Chief Enrollment Officers' Forum (CHIEF) 2020


Chief Enrollment Officers' Forum

A Three-Day, Faculty-Led Workshop from NACAC
Dec. 8, 9, and 11  |  Three hours per day

Crucial, timely, and expert information and support for higher education enrollment leaders.

About this workshop

Chief Enrollment Officers' Forum (CHIEF) delves into the varied demands on admission leaders for innovative and sustainable strategies that achieve institutional goals. The theme of this year’s workshop is The Chief Enrollment Officer as Chief Change Manager.

The workshop engages participants with prominent current and future considerations impacting enrollment management: diversity, access and inclusion, navigating modern media, and organizational change and strategic planning. Participants will tackle issues impacting the field such as changing demographics, diminishing budgets, and a heightened need for accountability and transparency. 

Incorporated into the workshop are research analysis, best practices and lessons learned, as well as dialogue among peers to foster a rigorous professional learning community.

The co-directors of CHIEF are Rachelle Hernandez, senior vice provost for enrollment management, University of Texas at Austin, and Keyana Scales, vice president for enrollment management, Xavier University of LouisianaCHIEF is offered as part of NACAC Workshop Week.

Who should attend

The CHIEF workshop is is designed to inform and support the efforts of senior-most enrollment and admission leaders in postsecondary institutions. 

Schedule information

This workshop is held over three, non-consecutive days: Dec. 8, 9, and 11. See below for a detailed breakdown of each day's schedule and featured presenters or download the schedule PDF.

Because so much information is conveyed during the workshop ― and in recognition of the need for busy professionals to also keep up on work and personal responsibilities ― a one-day break is built into the schedule.

Course materials

Recordings and workshop materials will be made available via the learning management system to registrants for two weeks after the last day of the workshop. 

How to register

Register today! The cost is $350 for members and $375 for non-members. Seats are limited.The registration deadline is Wednesday, Dec. 2 or when seats are filled. 

No refunds will be provided, although a substitute participant may be designated.


If you have any questions, feel free to contact us at For purchasing and billing questions, please contact


DAY 1 Schedule: Tuesday, Dec. 8


Opening Remarks

11 - 11:45 a.m. ET

Rachelle Hernandez, Senior Vice Provost for Enrollment Management, the University of Texas at Austin
Keyana Scales, Vice President for Enrollment Management, Xavier University of Louisiana

Session A

11:45 a.m. - 1 p.m. ET


2020 and Beyond: The Chief Enrollment Management Officer Role - Leader, Strategist, and Architect 

Much has changed over the last ten years in the enrollment management landscape. The responsibilities of Chief Enrollment Management Officers (CEMOs) have grown from admissions and financial aid to include other key college and university leadership roles. Many CEMOs are leading key campus initiatives and partnering with other university leaders to help their campus communities address key challenges related to the enrollment and success of both new and continuing students. Experts from private and public institutions of higher education will share how their portfolios have changed and the challenges and opportunities connected to these changes. Attendees will review examples of structures from multiple institutions and identify strategies for working with their campus leadership to shape a portfolio and organizational structures that make the most sense for their role, their campus, and their institutional goals.

Presenters: Courtney McAnuff, vice chancellor for enrollment management, Rutgers University (NJ), and Nathan Fuerst, vice president for enrollment planning and management, University of Connecticut.


Meal Break
1 - 1:30 p.m. ET


Session B

1:30 - 2:45 p.m. ET


Managing Up, Part 1: What our Presidents and Provosts and other Campus Leaders Need from the CEMO

You are the Chief Enrollment Management Officer (CEMO), but you are still accountable to others and the final decisions regarding your work doesn’t always rest with you. Especially as CEMO, your job relies on collaboration with campus partners and a strong and positive working relationship with your Provost, President, and often the Board. Other stakeholders affect your work and outcomes—making campus relationships partnerships key to success in your role. In this session, learn key practices and strategies used by experienced CEMOs to support campus outcomes so that your impact and your desired messages are well-received, understood, and remembered. 

Presenters: Fayneese Miller, president, Hamline University (MN); Mai Nhia Xiong-Chan, vice president of enrollment management, Hamline University (MN); Keyana Scales, vice president for enrollment management, Xavier University of Louisiana; and Anne McCall, senior vice president for academic affairs and provost, Xavier University of Louisiana.


Session C

3 - 4:15 p.m. ET


Managing Up Part 2: What It Means Now (Supporting Strategic Direction and Key Decisions in Light of Covid-19.)

Effective Chief Enrollment Management Officers (CEMOs) build information-rich campuses, not just data-rich environments. Our colleagues often want the information we have and they want to know how we are using it, but they don’t necessarily know what they need or how to request it. Our campuses frequently create quite a swirl of data collection and production efforts—but what we really want to do is make sure we are provided data that helps people make decisions. We want our staff members, our campus partners, and our leadership to make good, data-informed decisions that align with our strategies and, most importantly, help our campuses achieve our goals. CEMOs have a responsibility to connect the dots and help campus see the impact of the strategies and collective efforts implemented in, or in partnership with, the enrollment management unit. Especially now, when the pandemic impacts our trends and student behaviors in ways we have not seen before. Learn what they are tracking, with whom they are sharing what and when, and how people access it. Learn how experts in the field keep their campus partners and leadership abreast of the work they are doing and the impact they are making. 

