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Rejuvenation! A Reflection on my EACE Experience

By Brittany Duncan, York College of Pennsylvania

As I walked to the falls at 6:05 Thursday morning, I was feeling tired (I hadn’t had my coffee yet!), and overwhelmed by all of the thoughts running through my mind – still reflecting on the end of the academic year, ways to improve, and how I was going to manage to soak up all of the information EACE was going to provide!

Upon arriving at the falls a few minutes later, I had a pause in all of my jumbled thoughts as I stood and took in the scenery.  I had a moment of peace, clarity, and reflection.  I felt invigorated and excited to be standing there, taking in the beauty, and feeling lucky that I had been given the opportunity to travel to Niagara Falls as a recipient of the Professional Development Grant EACE awarded me.  Conference-going is not new to me, but something felt different about EACE.  It was a feeling of connectedness, an excitement that I hadn’t felt at previous large-scale conferences.

Niagara DayOn my walk back (with a lot less noise going in in my head), I was refreshed and ready to take on the day.  I think that’s one of the most important takeaways from the EACE experience as I reflect my walk to the falls and the rest EACE – REJUVENATION!  Starting my position less than a year ago at York College in PA, I was excited to transition back in to the world of career development.   It was a whirlwind fall semester, and an even faster spring semester – I was exhausted by the end!  And not unlike my morning walk to the falls, with all of the chatter in my head, I had a revolving door of ideas in my brain on how I could do better, how I could make more impactful and meaningful connections with my students and YCP, and was I actually doing a good job?  I was in search of some clarity, refreshing ideas, and the need to step outside of my own box. What better way to do that than attend EACE?

EACE provided me with sessions that challenged me to consider my approach to working with students, how I/we deliver our services, that how we advertise matters, and that it’s incredibly easy to fall in to our routines and traditional practices – and that it’s okay to do that, but it’s also okay to try new things!  Also- shout out to Emily Merritt of the University of Connecticut for her “Top Ten Activities for your Career Counseling Toolkit” session!  This fresh perspective on a variety of ways to engage and interact with my students will be extremely helpful moving forward, and made me even more excited for the year to come!

Progressing through the conference, my mind filled with possibility – but instead of feeling overwhelmed, I continued to feel rejuvenatNiagara Nighted (a few more walks to the falls didn’t hurt, either)!  As I left EACE with some new connections and my color-coded conference notes, I think about how I can give back to EACE and how excited I am to be a part of the committees I signed up for.  I’m looking forward to where this organization can take me, and how I can contribute.  The ability to become immediately involved and pursue not only my professional development, but the development of EACE excites me.  I’m ready to take my end of year reflections, the wealth of information I’ve gained, the connections I’ve made – and weave them all together to in my own unique way in order to continue to do the work that I enjoy and appreciate even more after attending EACE.  So now, if I need a little pick-me-up, I’ll take a look at one of my many pictures of the falls and feel ready to accomplish great things.  With a hot cup of coffee in hand, of course.

Brittany Duncan is an Assistant Director at York College of Pennsylvania’s Career Development Center.  Brittany received an EACE Professional Development Grant to attend the 2017 EACE Conference in Niagara Falls, NY.

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Top 10 Ways to Get the Most from Your Summer Internship

By Kate Szumanski, Villanova University, Director of Professional Development and Internships

Congratulations! You’ve secured a summer internship! Perhaps you already have worked one, two, or three weeks on the job. You’re adapting to your new routine and schedule, applying your knowledge, exploring career paths, and growing your expertise in the “real world.”

This is terrific, right? We pat ourselves on the back for a job well done.

But now what? What’s next?

You can maximize your summer internship by following my #TopTen tips for success on the job. If you follow this advice, I promise that you’ll gain huge benefits from your summer work experience that will extend well into the new academic year and beyond. These healthy approaches to work will become lifelong healthy habits if you commit to them now.

