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Attending NACAC for Newbies

I was fortunate enough to attend my first NACAC conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. It was easily one of the best professional development opportunities I have had. As a new attendee, I wanted to provide others, who may potentially have an opportunity to attend NACAC in the future, with some tips to make the most of your experience.

Below are the Sauvik’s 5 Keys to NACAC Conference Success:

1. Find Sessions Done By Industry Leaders

One of my favorite sessions was “Finding Home: Diving into Homelessness and Higher Education,” led by Ja’Niah Downing and Khala Granville. They explored how their respective institutions help unaccompanied youth through the admissions process and other aspects of campus life.

With over 100 different sessions offered, there is something for everyone. I found myself stuck trying to decide what to attend. Often it came down to who was presenting and how the topic applies to my job or things I hope to work with.

2. Find Old Colleagues

There were roughly 4,000 attendees at NACAC. One of my favorite things was to catch up with friends I haven’t seen in years. The beauty of admissions is that it is such a connected world. Even though it had been a while since seeing some, it felt like conversations picked up right where they left off!

3. Expand Your Network

This goes along with finding old colleagues. This is also an awesome time to build your network with professionals from all around the country. I was lucky to attend Admissions Middle Management Institute which was a pre-conference for middle managers. After that
pre-conference it felt like I gained a bunch of new contacts. I was also fortunate to start my service on the Professional Development Committee for NACAC.

4. Attend Your State Meeting

I need my Iowans. It was fun to see our fellow Iowa ACAC Members attending NACAC in one spot. We covered some Iowa ACAC business, but it was mainly a time to catch up with one another

5. Take Time To Enjoy The Area

On our last night in Salt Lake we decided to do a little exploring. We visited the University of Utah and then drove out to Park City for dinner.

Even if you don’t find yourself at a NACAC conference I think you can still use these tips at any conference you attend!
 This was a great way to bond together as an admissions team.


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