Scenes from Seattle

It was a privilege to attend the NACAC conference in Seattle in late September. The sun was shining, the hills were steep, and it was a  beautiful thing to attend a conference again. I had the best time doing an Instagram takeover, posting about fabulous sessions, keynotes, and Seattle spots. If you don’t already, give Iowa ACAC a follow!

My favorite part was, of course…the people. Oh, the people!

Connecting with my President’s Class was a highlight. We’re self-titled “FLEX” because we’re FLEXible and still FLEXing our leadership muscles through the pandemic! Inspired and humbled, I still have work to do on behalf of Iowa ACAC.

I joined your assembly delegates, Chris Wood (Cedar Falls HS) and Lauren Garcia (Coe College), for the delegates meeting to discuss new ways for our delegates to contribute to Iowa ACAC and NACAC. We spent time in caucus (just a fancy word for a brainstorming session, right?) and then shared our ideas with all 23 affiliates. This will be a work in progress, folks. We have an incredible opportunity to re-imagine the role of delegates with guidance from a designated ad-hoc committee in the coming months.

My marvelous co-host for our Iowa ACAC reception, Tom Paulsen (University of Iowa), organized a gathering for all of us Iowans at Quinn’s Pub in the Capitol Hill neighborhood. It gave us a chance to talk shop, reconnect and socialize.

I befriended Conner Ellinghuysen (Buena Vista University), who attended one of the pre-conferences offered by NACAC. Conner told me, “Attending the CHIEF pre-conference was a great opportunity that showed me that we are not alone. So many of our colleagues across the desk are struggling with the same issues, but what was so inspiring is that all of us are striving to improve the college experience and make college accessible now more than ever.”

Conner and I attended a session titled, “From Farm to Table: Supporting Rural Students from All Sides of the Desk.” Conner’s grateful other institutions are paying attention. He says, “In Iowa so many of our rural students often feel like they are left out of the national conversation or that they cannot be successful in college, but colleges across the country are rising to the challenge to better support rural education!”

Can I just say the name Soledad O’Brien?! She was an incredible keynote interview, inspiring broadcaster, storyteller and champion of diversity.  

What is a conference without a grand finale? The conference social was held at the Seattle Art Museum featuring a special exhibition by Claude Monet. Breathtaking.

And now that I’m home, I’m catching my breath. You should do the same during this busy season. NACAC unveiled a new mission and vision during the conference; I hope it resonates with you.

Empowering college admission counseling professionals through education, advocacy, and community.

The transformative power of postsecondary education is accessible to all.

-Jaclyn Tungesvik (Iowa State University)
Iowa ACAC President

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