  1. Arrive on Time. It’s a given, right? Get to work on time. Be punctual. And if the bus or train is late, or if there is a massive traffic jam on the highway, alert your co-workers when you safely can. Your thoughtfulness will be noticed. #Professionalism
  2. Dress for Success. Be clean, neat, and appropriate in attire, and if you have questions about appropriate dress, feel free to ask someone on your team. Again, your thoughtfulness will be noticed. #Professionalism
  3. Bring a Can-Do, Positive Attitude. Everyone gravitates toward the person in the office who is resourceful and motivated, and who creatively and collaboratively solves problems. Be this person. Be the person who everyone else says is a joy to work with. You know this person, and if it is you, all the better. #Professionalism
  4. Show Initiative. Complete your assignments early? Identify a mundane task that needs attention in the workplace? Be the person who says, “May I devote a bit of time to organizing the supply closet?” I can almost guarantee that this type of initiative will get you out of the supply closet and onto a more enriching and meaningful assignment. (But never underestimate the value of a tidy supply closet. Harmonious workplaces are built — in part — on clean and neat shared spaces. It reflects respect for others.) #Professionalism
  5. Meet or Exceed Deadlines. Complete your work accurately and on time. Ensure that the quality of your work is top notch. Don’t sacrifice quality for speed. Don’t rush but don’t dillydally, either. #Professionalism
  6. Communicate Wisely. This is a tricky one. Maybe you initially don’t have questions about your assignments, but as you dive into them, important questions emerge. You might feel embarrassed to ask clarifying questions. On the other hand, maybe you freely ask questions without first doing some smart investigating on your own. (True confession: One of my workplace pet peeves is when I’m asked questions that easily can be answered by some quick Web surfing.) Don’t be “that intern” who either never asks questions or who asks waaaaaay too many. Communicate wisely at the right times. Maybe you have a standing meeting with your supervisor. That’s a good time.Maybe you can e-mail back and forth comfortably. That’s a good strategy. Maybe you can stop by his or her office. That’s another good strategy. Read your supervisor and try to pick up on subtle cues that reveal his or her preferred communication style. Don’t under-communicate, but don’t overdo it, either. #Professionalism
  7. Lunch With Co-Workers. It’s tempting to eat alone or to run errands at lunchtime, and you certainly can spend your lunch hour this way. You also can commit yourself to a professional lunch date once or twice a week. Get to know people in and out of your department. Why did they gravitate to their roles and to this particular organization? What advice do they have for emerging young professionals like you who seek to enter the field? These opportunities allow you to practice the art of networking and science of small talk. You’ll also learn how to talk about yourself in meaningful ways that resonate positively and memorably with others. A HUGE tangential benefit of getting to know your co-workers better is improved teamwork. (See above photo.) We don’t work in isolation, alone in a vacuum. We collaborate with others. Be the intern who both recognizes and values the importance of a high-functioning team! Cultivate team by reaching out and communicating. #Professionalism
  8. Connect on Linked In. Professional relationships can extend well beyond your 10-week summer internship if you remain connected. The social media platform, Linked In, allows you to remain connected to individuals you’ve met on the job. (And while you’re actively connecting on Linked In, be sure to update your Linked In profile with your summer internship.) #Professionalism
  9. Be the Intern Who Says, “YES!” When your boss presents an either challenging or seemingly un-fun project, be the intern who says, “Yes, I’ll do it.” Initiative and positive attitude demonstrated? Check! Face time with the boss? Check! Will this lead to bigger and better things? Potentially a check! A risk worth taking? Yes, you bet it is! #Professionalism
  10. Always, Always Be Professional. If you’ve read this far, you’ve noticed a recurring theme and hashtag: #Professionalism. This concept is described in detail on the Mind Tools Web site, and I’ll quote from it here:

Professionalism is a trait that’s highly valued in the workforce. It has many attributes, including:

  1. Specialized knowledge.
  2. Competency.
  3. Honesty and integrity.
  4. Accountability.
  5. Self-regulation.
  6. Looking the part.

To improve your own professionalism, focus on improving in each of these areas.

Your summer internship will help you develop these areas and understand each more fully.

I’ll leave you with a question that we ask our summer interns at Villanova University in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences who are earning academic credit for their summer internships: What does professionalism mean to you?

***

Kate Szumanski, ’95, ’97, is the director of internships and professional development in the Office for Undergraduate Students in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Villanova University. Follow her on Twitter @KateSzumanski.

Cranky Director’s Corner – A Word on Work

Let’s get philosophical for a moment, shall we? While perusing the NACE Journal’s May issue I naturally gravitated to the article on what Princeton University has done to reimagine career services. Generally visionary, the piece got me thinking about the nature of work and our relationship to it, both personally and professionally. What exactly do I mean by that? Simply this: we live and operate in a society that views work as a necessary evil, or at least an inconvenience, yet our own professional activities center on helping others acquire jobs and navigate careers. Even Princeton’s use of a three tiered framework – job, career, calling – belies this underlying sense that work must be dressed up to be made palatable. Further evidence lies in how we talk about work and our jobs: TGIF, dreading Mondays, working for the weekend, the threat of delayed retirement. Of course, there is a distinction to be made in the work in our jobs and the frictions, usually with people, that can lead us to desire a break; but there remains an underlying longing to move on to leisure. Why IS binge watching on Netflix so appealing rather than appalling?

