Many thanks to our keynote speaker, Dr. Robert Kelly, Vice President for Student Development and clinical professor of higher education at Loyola University Chicago, for a great opening to a successful conference! Dr. Kelly provides leadership for the advocacy, development and coordination of co-curricular and spiritual initiatives, services and activities to promote the academic, personal and professional development of all students. His research focuses on administrative ethical decision-making in higher education and the ways in which college students’ experiences with diversity prepare them for active citizenship and leadership. Not only did Dr. Kelly enlighten us he also provided many opportunities for laughter with well timed music clips from the past and present.
The first-timer’s luncheon was also a success, with more than 120 first time conference attendees. The goal of the luncheon was to offer attendees the opportunity to maximize the conference experience as well as the overall association experience. Hopefully each of the first timers learned new things, networked with colleagues and enjoyed all that IACAC has to offer. The speaker for the first-timer’s luncheon, Ken Anselment from Lawrence University, gave great advice to the new admission professionals. Each of the tables also offered table hosts to provide that one on one mentoring opportunity to the first timers.
The Mentorship Committee also facilitated a networking dinner for first timers as well as those that did not have dinner plans at RAM. There was a great turnout for this event from mentors, mentees, and first timers.
Early out of the gate on Thursday morning were the Alumni at their breakfast. A group of retirees gathered at the hotel for breakfast and to share stories and reminisce.
On Thursday morning, members gathered to conduct official business of the association. Elections were held for the executive board. All of the proposed by-law changes were approved, as was the 2011-12 budget.
This was another successful year for Project Reach! More than $1,500 dollars was raised for a school in need, and this year’s recipient was especially relevant and timely.
The school, Cairo Junior/Senior High School in the Cairo Unified School District, was nominated and selected as this years recipient. The committee identified the school as one that would be able to put these supplied to great use. This decision could not have been better timed as the school and community has been greatly affected by the tornados and flooding. Kathryn Kleeman, Assistant Director of Admission at the University of Illinois, Springfield, nominated Cairo Junior/Senior HS for this year’s Project Reach award. IACAC was thrilled to have Zena Madison the Assistant Principal at the school (pictured below), join the membership at Conference to accept the Project Reach donations that were so generously delivered.
For the third year, the Mentorship Committee gave an award to the mentor/mentee match of the year at their reception. This year’s winners were Bill Morrison from Highland Park High School (pictured far right with Mentorship Committee Co-Chair, Anne Kremer) and Katie Bluhm from Marian Catholic High School. Congratulations!
The mentorship committee created a new initiative called the Sister Schools Project, new to this year’s conference. Items such as college guide books and other career counseling tools were collected at the conference to distribute to high schools in need of these items. We still have some of these items available. High schools that could benefit from these items please contact Anne Kremer or Nate Bargar.
This year, IACAC members were able to enjoy a variety of entertainment opportunities-from trivia to dancing and taking silly photos in the photobooth, the Entertainment committee gave everyone a chance to relax and spend time with colleagues. They even performed a flash mob routine after dinner Thursday night! Check it out and pictures from the day and watch the video of the flash mob.
For the first time this year, evaluations were completely online! Many thanks go to Elmhurst College, who generously donated this opportunity. All members who attended sessions should have received emails with the link to evaluate those sessions-please submit, as the more evaluations you complete, the more opportunities you have to win a variety of prizes!
Raffle and Wall of Fame
Finally, the raffle committee would like to thank all the generous IACAC members who donated to Project Reach, purchased medals, purchased 50-5o raffle tickets or participated in the silent auction. The total amount raised was over $5,000!
Friday’s Finish Line
The final day of the conference began with a Town Hall meeting that was facilitated by the Ad-Hoc Board Structure Committee. Please see the article in this newsletter for more information about the board restructure.
The 2011 conference concluded with endnote speaker Allison Rosati, a co-anchor of NBC5 News’ award-winning news team at 5, 6, and 10pm. Rosati is committed to community service and giving back whenever possible. She shared stories of giving back and encouraged each of us to do the same.
The conference wrapped up with brunch and closing remarks, including the passing of the gavel from Carin Smith (Lawrence University) to Laura Docherty (Fenwick High School).