This is the place Illinois Wesleyan University (IWU) found itself one summer when it realized it needed a stronger, more robust protection of minors’ policy--immediately. Delegating a committee with little prior experience, IWU worked quickly to evolve its procedure from a partially constructed process to a clear, comprehensive system addressing overnight camps, private lessons, and university events. This session will work through IWU’s experience and the strategy it employed to maximize safety and minimize risk despite financial and human resource challenges at small, private, liberal arts institution. It will look at how IWU navigated its legal and ethical obligations without a compliance officer or in-staff legal counsel. Sharing achievements, solutions, and the missteps along the way, this case study will provide guidance specifically tailored to smaller campuses.

Learning Objectives:

  • Identify steps to develop and streamline a procedure for protecting youth on campus
  • Learn strategies for leveraging limited resources to incorporate a protection of minors’ policy
  • Understand how to generate campus buy-in for new campus-wide processes


Special Interest Sessions – Block C

3:15 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.


Collegiate Conference & Events Professional (CCEP) Candidates: Fast Track to Completion
Presented by: Christina Patarino, CCEP, Conference Coordinator, University of Colorado Boulder and Erica Spencer, CCEP, CMP, Director, Conference Services Bureau, Florida Institute of Technology

Designed specifically for those currently enrolled in the CCEP program, this is an opportunity to get motivated, whether you are just getting started or in the middle of the program. During this session we will discuss tips and tricks to completing the program in three years or less.  We will discuss how often and how to submit work completed with educational sessions, volunteer hours, and professional development.   You will receive suggestions on how to work with your mentor and most importantly how to tackle the CCEP workbook questions.   This is an interactive session, come with your many questions.

Learning Objectives:

  • Develop a plan to complete your CCEP in a timely fashion
  • Learn best practices to organize your time with submissions and workbook questions
  • Leave motivated to complete your CCEP certification


Building Relationships: Creating Buy-in From Campus Facilities Staff to Enhance Your Summer Operation

Presented by: Dylan Morris, Assistant Director, Conference Services and Sarah Heenan, Conference & Outreach Manager, North Carolina State University

Do you find yourself fighting against “improvements” and “special projects” that take place during the university’s off-season but directly impact your ability to serve summer guests? By becoming part of the facilities planning process, you can create buy-in among campus partners that not only minimizes headache but also leads to increased client satisfaction. In this session, we will discuss the importance of creating and maintaining strong relationships with physical facilities and housekeeping staff members. Participants will learn how creating a single system for communicating conference schedules, building projects, offline facilities, and housekeeping needs across campus can lead to streamlined operations. We will also explore ways in which you can make sure your summer operation is at the top of the list when campus partners make decisions about future projects that may directly impact guests on campus.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand the importance of creating strong relationships with campus facilities and housekeeping staffs
  • Explore ways to create centralized communication tools to share schedules between campus partners
  • Learn how to influence long-range facilities planning to benefit your conference operation


How to Generate a Million Dollars in Gross Revenue

Presented by: Katrina Kenton, Manager, Campus Events & Conference Services, Mount St. Joseph University

Small campus? No problem! Limited Resources? No problem! Learn how to define your resources and assets, identify your target market, and earn that repeat business. We will discuss the importance of excellent customer service, follow-up and follow through, and getting the buy-in from other departments on campus who will also support your clients and their events.

Learning Objectives:

  • Define, qualify, and quantify resources to identify the types of events and conferences that your facilities and personnel can support
  • Identify your target market to find and contact the clients who will use your facilities and services
  • Earn referrals and repeat business by providing excellent customer service, building trust, and forging relationships


Master Calendar and Priority Event Scheduling

Presented by: Alicia Ferguson, Event Coordinator, Temple University

Master calendar and priority scheduling allows schedulers to ensure that all university events will have the appropriate space needed for major events. Master calendar events are events that happen yearly and are generally around the same time each year. Priority events are those that may not have the same date but need a particular space on campus in order for the event to happen i.e. based on size, scope, tech needed, etc. We will cover steps used to make this process successful.  Attendees will learn how to create a time frame for requests to be submitted; how to review requests for conflicts and determining which event will get the space; how to explain why they were not given the space and determine the next best course of action to finalizing and sending all confirmations.