Much of this stems from ancient Greek thinking that exalted leisure and reviled labor. Apparently Olympus was filled with gods living the life of Riley while humans had been tricked or trapped into working. Plato, Aristotle, and the rest of the thinking class perpetuated and reinforced this concept. Clearly we have inherited that thinking. And by we I mean all cultures influenced by the ancient Greeks, including those “visited” by Alexander. Follow your passion/calling/love and you will never work a day in your life, right? The subtext is clear, work is to be avoided.

We can attempt a biological explanation. Physical and mental labor burns energy and we naturally want to conserve energy for survival. We also tend to avoid discomfort, and physical work can leave us sore, stiff, or even injured. That said, some of us then go to the gym, run marathons, tackle challenging puzzles, or write poetry as leisure activities. We look forward to and will expend time and energy on something we designate leisure more readily than something we designate work. While the matter offers more complexity than this, the point remains.

By reinforcing this way of thinking embedded in our culture we perpetrate at least two harms. First, we create a hierarchy of labor which leads to a hierarchy of laborers. The poor shlub on the back of the garbage truck (job) compared to career development directors (career, hopefully calling). Second, we ignore or devalue the intrinsic value of work. You could point out we in fact value hard work and speak highly of those with a strong work ethic, but we usually apply that to work with a goal, as opposed to valuing the work itself. Work is the way to get the payoff, as opposed to being the payoff.

I challenge all of us as we tip into summer to take time to rethink our relationship to work – how we think about it, talk about it, teach about it – and bring a new, countercultural notion to the activities we expend energy on. Can we effect such radical change? Maybe, maybe not. Resistance will be high. But who is better positioned to introduce and advocate for a new way of relating to work?

The cranky director will deliver rants on the economy, technology, social engineering, lack of a really good nearby regional BBQ place (falafel solved!), and idiot politicians (broadly defined)  to your computer desktop of preferred mobile device the fourth Friday of every month.

Last Presidential Flashback until CONFERENCE!

I hope you’ve enjoyed this journey looking back at the organization through the eyes of our past presidents and I hope you are getting packed and ready to journey to the falls and help us cheers to 20 years of EACE!

Our last Presidential Flashback takes us from 2012 – 2015 as we highlight Adrienne Alberts, Jennifer Barr, and Scott Rappaport (left to right), who’s picture features 2 past presidents and our future president Stacy McClelland!

 

Adrienne Alberts: 2012 – 2013
American Red Cross

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    My first conference was in 1998 and I believe it was at the conference center at Georgetown University. I was a DAC scholarship award winner and I was elated to be at the conference.
    P.S. EACE still offers scholarships (and grants!) Check them out on eace.org under “Scholarships, Grants & Awards”.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    I have so many proud EACE moments, but one that I fought hard for was the exploration of employer engagement vs. solely looking at membership. In my time as president, we like all other associations, were grappling with how to increase employer membership. Having made the transition from higher ed to corporate and understanding the pressures with budgets and providing ROI on investments, I knew that my organization may or may not invest in a membership but they would absolutely support my attendance at a conference or engagement at worthwhile events. All of that participation is engagement and exactly what college members were looking for. So after several intense discussions, we agreed as a board to measure engagement while continuing to work to improve membership. The infographic at that year’s conference was like a gift. It truly showcased how engaged employers are in EACE and I was extremely proud. Capturing the right metric to truly tell a story is something we all work on as leaders. This one was important to me and I believe beneficial to EACE and I remain very proud of our willingness to see things through a different lens and push boundaries for EACE and our profession!
    P.S. Check out the legacy of Adrienne’s proudest EACE moment at this year’s conference where you will find the “EACE 2016 – 2017 Year Wrap Up”!