Presenters: Kristina Wong Davis, vice president for enrollment management, Purdue University (IN), and Lee Melvin, vice provost for enrollment management, University at Buffalo, SUNY (NY).



DAY 2 Schedule: Wednesday, Dec. 9



1 - 1:15 p.m. ET


Session D
1:15 - 2:30 p.m. ET



Serving Diverse Student Populations Now and Into the Future

A successful enrollment management effort isn’t just meeting first year or transfer student enrollment needs. CEMOs must ensure that practices and efforts in new student enrollment align with university mission and goals. Campus leadership often looks to the CEMO to ensure that campus practices align and effectively serve our changing student populations. More first-generation students and more low-income students? More transfer students? What works to support recruitment and enrollment of diverse student populations? What must be considered when creating recruitment and enrollment efforts focused on serving diverse student populations? How do we better plan for or anticipate changes in our student populations in the coming years and how can we help our campuses prepare our campuses to serve an increasingly diverse population of students? 

Presenters: Kasey Urquidez, vice president for enrollment management and dean of undergraduate admissions, University of Arizona, and Matthew Ward, vice president for enrollment management, California Lutheran University.


Session E
2:45 - 4 p.m. ET


Your Campus Enrollment Management Strategic Plan (How to Leverage It If You Have One, And Key Elements to Include If You Need to Create One)

As a CEMO, your campus is looking to you to inform the direction for the future. A successful enrollment management effort includes meeting first year enrollment needs while ensuring enrollment practices and efforts align with university mission and goals. Strategic enrollment management plans help campuses focus energy during challenging times and understand the impact resource allocations have on enrollment and the achievement of other campus goals. This session will address the following critical questions: What are the most essential components of a strategic enrollment plan in the era of COVID-19? How should CEMOs modify existing plans to accommodate recent changes to campus and the ever-evolving higher education landscape? What issues and expectations should CEMOs be prepared to address next year, or the next few years? How do CEMOs keep the attention of key campus constituencies and engage them in strategic enrollment efforts?

Presenters: Sharon Alston, vice provost for undergraduate enrollment, American University (DC), and Lynn Barnes, senior vice president for strategic enrollment, University of Texas at San Antonio.

DAY 3 Schedule: Friday, Dec. 11



11 - 11:15 a.m. ET


Session F

11:15 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. ET



Transitioning – What to Know When Moving Up or Moving On

Many campuses are creating or changing their CEMO roles.  With new changes and opportunities, it is hard to know what one should consider and what resources one can (and should) request when considering a transition. What key information or questions should one ask of themselves and their institution when making a significant career change to, or in the CEMO role? This session features colleagues who recently transitioned into a CEMO role or moved to new campus communities. Attendees should expect to learn what proved most important when transitioning successfully; what panelists wish they would have known before making the transition; and how to make a successful shift from director to AVP/VP. 

Presenters: Derek Kindle, vice president for enrollment management, University of Wisconsin;Tani Castaneda, chief enrollment officer and associate vice president, Teachers College, Columbia University; and Kristin Tichenor, vice president for enrollment, Wentworth Institute of Technology (MA).


Meal Break
12:30 - 1:15 p.m. ET


Session G

1:15 - 2:30 p.m. ET


Modern Media - Friend or Foe? Best Practices for Traditional Media, Social Media, Blogs, Podcasts and Other Mediums

This session invites attendees to learn from and engage with colleagues who successfully leverage social and other media while expertly guiding and informing students, counselors, and the public. Receive valuable tips on interacting with the press and establishing good working relationships with reporters. You will learn the kind of information reporters often seek, key trends shaping media coverage, and the importance of maintaining working relationships with those who cover your institutions. Hear from colleagues who have created new ways to share their honesty, humility, and humanity through different forms of media. Attendees will participate in a media training and receive key best practices from sitting CEMOS that they can apply immediately, even during crisis, to support your campus, your teams, and your work. 

Presenters: Eric Hoover, senior writer, The Chronicle of Higher Education; Adrienne Oddi, dean of admissions and financial aid, Trinity College (CT); and Jon Boeckenstedt, vice provost for enrollment management, Oregon State University.  

Session H

2:45 - 4 p.m. ET


Expert Q & A – What Is On Your Mind?

Networking and sharing is critical to CEMO success. Through smaller group discussion breakouts, attendees will have the opportunity to ask experienced CEMOs their pressing questions. Experienced CEMO leaders will address key questions inspired by the CHIEF workshops and across ‘top of mind topics’ to close out the workshop will lead breakout sessions. 

Presenters: Rachelle Hernandez, senior vice provost for enrollment management, University of Texas at Austin; Keyana Scales, vice president for enrollment management, Xavier University of Louisiana; Rob Alexander, dean of admissions, financial aid, and enrollment management, University of Rochester (NY); Luisa Havens Gerardo, vice provost for enrollment management, Virginia Tech University; John Barnhill, associate vice president for enrollment management, Florida State University; and Rodney Morrison, vice president for enrollment management, University of Delaware.


Workshop Recap and Closing
4:15 - 4:45 p.m. ET


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