Learning Objectives:

  • Create a priority scheduling list that works for your department year after year
  • Utilize your event space for its full potential
  • Determine viable alternatives to keep your departmental clients happy 


“It’s Best If I Do It” – Learning how to Delegate

Presented by: Joanne Dennison, CMP, MS Ed., The Ordinary Success Project

Ever get in over your head because you tried to do it all? It was easier to “do it myself” than explain or show it to someone else? Run out of time and not delegate it because it is the last moment and it is embarrassing?  Very few of us can (honestly) say this has never happened to us. In the professional (and volunteer) world, no matter how much we plan, things change daily, and as it gets closer to deadlines, hourly. Becoming comfortable with delegation, and developing a strategy do so, can be the difference between things happening effectively, and total chaos.

Learning Objectives:

  • Discover that letting go and delegating is, at times, the “best” thing to do
  • Get your mind in a place where you can delegate
  • Decide what to delegate and to whom
  • Manage the project you are delegating


The Wheels Have Fallen Off: A Case Study of a Conference & Event Services Reorganization

Presented by: Nancy Martin, Director, Conference & Event Services, Bowie State University

This session will share how a Conference & Events team went from wheels falling off to a streamlined Conference & Event Services team whose responsibilities include: summer conferences, university scheduling, signature events and overall campus meeting & event management.  We will go over techniques on navigating University culture, reorganizing inherited staff roles, hiring and building a functional Conference & Event Services team from the perspective of a new director.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand reorganization and realignment of a barely producing unit
  • Learn strategies on how to sustain operations while requiring constant change
  • Be able to juggle multiple priorities from the University President, to Vice Presidents, to student staff, faculty and your own team while maintaining the integrity of your operation


Affinity Group Sessions

4:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

Attendees will have the chance to get together with their peers who fall into a similar group, whether it is the type of operation, department or affiliation.  Affinity groups will be announced in February. 


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Tuesday, March 31

8:00 a.m. – 8:45 a.m.

ACCED-I Business Meeting

Join us for the ACCED-I Business Meeting to learn what your Association has accomplished over the past year and what’s planned for the future. 


Strengths Based Leadership Institute – additional fee

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

$25 – includes StrengthsFinder Assessment Codes

Maximum attendance: 30

Presented by: Kelly Mason, CMP, Assistant Director of Events, University of Colorado Denver and Certified Strengths Educator and Leo Young, III, Conference & Meeting Services Manager, California State University, Fullerton and Certified Strengths Educator

Many campuses have started implementing Strengths Based Leadership in order to maximize employee and student engagement.  Whether you’ve started doing this work already or are simply wanting to get started, by using the foundations of the Clifton StrengthsFinder assessment, your operation can identify the natural talents of each individual and apply that information in supervision, coaching, and daily tasks for both professional and student staff to improve engagement in the workplace.  We hope you’ll join us to discuss and explore implementations of Strengths in the workplace.  Additionally, we will work as a group to incorporate the latest research on the connections between strengths and wellbeing in order to provide a holistic approach applicable to all levels of experience, both personally and professionally.  Let’s take Strengths to the next level to make the most of everyone’s talents.

Learning Objectives:

  • Articulate the basic theory of Strengths and understand the holistic approach of observing the frequency of the four domains in your operation
  • Enhance your own development by applying the foundational tenets of Strengths in both your professional and personal lives
  • Employ strategies for effectively giving and receiving Strengths-based feedback in the workplace to maximize employee engagement
  • Recognize opportunities for applying Strengths to individual job descriptions and connecting Strengths with Wellbeing


Special Interest Sessions – Block D

9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.


How to be Successful with a Small Office

Presented by: Carye Vogt, Manager, Conferences and Hospitality Services, California State University, Northridge

Often small offices of less than three people feel overwhelmed and under-served because of a lack of collaboration with other offices on campus. This session will empower small offices to embrace their individual touches to their clients and help them be successful with low financial investment but high personality investment. This session builds on the session discussion from the ACCED-I 39th Annual Conference. We will continue to generate ideas for success and become true superheroes.  We will create a plan for success for you and your office, define what makes you the representative for your university, create a statement or mantra that you can say to yourself that allows you to make mistakes, learn from them, and move to the next task, and develop a list of what you don't know or do not think you are the expert. Then we will set up a plan to learn how to be the expert in one more thing about the university, your office, your staff or your system.