Jennifer Barr: 2013 – 2014
Haverford College

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    My first EACE conference was the first Danvers, Mass. conference. I distinctly remember being swept into an amazing group of EACE members that included Matthew Brink, Amy Feifer and Sam Ratcliffe. There may have been a boat to Maine involved, as well as a drive to Portsmouth, NH. Most of all, I remember the incredible welcome that I received, and the commitment everyone had to the organization. As a result of that first conference, I was eager to be involved.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    There are so many! The moments that pop into my head include Road Trips to the Real World – a program I started during my first chair experience with what was called the Liberal Arts Network. I am also so proud of introducing Group Membership during my time on the Board as the Director of Membership, which other Regional ACEs have now adopted. Finally, I am incredibly proud of my time as President. I have so many proud moments during the 2013-2014 year, but most important to mention is that everything we accomplished was because of the wonderful Board Members that supported me. EACE works best when volunteers work together, and some of my proudest moments are because of that great collaborative spirit!

Scott Rappaport: 2014 – 2015
University of Delaware 

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    My first EACE conference was in Pittsburgh in 2004, when we returned in 2015 I was president of the association 🙂
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    While I hope all the formal things that I have done with EACE have a lasting impact, I honestly feel my proudest moment from EACE was seeing so many EACE folks at my wedding. EACE is all about relationships, I have built relationships that will be life long friendships. I couldn’t ask for anything else.
    And on that note we wish you many congrats on the birth of your child earlier this month!

We hope everyone has enjoyed this look back at the presidents of our organization and that now you will recognize their faces at the conference and go introduce yourselves – especially all you newcomers!

Get tips on your trip to help you pack and get organized! See you in Niagara Falls!

The Millennial Journey: How to Mitigate Buyer’s Remorse in Education

By Gorick Ng, MBA Student, Harvard Business School

According to a recent Gallup poll, 51% of U.S. adults would change at least one of their education decisions (degree, institution, and/or field of study) if they had a chance to re-do their post-secondary degrees.[1] With 44 million Americans[2] each sitting on an average of $37,172 in student loans,[3] we should expect less buyer’s remorse, no?

We should. And we can.

Although a number of socioeconomic and sociocultural factors underpin the current higher ed crisis, I’d like to highlight an often overlooked element: our lack of foresight as students.

Our “conveyor belt” education system has always fed us the next step: do well in kindergarten and first grade will be waiting. Do well in middle school and high school will be there. Do well in high school and college becomes the next step.

Along the way, the default strategy is often to look to John on our left and choose the same school, look to Jenny on our right and choose the same major, and look to our parents and take a similar path. In a constant attempt to keep our heads above water in the face of midterms, homework, essays, jobs, activities, peer pressure, and family obligations we feel there’s no time to reflect on what are doing, why we’re doing these things, and how this all shapes the person we aspire to become. Since this “conveyor belt” kept moving anyways, we were largely sheltered from the consequences of our actions – and inaction.

But what happens towards the end of this “conveyor belt”?

Some students rush to their campus career centers in search of guidance, sometimes days before commencement. Others look to graduate school not as a career enhancing opportunity, but rather an extension of their runway. It is no surprise that buyer’s remorse is so prevalent in higher education.

How do we address this issue? Start from within.

Treat every new experience as a hypothesis test.

TickConsider life as a scatterplot: Speaking with someone (or not)? Taking a course (or not)? Taking care of a loved one (or not)? Getting a job (or not)? Working on a project (or not)? Doing an internship (or not)? Joining a club (or not)? Volunteering with an organization (or not)?

Each experience accumulated (or foregone) is another observation on this scatterplot – and another opportunity to introspect:

  1. What attracted me to (or repelled me from) this?
  2. What did I enjoy / find to be a chore? Why?
  3. What was I good at / not good at? Why?
  4. How much do I like / respect the people? Why?
  5. To what extent can I live a comfortable, fulfilling life doing this? Why?

Imagine our desired future selves as the invisible regression line. If we have just two dots, it can be tempting to draw a straight line and yell “Eureka! I should become a [whatever]!”

But the more dots we can collect, the better our ability is to identify the sweet spot at the intersection of what we are good at, what we are passionate about, and what pays the bills.

This model is not perfect, but with it we can better leverage what we know about ourselves at the time to make more informed decisions about what school to attend, what field of study to pursue, which degree to obtain, and what job to take out of school. Though it takes time, effort, and serious introspection, our future selves will thank us.

