10 Reasons Why I Love the EACE Conference
By Tiffany J. Franklin, Associate Director, Career Services, University of Pennsylvania
1. Making new friends/Connecting with past conference buddies
From the time I arrived at my first EACE conference in Pittsburgh 2015, people were so welcoming. During that first lunch, I felt like I had already made a few friends. Throughout the conference it was so easy to meet people – before keynotes, during breaks, in sessions, and at entertainment night. I had only worked at the University of Pennsylvania for a few months at that time and found that I even got to know my Penn colleagues better from traveling together. I will always look back at that trip and smile.
2. The Keynote Speakers
Each year I enjoy hearing the keynote speakers and getting a little more perspective on the world. I feel like I can take their tips and not only serve our students better, but also apply them to my own life. I’m excited to hear Jeffrey Selingo this year on Monday, June 25 from 1:00 – 2:00 PM in the Grand Ballroom DEFG.
3. Entertainment Night
My personal favorite is entertainment night because it’s such a great way to connect with everybody that you met so far and you get to see some fun places in a new city (or your own for that matter), dance and have good food and drinks. Here is a picture from the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philly. The music is legendary! This year in Reston, VA, join us at 7:30 p.m. sharp for the Hypnotist Show in Ballroom D followed by dancing, drinks, desserts, and a DJ in Ballroom ABCD! Make your dinner reservations early so you get back in time for the show at 7:30pm this year.
4. Learning Something New
The break-out sessions are great way to gain a new perspective on things that you’ve been working on or learn about a new area and hear best practices from other schools. I always appreciate the ideas that I’m able to take back to my office. Many conference sessions may offer credit through SHRM or HRCI for attending, so that’s an added bonus.
5. Feeling Validated
Going to these break-out sessions is always validating because it’s nice to hear how other schools have faced similar challenges in delivering the best services to students and employers. I enjoy learning about the innovative practices of other schools and sharing ours as well.
6. The morning Activity
Full disclosure here – I’m not much of a morning person, so I only did the morning activity once. It was the was morning run/walk to the Philadelphia Art Museum during EACE 2016. I have to say it was a lot of fun and I may have to give the morning workout thing another try. Don’t miss the morning Yoga session this year in Reston, VA at 6:30 a.m. in Grand Ballroom B! The class will combine poses with corrective movement and self-massage using Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Balls to improve body awareness and de-stress. For full details, check out the EACE Annual Conference app. You can also see http://www.eace.org/2018conferenceschedule.
7. Seeing the sights
Each annual conference, whether Pittsburgh, Philly, Niagara Falls, or Reston provides a great opportunity to see a new city or rediscover your own. Here are some pics from the past few conferences. The one from Pittsburgh was taken on a duck tour where colleague and friend, Anne Marie Dickinson, and I had a few hours before we needed to leave for the airport at the end of the conference. We took a Duck Tour around Pittsburgh and it was a great way to see the city.
Seeing Ducks on the Duck Tour of Pittsburgh following EACE 2015 (T. Franklin/iPhone)
Gotta love the zoom feature on your phone’s camera – Niagara Falls EACE 2017 (T. Franklin/iPhone)
8. The Selfie contest
The selfie contest is always a lot of fun both for group and individual pictures. Here’s one with my Penn colleagues/friends from last year when we were going to dinner over in Canada and wanted to take a picture with Niagara Falls in the background. I’m not sure how we got such a good picture (Thanks Mylène!), but I’ll always be grateful for that one.
Be sure to enter the selfie contest this year. Post using #EACE18 and #EACEselfie on Twitter! There will be Amazon gift cards for the winners of both an individual selfie and a team photo.
Penn Career Services at Niagara Falls – L to R: David Ross, Anne Marie Dickinson, me, Claire Klieger, Mylène Kerschner – (M. Kerschner/iPhone – thanks for your awesome group selfie skills)
9. Getting Involved
The conference is such a great opportunity to get involved in various committees associated with EACE. Not only does it provide an easy way to get to know people, but it’s also helpful for building your leadership skills and having a fun time in the process. Be sure to stop by the hospitality suite during EACE 2018 in Reston, VA and look at all the opportunities to get involved. Whether you like something that’s very social or you prefer behind the scenes work, they have you covered with every type of opportunity.
10. Dine for a Cause/Charity
What can I say – eating and doing good at the same time – sign me up!! Catch up on other attendees’ experiences by searching #EACE18 on Twitter and Instagram. EACE provides an array of opportunities to contribute to charity and have fun in the process as you’re connecting with people. Be sure to check out the restaurants this year and also bring your $10 gift card donations, where all contributions will be donated to the Embry Rucker Community Shelter in Reston. http://www.eace.org/2018conference-communityservice
Check out the EACE 2018 Conference App for a detailed schedule and everything you need to know, as well as the website at http://www.eace.org/overview.
See you in Reston, Virginia on Monday, June 25th!!
Tiffany Franklin joined the University of Pennsylvania Career Services team in 2014 as Associate Director and provides career and internship guidance to engineering students and alumni. Prior to coming to Penn, Tiffany served as a recruiter on the technology team of an international staffing company. From 2006 to 2013, Tiffany worked at Vanderbilt University in the Career Center. She earned her M.S.Ed. in Psychological Services from Penn’s Graduate School of Education and a B.A. in Psychology from Vanderbilt University.