Learning Objectives:

  • Get the client to love you and your people, and loving the school will follow
  • Learn how to set reasonable client expectations
  • Understand that you are human, and mistakes will happen, you are pulled in multiple directions


Large Scale Construction Projects: How to Navigate Projects that have a Direct Impact on Your Summer Conference Operation- Case Study

Presented by: Sarah Heenan, Conference & Outreach Manager and Dylan Morris, Assistant Director, Conference Services, North Carolina State University

Campus construction projects can impact numerous stakeholders, and some of these impacts may be overlooked or unknown until construction begins.  At a large public university, we experienced a major city water-line replacement project that limited access to over 2,300 beds for the duration of our summer season.  This highly impactful campus construction project was shared with us in the latter part of our planning season, creating new challenges for us to navigate. In this presentation, we’ll discuss how we navigated this process over the course of our season; how we obtained necessary information from all parties involved; how we decided on a plan for communication with contracted clients and campus partners; and finally, how we determined the best possible way to provide clients the best experience possible,  . You’ll learn how we obtained the necessary information from all parties involved; decided on an action plan for communication with already contracted clients and campus partners, and finally, how we determined the best action plan on the ground to allow clients the best experience possible, including managing some major accessibility hurdles. Building off our experiences, we will share our insights and some tools to use when faced with major construction projects in the future.

Learning Objectives:

  • Communicate effectively with numerous constituents and campus partners about construction and its impacts
  • Learn how to develop an action plan based on the project timeline and its direct impact on conference operations
  • Hit the ground running (not through the 20ft canyon) on making the experience the best it possibly can be


Telling Your Story - How to Tell Your Leadership on Your Campus What You Do and Why it's Important

Presented by: Jason McClellan, Senior Director, Auxiliary Services, Tufts University

What does event management and conference services do? What's an auxiliary services department for? If you've encountered these questions on your campus or in your professional career, this session is for you. As senior managers on our respective campuses, we’re often included in high level planning meetings and usually consulted for high-level, signature events. But who’s communicating the greater importance of what your teams are accomplishing? This interactive session will focus on telling your story on campus to help you flush out the key topics to address in an annual reporting model as well as different methods of presenting data to Senior Administration and other decision makers at your institution.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand why telling your story is important
  • Develop a framework for annual reporting on your campus
  • Understand basics of data mining, what the data tells you, and what information might be important for your campus colleagues to know


Lights, Camera, Action...Key Strategies & Best Practices to Bringing Major Political and Live Television Events to Life on Your Campus

Presented by: Rob Foreman, Director of Conference & Event Services, Saint Anselm College

Saint Anselm College is home to the New Hampshire Institute of Politics and our campus has hosted every US President and candidate for office over the last 50+ years. During the 2020 Primary season, we successfully hosted two live CNN television Presidential Town Hall events in 2019, and several live television events/shows including a Democratic Debate during the NH Primary Season. This program will highlight our path to hosting the successful events and offer strategies you could implement on your campus.

Learning Objectives:

  • Discover strategies to deal with TV Networks and Political Candidates and their staffs
  • Understand and develop a comprehensive plan to handle campus partners, budgeting, and contract negotiations
  • Realize potential roadblocks and the lasting impact large events have on your campus


Please ---ANYTHING but the Budget! How to Build a Budget That You Can Actually Explain

Presented by: Joanne Dennison, CMP, MS Ed., The Ordinary Success Project

Zero Based or Incremental? Cash or Accrual? Please don’t ask me!

People are scared of numbers and other people’s money – so what happens when we get multi-thousand or multi-million-dollar projects and departments dropped into our laps?  We may be able to stay in budget, but what happens when we have to build one---and explain it? Come learn the basics from a Liberal Arts Major (after all most of us did a winding road to this industry) who explains it in meeting planning terms.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how to build a budget on something other than guess work
  • Know some of the most common accounting terms used in the real world
  • Feel a lot more confident the next time you must build, explain, look at, or talk about a budget! (even in your personal life)


Topic Expert Sessions

10:15 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.