[1] http://www.gallup.com/poll/211529/half-adults-change-least-one-education-decision.aspx

[2] https://www.newyorkfed.org/medialibrary/interactives/householdcredit/data/xls/sl_update_2016.xlsx

[3] https://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2016/05/02/student-debt-is-about-to-set-another-record-but-the-picture-isnt-all-bad/

Gorick Ng helps Millennials more successfully transition from school to the workplace. From his work Gorick has spent thousands of hours understanding the experiences of Millennials, career counselors, and employers – and the “soft skills” and “hard skills” gaps that exist.

Gorick is pursuing his MBA Harvard Business School and is a graduate of Harvard College, where he now serves as a Resident Tutor leading pre-career advising. He was the first in his family to attend high school and college and is passionate about helping young people pursue their dreams.

More on Gorick here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/gorickng

Contextually Careers: Turning Data Into Action

By Alicia Monroe, Ed.D., Assistant Director, Office of Career Advancement, Rowan University

Data, data, everywhere, What do I look at? OR Where do I begin? OR What should I capture? OR How do I assess? Now, you fill in the blank. Depending on the day, time, moment and/or sense of urgency, I mull over these questions with a look of despair on my face, wondering if there is really a way out of the data maze.  For many, the dreaded “D” word can oftentimes overwhelm us, as our questions rapidly surpass the responses.

In this, the digital age, data is increasingly used to drive decision-making. We can no longer depend solely on our intuitive sense. The millennium has ushered in a paradigm shift where data and metrics are used to assess and evaluate our activities and actions. Analyzing data, metrics, and trend development allows us, as career services professionals, to strategically shift priorities, tweak programs and reposition resources in order to get desired results and outcomes.

The need is for us to have quantifiables and meaningful metrics that can measure success and inform strategic planning efforts and decision-making. As we rethink the status quo and reframe traditional norms, our focus now rests on redefining what constitutes positive outcomes. As I muddle through key performance indicators, usability studies, reputation measures, surveys, focus groups, and other forms of evaluation and assessment, I have to first make meaning of this arduous task for myself.

Status Quo Graphic

The first step is to understand and commit to the “why” behind the work. As we collect, review, and analyze the data, our core value of having students find careers that reflect their gifts, talents, skills and interests should anchor the stories that we tell and the decisions that we make. Although it is important to collect data, what’s most valuable and vital to the decision-making process is the analysis of the data and the story that we are able to tell to provide insight and meaningful outcomes to students, recruiters, influential stakeholders, and career service organizations.

Next determine the “what.” In other words, are you asking the right questions to get the outcomes that you are looking for? The simplest definition of data-driven decision making is the use of data analysis to determine the courses of action to take to meet objectives and prescribed mandates. In addition to asking the “right” questions, it is imperative to understand “what” data- qualitative or quantitative- and “what” analyses inform our decision-making. Measurable learning outcomes, the effective use of assessment and evaluation methods, along with stakeholder demands for better career outcomes data, are forces that motivate us to slow the process down in order to make the right assumptions. Giving ourselves time to reexamine long-held beliefs and practices gives us the space to develop meaningful metrics that measure our actual performance. All in all, asking the right questions provides us the data that we need to engage in better analyses.

As we review our data collection methods, we must also revisit our tools and protocols. This is the “how.” How we collect our data must align with our objectives (the story we want to tell), the questions that we ask, and the type of data that we collect. Questions that engage student voice and insights from employers and other stakeholders should be evident in the assessments, as these responses afford us the opportunity to gain a clear picture of the expectations met, level of satisfaction achieved with career services delivery, and areas that require improvement.

Our career center stories inform our students and influential stakeholders. Looking at data through a purposed, well-focused, and intentional lens provides career services professionals the valuable insight needed to ground and promote their efficacy in the important work they do. To learn how to best tell your career center’s success story and dive deeper into multi-modal approaches for using data to frame an effective story line, attend the 2017 EACE Annual Conference, Pre- Conference Workshop- Shaping Your Career Center’s Success Story facilitated by Sam Ratcliffe, Ph.D. You can also view and contribute a number of resources in EACE’s Assessment Hub.

References:

Collins, M. (2016) “#NACE2021: Trends and Predictions.” NACE. Retrieved from https://www.naceweb.org/career-development/trends-and-predictions/nace2021-trends-and-predictions/

Contomanolis, E., Cruzvergara, C., Dey, F., & Steinfeld, T. “The Future of Career Services is Now.” NACE Journal. November 2015. Retrieved from https://www.naceweb.org/career-development/trends-and-predictions/the-future-of-career-services-is-now/

Picciano, A. (2011) Educational leadership and planning for technology. Boston, MA: Pearson.

