GWI 2022 Virtual Sessions
NACAC’s Guiding the Way to Inclusion (GWI) conference is aimed at secondary, postsecondary, and CBO college admission professionals committed to championing the needs of diverse students within the college admission process.
Guiding the Way to Inclusion 2022 sold out due to overwhelming demand. To meet this demand, NACAC offered a limited virtual experience for those who were unable to attend. Purchase virtual access to these sessions now!
- $100 for NACAC members
- $200 for non-members
- $50 for Title I schools
Is Your Open House Closed-Minded to Neurodiverse Students?
(1 credit hour)
At most admission events, one can expect to find a pep rally atmosphere with lights, cameras, and action. Although intended to generate enthusiasm and cultivate excitement, sometimes these events can harm and exclude neurodivergent students. Learn strategies to inclusively de-center neurotypicality and explore the ways in which enrollment events such as campus visits, open houses, and orientation programs have historically excluded students who identify as neurodiverse as well as those with learning disabilities. By boldly abandoning one-size-fits-all events, we courageously make space for folks to conclude: “My size can fit here.”
- Dr. Kristin Austin, Advisory Board, Philadelphia College Prep Roundtable
- Attendees will be able to articulate a working definition and description of neurodiversity.
- Attendees will be able to describe at least 2 practices within their enrollment events that can cause harm to neurodiverse students.
- Attendees will be able to identify at least 3 easily implemented strategies that de-center neurotypicality in enrollment events.
Recruiting students is an important aspect of the higher education world and being able to market to multiple student groups is always helpful. However, successfully reaching LGBTQ+ students requires foresight and sensitivity. Concerns about student safety, as well as concerns about outing or misgendering students, are all important factors that need to be carefully considered. Learn best practices for working with this minority group in a safe manner that allows them to feel wanted, welcome, and prepared for success.
- Ethan Wright, Admission Counselor, Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis
- Learning to talk with students that may not be out and how to navigate those conversations
- Presenting/organizing resources that may help in the decision making process
- Create a larger diversity and inclusive spaces for students to feel safe
Solidarity in the Dumpster Fire
(1 credit hour)
In a world in crisis, who takes care of the caregiver? BIPOC college access and success professionals are questioning their agency to make change in this field while still maintaining their own well-being. Often removed from conversations and left to feel overextended and undervalued, how do we prioritize ourselves so that we can continue to do the critical work? Explore ways to sustain our well-being through boundaries, support systems, and professional advancement.
- Yvonne Espinoza, College Counselor, Yvonne Espinoza College Counseling Services
- Cherise D. Ogle, Assoc. Dean of College Counseling, The Weber School
- Participants will acknowledge the struggle between prioritizing our well-being and meeting the expectations of our profession.
- Participants will engage in a real talk on ways to support and sustain themselves, especially when in crisis mode.
- Participants will leave with strategies to feel more empowered to continue to create change while putting themselves first.
Speaking Up for Our Students: Advocating in the College Admission Process
Please note: this session was canceled. Slides will be available for viewing in Litmos.
(1 credit hour)
Session Description: In the last few years, it seems like students need our advocacy more and more. As admission methods start to push the boundaries of best practice, we know that those students who are typically found at the margins—students of color, LGBTQ+ students, first-generation students, and low-income students—are disproportionately impacted and likely lack the resources to advocate for themselves. Discuss both the “why” and the “how to.” Come ready to learn and to share!
- Stacey Cunitz, Director of College Counseling, The Crefeld School
- Alicia Oglesby, High school counselor, Lower Moreland High School
- Understand why advocacy is important now that the CEPP has changed to the Guide to Ethical Practice
- Have tools to help students advocate for themselves
- Gain confidence in direct advocacy
What we’d want our post secondary partners to know about First gen Students of color
Four advisers who work for secondary institutions that teach and support mostly first-generation students of color in Philadelphia share their stories. With over 35 years of experience collectively, they have accumulated qualitative information on what colleges—both HBCUs and PWIs, two-year and four-year—need to know beyond student applications to make sure first-gen students and students of color can persist and graduate.
- Lance Dronkers, Director of College Partnerships, Mastery Charter Schools
- Chris Horne, Director of College Counseling and Alumni Support, Girard College
- Shannon Miranda, Director of College Counseling, KIPP Philadelphia Public Schools
- How partnerships, official MOUs or unofficial, can continue to assist and support postsecondary institutions ensure first gen students and students of color persist
- Beyond the sobering statistics, what tips can a college student support services office use to engage with first gen students and be seen as genuine and sincere supports
- How to academically support first gen students coming from under-resourced schools, especially intended STEM majors
Building More Inclusive Communities Through An AAPI Lens
(1 credit hour)
The Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) community is not well understood in the college admission environment. AAPI students are often perceived as a monolithic group, but this community is rich with layers of diversity, including ethnic and socioeconomic factors that greatly impact the experiences of students. Learn about the makeup, history, and diversity within this community as you equip yourself with the tools to advocate for and best serve students during the college search process.