Do you have specific questions on a new program you are developing at your institution?  Or do you want to brainstorm ideas and practices for a current program?  Join a topic expert in one of the following topics and get your questions answered. 

  • Hosting a National Political Event: Matthew D’Oyly, Otterbein University
  • Wellness Wednesdays and Mental Health: Michele Payne, University of Arkansas
  • Student Scheduling Tips: Krystal Grace, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
  • From Anarchy to High Performing – Changes in Student Staff Hiring and Supervision: Kim Araya, and Johni Amos, American University


Special Interest Sessions – Block E

11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Including Inclusion: The Value of Social Justice Trainings for Student Staff Teams

Presented by: Hilary Brenneman, Conference Manager, University of Colorado Boulder

In this session, we will start by breaking down all the definitions we know and use regarding social justice: what is diversity? Inclusion? Equity? From there, we will discuss how these topics are relevant to the work we do in Conferences and Events, especially how training around these topics can benefit our student teams in relation to office dynamics, guest interactions, and personal and professional development. Finally, we will discuss some actual training sessions and activities to implement with our teams!

Learning Objectives:

  • Recognize the terms and definitions that play into social justice
  • Understand the value of social justice training for student staff teams within conferences and events
  • Learn activities that can be implemented within student staff training


Let’s Go Green! Reasonable Goal Setting for Sustainability

Presented by: Christina Patarino, CCEP, Conference Coordinator, CU Conference Services, University of Colorado Boulder; Laurie McKain, Director of Auxiliary Services, Marietta College; and Nathan Ruger, Sales Manager, Conference Services, New Mexico State University

You will walk away feeling confident in progressing your green program no matter what stage your institution is at... either just starting, continuing to make strides, or soaring into the latest innovative trends. “Let’s Go Green!” session will provide a pep rally level of enthusiasm leaving you pumped full of new ideas and approaches toward sustainability and provide clear 2020 vision for what the next generation of resource conservation will look like.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how to instill green thought to become a campus wide culture
  • Understand what your service partners and vendors can do for you!
  • Ensure vendors are complying with your green program and ask the right questions of your vendors, especially your national corporate partners
  • Understand how the benefits of sustainable practices can benefit your clients and your institution’s overall mission


Best Practices for Summer Camps and Conferences

Presented by: Kim Araya, Director, American University

This session will address the top ten best practices based on our professional experiences at a large public institution in an urban area and a medium private institution located in a large metropolitan area. We will give you tips that can help you host a successful conference, event and/or summer camp on your university or college. We will discuss a step-by-step process starting from the beginning of “knowing your mission and vision” and taking you through the ten steps and concluding with “what to do now that the client has departed.” This is a program for every conference planner that is relatively new to the profession.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn the basics about your campus mission, vision, and values
  • Discover the who, what, and when in dealing with request for proposal (RFP) and client site visits
  • Understand the contract, timeline, on-campus logistics and final billing


How to Start or Grow your Intern Housing Program

Presented by: Elijah Ajayi, Associate Director, Conference Services and Amber Mann, Coordinator, Conference Services, Emory University

This session will be designed to help each campus determine whether an intern program will be successful on their campus. Current trends will be reviewed, such as working with residence life on emotional support animals, marketing, etc. that should be considered.  We will also share and solicit ideas on how to grow their program.

Learning Objectives:

  • Determine if an intern housing program is a good fit for your campus
  • Learn how to recruit interns to live on your campus
  • Discover how to expand your intern housing program


Networking Luncheon

12:15 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Take a break from the education and connect with your colleagues. We will have topic tables available to choose from as well as open networking tables.

Special Interest Sessions – Block F

1:45 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.


Preparing your Campus for a Dignitary or Notable Speaker Event

Presented by: Brittani Menina, CMP, Events Manager, Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies

Hosting a dignitary or notable figure on your campus requires an additional level of detailed planning and management when it comes to items such as logistics, risk assessments, security and media attention. The process can be both exciting and challenging, but preparation is key! This session offers an overview on how these speakers will impact your standard event process. We will review how to collaborate with various stakeholders, adjust to a speaker’s specifications and prepare for potential requirements by security teams.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how to develop a comprehensive event plan and the elements needed for your stakeholders
  • Identify the additional steps on how to prepare for a walk through with security and advance teams
  • Learn communication strategies to prepare and empower your team during pre-con meetings


Discover your Intrinsic Leadership Motivation at Work

Presented by: Kim Araya, Director, American University

What motivates you and drives your leadership style at work may be quite different from your peers/colleagues that you supervise and collaborate with. We will discuss the four (4) key elements of Intrinsic Motivation and self-management. You will discover what motivates you as a person and explore what this means for you as a colleague and a supervisor.