Dr. Monroe serves as Assistant Director, OCA at Rowan University. She has developed a number of notable programs designed to actively engage students in a college to career continuum of achievement. #itsALLaboutthestudents @amonroeedd

Presidential Flashback: 2009 – 2012

We are barely a week away from conference! I am getting excited to see my EACE friends, catch up [IRL] with some of the past presidents we have been highlighting, and meet as many of the 146 newcomers [!!!] as possible. Hope you are all packed and ready to go…or at least registered.

Our Presidential Flashback takes us from 2009 straight to 2012 as we highlight the following fearless leaders of our organization: Helen Brown, Deborah D’Attilio, and John Fracchia (left to right).

Helen Brown: 2009 – 2010
Vector Marketing

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    2002 in Danvers, MA
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    Finding a new management firm for EACE. Both of the conference chairs in 2010 are presidents. (Stacy and Scott)

Deborah D’Attilio: 2010 – 2011
Enterprise Holdings

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    White Plains, NY
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    Helping rebrand the organization and transition to our new management company.

John Fracchia: 2011 – 2012
Ithaca College 

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    My first EACE conference was in Seven Springs, PA (2000) when I had just shifted from Residential Life to Career Services. My biggest memory is that it rained the whole week! I think of Norfolk 2003 (my second conference) as my first, because it was the one where I really started to engage with the organization and met so many good friends.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    Proudest moment is a tough one . . . Being a person-centered organization is something I’ve always valued about EACE and I tried to make it a central tenet of my presidential year. I heard so many comments after our conference in Portland, ME, about how connected and included people felt and if there’s a “proudest moment,” that’s probably it.

Presidential Flashback – A Decade Apart

A decade apart in leadership our next Presidential Flashback features Nancy Dudak and Donna Ratcliffe.

nancyNancy Dudak: 1998 – 1999
Villanova University

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    My first conference was in 1983 at Seven Springs, PA right outside of Pittsburgh. It was MAPA at the time. We had our annual conferences in the fall back then and I had only been on the job for about 2 months.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    My proudest moments were speaking to the newcomers at the conferences. Most of them were young, new professionals and I enjoyed seeing their enthusiasm and energy for the career development profession. I spoke to them about the rewards of becoming involved with professional associations and of course the best one (MAPA ->MAACE -> EACE)

donnaratcliffeDonna Cassell Ratcliffe: 2008 – 2009
Virginia Tech 

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    My first regional conference was in 1988 in Baltimore, MD (Middle Atlantic Placement Association MAPA – later merged with another association to create EACE). That year I received a MAPA Research Grant for my dissertation research and had the opportunity to present my dissertation topic, research process and outcomes at the annual conference. I remember someone coming up to me after my session who said “It is rare to attend a conference and have scholarly work presented.” Made me smile.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    In 2003 the EACE Board decided to move from a single employee model of support to an association management firm to provide financial, technical, and other support services to the board, committees, and members. Known as EACE Headquarters (HQ), this company was located in Wisconsin. With the exception of two HQ staff members who attended board meetings, we interacted with the others by phone or emails to conduct association business. During my year as President Elect, board members and committee chairs were challenged by communication, quality, and timeliness of services issues with HQ staff. With the goal to improve relationships and productivity, I decided that my first board meeting as EACE president (summer of 2008) would be in Oak Creek, WI to meet all HQ staff face-to-face. Strategic planning meetings, tour of the office, meeting in teams with HQ staff, an afternoon cookout and an evening at a Brewers baseball game proved to be beneficial to EACE business.

Only a few more weeks until we are all together in Niagara Falls to celebrate 20 Years of EACE! I hope you are all signed up for conference and getting excited by these fun things to do in Niagara Falls. See you on the Maiden of the Mist!

Past Presidents Flashback

Before we head out for a long weekend we’ve got another dose of our presidential flashbacks with one of my favorite images sent in by Tom. I love that you can see the history of the organization in ONE image and so many of the people captured in this snapshot are still so active in EACE. It warms my heart to see the longevity of this organization and the friendships forged.

