Our conference structure allows participants to create a customized conference experience by providing three sessions of breakout presentations.
There will also be three keynote presentations and roundtable discussions. Our roundtables this year focus on all aspects of adult student marketing. Whether you’re and adviser or director who wants to learn how others communicate to a centralized marketing department, or if you are a marketing professional yourself, talk with other higher education professionals in organized conversations at our information roundtable discussions!
Breakout Session I
A. Enabling Retention and Completion
William A. Draves, president, LERN
There are 11 strategies your institution and faculty can employ to dramatically increase retention and completion of adult learners. Retention and completion don’t need to be exhausting, and they don’t need to take up additional faculty or staff time. Boosting completion rates takes a 21st century approach—learn the policies and procedures that will enhance student learning and completion at your institution.
B. Pathways to Completion: How Institutions Are Maximizing Credit for Prior Learning for Adult Students
Laura Winters, senior project director, Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL); Patricia Brewer, Midwest regional liaison, American Council on Education (ACE)
Learning options are proliferating daily, and individuals of all ages are increasingly likely to arrive at college with significant college-level learning. The development of an aligned career and education pathway that recognizes and incorporates this learning is critical to their success. This session will explore ways colleges are finding to recognize this extra-institutional learning.
C. Nontraditional Partnerships to Serve Nontraditional Students
Demaree Michelau, director of policy analysis, Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education; Maria Coons, senior executive to the President, Harper College; and Sarah Beasley, director, Statewide Academic Initiatives, West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission
Recruiting and retaining adult students takes more than just an active and dedicated institution. Partnerships with the private sector, government agencies, the workforce sector, and non-profit organizations are key to serving this population. Learn how using these partnerships can increase recruitment and retention rates of adult learners.
D. Student Success Inventory: Tailor-Made Recruitment and Retention
Steve VandenAvond, associate provost for Outreach and Adult Access; Jeff Grebinoski, outreach specialist for Adult Degree Programs; and Eric Craver, director for External Relations, Outreach and Adult Access, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay
The Student Success Inventory (SSI) is a locally-normed, predictive instrument designed to assess adult student readiness for college-level online learning. In addition to helping adult students transition to college, when combined with a behavior-based early alert system, the SSI will serve as a powerful tool for retaining adult learners.
E. Sticker Shock: Advising Online and Transfer Students
Travis Bulluck, assistant director, College of Business Advising Center, East Carolina University
This session will explain the practices used by online and transfer advisors in the College of Business at East Carolina University. Bulluck will suggest how to explain foundations curriculum, degree requirements, being dual-enrolled, as well as sticker shock when looking at transferred courses and the courses remaining for degree completion.
Breakout Session II
F.What Happened to the Card Catalog?: Supporting Online Adult Students with Library Resources
Erin Mischak, distance education librarian, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Online library services can be intimidating to adult learners. Distance education students are especially prone to anxiety, since they must navigate additional technological barriers to access library resources from off-campus. In this session, learn how UW Oshkosh’s Polk Library fights library anxiety with customized orientations, website enhancements and innovative tutorials.
G. Special Needs and the Adult Learner
Bruce Rathe, special needs support instructor, Fox Valley Technical College; and Rob Tracy, academic adviser, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay
It is often easy to identify easily recognizable disabilities, but there are many students who possess hidden disabilities. This session will identify some of the hidden conditions that affect adult learners and the stigma and generational attitudes that result. Rathe and Tracy will share best practices and strategies for student success in a learning environment. An interactive activity will demonstrate the significant challenges hidden disabilities present in an educational setting.
H. Designing a Personal Learning System that Lasts for a Lifetime: Strength-Based Learning Strategies and New Tools for Learners
Amy Scatliff, educational specialist, Scatliff Educational Consulting
Student needs and interests evolve at a rapid pace, and colleges do not always have the resources to accommodate these changes. This session will discuss one way to stay reactive to changing needs—Personal Learning Systems. Learn how identifying and reflecting upon your strengths is a main element in designing your own system for learning, and use these lessons work more effectively with students in designing their own learning plan.
I. One to Grow On: Advising Adult Students
Karie Coffman, academic adviser, Cleveland State University
The presentation uses a series of vignettes to describe adult student persistence. Advise students by making a sequence of connections from prior experience to campus resources and future career goals. A synthesis of these interactions results in best practices for advising adult students.
J. Extending Access to Adult Learners through Online Certificate Programs
Ashley Pepsin, admissions counselor/communications specialist; and Kayla Sines, admissions counselor/communications specialist, Penn State World Campus
Pepsin and Sines will explain how Penn State World Campus is expanding its reach, using the benefits and challenges of online certificates for adult learners. From application to matriculation, they will present an overview of the process at Penn State World Campus. They will focus on how the student experience has evolved, the need that these programs fulfill, and best practices for management.