- Steve Frappier, Director of College Counseling, The Westminster Schools
- Brenda Gerhardt, Assistant Clinical Professor, University of Dayton and Gerhardt Educational Endeavors
- Sneha Kohirkar, College Counselor, Bellarmine College Preparatory
- Chris Loo, Co-Director of College Counseling, The Stony Brook School
- Participants will have a greater understanding of the diversity of the monolithic term AAPI
- Participants will become more familiar with the different histories within the broader AAPI communities and how that impacts the present-day experience of each subgroup.
- Participants will have tools that can help them avoid common assumptions and microaggressions often made about AAPI students.
How Women of Color Navigate Leadership Mazes: Lessons Learned
(1 credit hour)
In her Harvard Business Review article, How to Disrupt a System That was Built to Hold You Back, professor Lan Nguyen Chaplin writes, “In almost every industry, women of color receive less support, and experience double standards, microaggressions, and unconscious bias.” Hear from seasoned professionals who have been in the trauma trenches and who will share strategies on how to navigate PWI spaces, especially when you are the only BIPOC in the room. Take away tips and insights on how to move your workplace toward being a more inclusive and equitable place for all.
- Nikki Kahealani Chun, Vice Provost for Enrollment Management, University of Hawai’i at Manoa
- Brandy Fransen, Senior Associate Director of International Admission, Rollins College
- Joan Liu, Founder, Second Chance
- Myronee Simpson, Director of College Counseling, Shorecrest Preparatory School
- Leaders from majority backgrounds will leave with a higher level of awareness of the specific challenges that female colleagues of color face in the workplace.
- Women of color will leave with insights on how to broach difficult conversations, and navigate spaces that were not built for them.
- Leaders of color will leave with tips on how to move their workplace forward towards being a more inclusive, representative, and equitable place for all of us.
Students with Disabilities: Barriers to the Admission Process
(1 credit hour)
Students with disabilities may encounter a range of unexpected barriers as they plan for postsecondary education. The needs of students with mobility/sensory (vision, hearing) impairments, mental/chronic health conditions, learning disabilities, and neurodiversity all may impact a student’s ability to access and engage in the admission process. Explore how you can create an inclusive environment by including disability as an aspect of diversity in your college advising practices, your admission processes, and on campus.
- Leslie Thatcher, Director, College Success, Perkins School for the Blind
- Annie Tulkin, MS, Founder/Director, Accessible College, LLC
- Participants will gain an understanding of the current data related to disability and college.
- Participants will gain an understanding of the differences between high school and college accommodations for students with disabilities.
- Participants will be able to evaluate the accessibility of their college advising and admission programming.
Beyond the Headlines: Digging Deeper with College Access and Affordability
(1 credit hour)
The college admission and financial aid field have been focused on access, affordability, and inclusion for decades. And yet, students and families continue to struggle financially. This session explores whether traditional, media-hyped measures of college financial access, equity, and inclusion—while helpful starting points—are incomplete. Explore important aspects of admission and financial aid practices that directly impact students but are currently un- or under-examined despite being steeped in classism and racism. Go beyond the boiled-down binaries so often used to talk about our work and dig into additional, meaningful measures of access, equity, inclusion, and true affordability.
- Ashley Bianchi, Director of Student Financial Services, Williams College
- Liz Creighton, Dean of Admission and Student Financial Services, Williams College
- Twink Williams Burns, Strategic Adviser for Admission and Financial Aid Community Engagement, Williams College
- Attendees will examine 3 traditional measures of college financial access and equity and interrogate who and what these topics leave out, despite the sparkling headlines.
- Attendees will discuss and collaboratively workshop possible financial policy and/or practice solutions to bring back to their institutions.
- Attendees will learn that while every college community is unique and will require different solutions given differing budget constraints, every institution, and our field as a whole, can take action towards making the college journey truly more financially attainable and sustainable for all students.
A New Calculus for College Admission: Addressing Inequity in Mathematics:
(1 credit hour)
Calculus is rarely a requirement for admission into four-year colleges or universities. Yet, college-bound students looking for a competitive advantage often take Calculus to increase their chances of acceptance–especially for selective postsecondary institutions. Factoring Calculus into the admissions process as a measure of rigor, or to assess student talent ignores the fact that not all students have access to Calculus and reinforces inequity—with a pronounced effect on underserved students. It also overlooks the rapid expansion of 21st-century courses like data science and statistics that better align with many students’ aspirations. This session will highlight findings from a national survey of admissions professionals exploring the role of math course-taking in admission decisions. Leading thinkers on the issue will discuss traditional assumptions that drive the race to calculus and the opportunities to align admissions with 21st-century math pathways.