EACE picture - BeckyBecky Weir: 2004-2005
University of Maryland

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    My first was EACE’s first in Danvers, MA. I’m not sure if any of the other Past Presidents can say that they attended all of the EACE conferences that have been held these past 19 years, but I can. I plan to attend number 20 in Niagara Falls, too!
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    • Looking back, a major accomplishment during my presidency (2004-2005) was having the annual conference in August. That was the year NACE shifted to an annual meeting format from its every three year model, and EACE experimented with an August date and a site near New York City (Westchester, NY). The conference theme “INVEST 2005” (Innovation – Networking – Value – Excellence – Strategies – Training) would be as appropriate today as it was back then. Not only did we successfully increase employer membership numbers that year, we also had a strong employer focus during the annual conference itself. Starting with a one-day program option targeted for employers, a keynote panel of human resource executives, multiple site visits including Bloomberg, the New York Stock Exchange and TVI Actors Studio, and then concluding the conference with Kwame Jackson, “The Apprentice,” attendees had opportunities to invest. We capitalized on the location for fun, too. Some attendees went to a Yankees game while others saw “The Producers” on Broadway, and all of us enjoyed being entertained by a steel drum band. Of note, a number of EACE leaders emerged from committee roles they served in that year, including our current president, Walter Tarver III, who was the site liaison for the August conference.
    • A first during that year was the inaugural use by our association of the “webinar” format for professional development programs. (It seems hard to believe that there was a time when this popular methodology did not exist.) Other technology-based developments included online membership registration for new members, an online process for award nominations and the redesign of the EACE website.
    • Throughout my involvement, I have found that a major strength of EACE is that it provides opportunities to stay connected with colleagues and current issues in the field, to network and share best practices and benchmarking information and to learn from leaders in our profession. Serving as President was an honor and privilege that I’ll always cherish.

Adam Forbes lowres_Nov2012 (1)Adam Forbes: 2006-2007
Honeywell

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    Bryn Mawr & Haverford College – 1997
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    During my presidency, we took on the task of re-evaluating the board structure and annual conference model. IN both cases, we had two committees, which brought forward proposals, which were then adopted by the association. The board had positions re-aligned to best support the future direction of EACE at the time, and the conference model, focused on more disciplined professional development and learning, while still preserving the social/networking benefits the conference brings.
timTar

From Tom: “Here is one of my favorite pictures.  It is often said ‘it takes a village.’  Well, here is a community of familiar faces; all who share in their friendship and work for EACE. “

Tom Tarantelli: 2007-2008
Retired, [Formerly] RPI

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    Seven Springs, PA. I won’t tell you how many years ago that was but many of the first time attendees that year served on committees and the Board with me. We taught each other. We supported each other. We became life long friends.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    There are many proud moments. I had the honor of attending the Conference last year in Philadelphia. I met so many young, talented professionals representing the field and EACE. I am immensely proud of how far EACE has developed and how brilliant the future looks. You all are my proudest moment!

Past Presidents Flashback: 2002 – 2004

I hope you have enjoyed our flashbacks so far. I know it’s been great seeing how much EACE has grown in the past 20 years – and who was integral in that progress. Our next two presidents served from 2002 – 2004.

Sam Ratcliffe 01-13 (4)R. Samuel Ratcliffe, Ph.D.: 2002 – 2003
[Formerly] Virginia Military Institute

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    My first EACE conference was at Tarrytown NY in 1997 and my first MAPA conference was in 1983 at Seven Springs PA.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    A couple of items from my presidency:

    • Transition of the EACE administrative support model from an administrative director to an association management organization.
    • As member of multi-association presidents’ roundtable had key role in regional association cooperative initiative that eventually led to merger of six regional associations into the four current regional associations, among other collaborative opportunities.
    • Developed a technology strategic plan for EACE

Bonus: Catch up with this past president by attending Sam’s Pre-Conference workshop “Shaping Your Center’s Success Story,” register here.

marianneMarianne Tramelli: 2003 – 2004
Columbia University

  1. Where was your first EACE conference?
    My first EACE conference was back in 1985 at The American Great Gorge in New Jersey.
  2. What is your proudest EACE moment?
    Being honored to serve as President of EACE from 2003-2004. Also, co-chairing the first EACE conference in 1997 that celebrated the union of ECPO and MAACE into EACE.

Did you know Niagara Falls is only 25 minutes away from Buffalo Niagara International Airport (BUF)? It’s easier to get to than you might think so I hope you’ve registered to attend.

If not I will leave you with a fun fact to help entice you…

Niagara Falls State Park is the oldest state park in the U.S. Established in 1885 as the Niagara Reservation, it was the first of several such reservations that eventually became the cornerstones to the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.

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