Learning Objectives:

  • Review the history of Intrinsic Motivation and see how the requirements of work have changed; with an understanding that self-management requires a deeper level of commitment than the old compliance work era
  • Review the four key rewards of self-management: A sense of meaningfulness, a sense of choice, a sense of competence, and a sense or progress
  • Understand your self-management as a supervisor, and acknowledge all four Intrinsic Motivation values of your staff in order to have a successful team


Creating an Electronic Customer Support System

Presented by: Nathan Lubich, Assistant Director of Operations, Yale University

Picture this: You email your IT department with request for help. You receive a confirmation email summarizing your request and providing you with a way to track the progress being made. When the issue is resolved, you get an email letting you know. This is a level of communication and customer service we’ve come to expect when working with various companies or departments. So why don’t we offer something similar to our clients? This presentation is going to look at customer support ticketing systems and dive into how you can use a combination of systems and workflows to provide better customer service and to receive better data on your operation. Particular attention will be paid to options that cover a range of price-points and technological support including strategies for applying the general concept of a support ticketing system if you don’t have the budget for a dedicated software.

Learning Objectives:

  • Recognize ways in which a customer support ticketing system can benefit your operation
  • Identify challenges to creating and using a customer support ticketing system
  • Be able to select a customer support ticketing system based on need and resources available


From Propose to Close - Presenting Business Winning Summer Conference Proposals

Presented by: Jill Larson, Sales Manager, Northern Arizona University

You have a potential client interested in coming to your university for a summer conference. You've had a great conversation, you understand their needs, you have the venues and services they require along with availability. How do you convince them you are the best venue for their program? From your first conversation to closing the sale, come learn some tips and tricks to presenting business winning conference proposals and best sales practices that will leaving a lasting impression and set you apart from the rest.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand the sales process in securing new business
  • Learn how to write a comprehensive and professional conference proposal
  • Gain tools on how to convert a lead into a reservation


ACCED-I Volunteer Opportunities: Learn How YOU Can Get Involved

Presented by: Devin Shelby, Director of Membership, ACCED-I and Laura Bachman, Assistant Director, Conference Services, Lehigh University

Join us to learn more about the various short- and long-term volunteer and leadership opportunities ACCED-I offers.  These opportunities can span volunteering at the Annual Conference, serving on committees and action teams, becoming a regional director or board member.  We will focus on how volunteering with ACCED-I will provide you with professional growth and networking opportunities while contributing to your industry.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how ACCED-I volunteer opportunities can contribute to your professional growth in the collegiate event industry
  • Gain an understanding of each of the different volunteer roles ACCED-I has to offer
  • Determine which volunteer opportunity is right for you


Presidential Presentation and ACCED-I 41st Annual Conference Preview: Albuquerque, NM

4:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.    

Immediately following the closing keynote, ACCED-I Board of Directors President Mary Kay Baker, CCEP, will address accomplishments during her 2019-2020 presidency. Then we will look to the future and hear the vision and understand our Association's goals presented by our 2020-2021 Board of Directors President, Cal Seelye.

Then, get a preview of Albuquerque, NM, location of the ACCED-I 41st Annual Conference. Region 1 will give us a taste of what to expect in 2021. 

Closing Dinner at Rhode Island Convention Center

6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

We will wrap up our 40th celebration by going back to the 80’s!  Pack your bomber or denim jacket, grab your hair crimper, and get ready for a blast from the past.  Join your ACCED-I colleagues one last time for a fun farewell dinner.  There will be buffets of food available, cash bars, a DJ, and lots of 80’s fun. 


Wednesday, April 1

Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design College Tour

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

$45.00 member/$60 nonmember

Minimum participants: 15

Maximum participants: 35

Join your peers for a comprehensive tour of nearby Brown University and Rhode Island School of Design. 


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