- Melodie Baker, National Policy Director, Just Equations
- Mark Cortez, Director of Outreach and Recruitment, The Ohio State University
- Brendan Kelly, Director of Introductory Math, Harvard
How Simplifying Admissions Results in More Accessible Pathways to Higher Education
(1 credit hour)
Instead of becoming easier and simpler, the application process has become increasingly complex and difficult for students. Reaching underrepresented populations requires not only lowering complex logistical, financial, and systemic barriers, but also a revolutionary shift in the admission process itself. What if we could dispense with the application process entirely? And what if we could offer year-round placement instead of compressing the process into the August–April timeline? Learn how a pilot project called Greenlight Match (that includes 25 community-based organizations, 10 higher ed institutions, and an edtech platform) increased college access for first-gen and low-income students by flipping the script on traditional admission processes. Could this be the future of more equitable, accessible, and inclusive college admission?
- Jonathan April, Managing Director, College Greenlight/EAB
- Keith Hebert, Director of Postsecondary, Civitas Education Partners
- Joe Morrison, CEO, Concourse
- Maira Rodriguez, Associate Director of Admissions – Chicago Region, Augustana College
- Admissions officers will learn how to reach more first-gen, low-income, underrepresented student populations through new technology.
- Counselors and secondary school leaders will learn how to work collaboratively with EdTech platforms to simplify admissions processes for students, especially those from minoritized populations where barriers are greater.
- Everyone will leave with new insights and ideas on how admissions can be simplified for students to provide greater access to higher education opportunities worldwide.
Why Did the Multicultural Recruitment Plan Fail?
(1 credit hour)
This interactive workshop is divided into three parts. First, you’ll learn about current efforts regarding multicultural recruitment plans on college campuses, including learning outcomes and assessment. Second, you’ll move into presenter-led small groups to discuss what challenges and obstacles you see when creating and implementing multicultural recruitment plans. Third, join a large group discussion on effective strategies for creating a multicultural recruitment plan.
- Richy Cains, Admission Counselor, Kalamazoo College
- Derek Dubose, Associate Vice Chancellor for Enrollment and Director of Admission, University of Denver
- Curtis Ferguson, Associate Director, University of Southern California
- Participants will obtain an overview of best practices for creating a multicultural recruitment plan.
- Participants will learn effective skills to create specific and measurable goals for a multicultural recruitment plan.
- Participants will learn effective skills to develop their own multicultural recruitment plan.
You are Called to Lead
(1 credit hour)
With the heightened awareness of racial injustices in our country and the complexity of the recruitment and admission funnel, the time is now for historically underrepresented individuals to be intentional about taking leadership positions within our offices. Only with changes in leadership can we successfully challenge racist practices and strategies tied to recruitment and admission. As staff members, we are often challenged with knowing the struggles of our students—but no one knows the struggles of us as professionals in the industry. We need leaders who understand the struggle and who can also challenge status quo behavior to move our organizations forward.
- Mosadi Porter, Associate Dean, Admissions and Outreach, Lone Star College – University Park
- Donnell Wiggins,Associate Vice President for Strategic Enrollment Management and Dean of Admission, University of Dayton
- Leadership rooted in a mission-based approach.
- Developing leadership through the lens of social justice.
- Developing strategies to create a culture within the organization that acknowledges all individuals and addresses the opportunity for change in your organizational spaces.
Latin X Student Recruitment Needs/Wants/Strategies
(1 credit hour)
The population of Latin X students is increasing dramatically. Examine best practices and strategies developed by admission professionals who both represent and recruit Latin X communities. Dive into the intersections that can be found—and leveraged—between the implicit cultural expectations of Latin X college-bound students and the college search process. Learn about recruitment strategies and gaps in supports, and walk away with a tool kit of language, strategies, and data-informed practices to elevate your game!
- Jose Garcia, Assistant Director of Admission for Diversity Outreach and Partnerships, University of Richmond
- Janixa Mejias, College Counselor, Uncommon Schools NSA Washington Park High School
- Learn about what Latin X students and families need during college admission process
- Discuss strategies used in helping Latin X students during the college admission process
- Give first hand experience
GWI is part of NACAC’s ongoing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion partnership with Salesforce.org
The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 5242. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. NACAC is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.
Sessions marked with a are offered for NBCC credit hours