Breakout Session III
K. What I Want My College to Know About My Experience
Panel of adult students
This panel will be comprised of successful adult students attending a variety of public and private 2-year and 4-year institutions at both the undergraduate and graduate level. They will discuss the issues and barriers they have encountered and identify strategies they are using to reach their educational goals.
L. Fourteen Mistakes That Women Make That Can Derail Their Career
Karen Heikel, assistant vice chancellor, Division of Lifelong Learning and Community Engagement, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
This workshop will explore ways that women can unintentionally sabotage their career progress. In addition to identifying qualities and behaviors that can actually work against you in the workplace, the presenter will provide ways to change your approach without becoming “one of the boys.”
M. Transitions: College and Career Prep
Betsy Esposito, academic support resource coordinator, Continuing Education, Penn State University
Beginning summer 2011, Penn State Continuing Education at University Park offers Transitions: College and Career Prep to area adults interested in beginning or returning to postsecondary education. Attend this session to learn about the curriculum, students, successes, and impact on admission and retention.
N. "Suite" Success: Resources for Student Achievement
Janet Brugger, director, Office of Academic Resources, University of the Rockies
“Suite” Success is a trio of resources that University of the Rockies has developed for its student population, both online and on campus. This suite of resources is comprised of the Rockies Research Center, Rockies Writing Center—The Writers Peak—and SMARTLab.
O. Changing through Collaborations
Andy Meyer, assistant vice president for Academic Affairs, Dalton State College
Dalton State College became a member of Georgia’s 13 Adult Learning Consortium in 2010. Membership requires institutions to administer CAEL’s ALFI toolkit and train faculty in prior learning assessment. This session will share the results of the toolkit and discuss how collaboration in the consortium has helped DSC change practices and implement a PLA program.
Breakout Session IV
P. Understanding the World of LGBTQ Nontraditional Students
Liz Cannon, director, LGBTQ Resource Center; and Thomas Wolf, University Books & More, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
This workshop will combine basic LGBTQ Ally training with an introduction to the different challenges faced by LGBTQ nontraditional students. Participants will learn about language, societal messages about LGBTQ identity, and what it means to be an ally. Cannon, director of the LGBTQ Resource Center at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, and Wolf, former assistant director of the Resource Center, have extensive experience in conducting SAFE zone trainings. Additionally, Wolf, will also share his experience as a nontraditional student at UW Oshkosh.
Q. Retention-Focused Programs for Student Veterans
Shawn Monroe, director, Veteran's Resource Center, University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
UW Oshkosh was recently ranked 7th in the nation in a list of military friendly colleges. This presentation will focus on retention initiatives that have garnered national attention and increased retention rates of student veterans. Monroe will discuss the unique needs of student veterans and how your campus can be proactive to those needs.
R. Recruitment and Retention Revisited
Amy Griswold, outreach program manager, University of Wisconsin-Platteville
The UW-Platteville Distance Learning Center has experienced growth within the recruitment and advising teams. Due to this growth and in preparation for future growth, the department restructured to become more student centered. From the assignment of recruiters to the assignment of advisors and everything else in between, UW-Platteville has improved its one-stop-shop. This presentation will include the restructure approach, services offered and some pitfalls they encountered along the way.
S. Everything You Wanted to Know about the University of Wisconsin Flexible Option but Were Afraid to Ask!
Aaron Brower, interim provost and vice chancellor and special assistant to the president for Educational Strategies, University of Wisconsin-Extension; and Rebecca Karoff, senior special assistant to the senior vice president of academic and student affairs, University of Wisconsin System
The UW Flexible Option program is a portfolio of degrees, certificates and courses drawn primarily from the UW System’s existing program array. These programs will be offered through formats that are self-paced, competency-based and built on best-practice educational principles and learning science, including learning-outcomes assessment and instructional design principles. Students will be able to receive skill and knowledge from anywhere—from traditional place-based courses, to online material, to work and practical experiences, to structured internships and service projects. This session is designed to explain some of the program’s complexities and most distinctive features and provide higher education professionals working with adult and non-traditional students information they can use to guide their students towards fulfilling their educational goals.
T. Madison Area Technical College's Orientation to Online and Accelerated Learning
Shawna Carter, associate dean; and Carly Brady, project leader, School of Online and Accelerated Learning, Madison Area Technical College
The School of Online and Accelerated Learning created an orientation to online and accelerated course formats and is delivered through Blackboard. This session will discuss the orientation, which includes student testimonials, resources, and a required self-assessment to assist students with their decision to register for an alternative format course for the first time.