Region 8 2014 Conference Recap!

NACADA BANNER Over the past few weeks we have all had a moment to breathe following an amazing Region 8 conference. I can’t believe it has been almost a month. First, as we begin our recap, let’s take a moment to thank our Conference Chair Nadia Williams! Nadia put in a ton of work organizing this wonderful conference that we all enjoyed in Vancouver B.C. Every year, the Region 8 conference rotates on and off the I-5 corridor. This year, being in Vancouver, we saw a lot of people make that drive straight up I-5 (myself included). After the border crossing, we it was a straight shot for many of our members. How many members attended this conference you ask…well I have the answer! We had 412 NACADA members attend this conference! 412!!!

I would next like to recognize our outgoing Region 8 Chair, Sally Garner. This will be her last conference as Region Chair. In October, Nicole Kent will become our new Region Chair and she will be our chair during the planning of the 2015 Region 8 Conference in Coeur d’alene, Idaho and our 2016 conference in Seattle, Washington. She will also oversee the site visits/section/planning for our 2017 conference somewhere in Montana. Our next Conference Chair Andrew Brewick is very excited for Coeur d’alene and we will talk more about that conference soon!

I would next like to thank our keynote speakers Joanne Damminger, NACADA President and Matt Hill for their wonderful opening and closing keynotes.

Last, but certainly not least, we need to thank the NACADA Executive Office rep, Jennifer Joslin for returning to her Region 8 stomping grounds! If there is one thing Jennifer knows, it is that 8 is great!


On Thursday night, the conference officially kicked off with a welcome reception at the Renaissance Hotel in their Vista Lounge. This 360 view of Vancouver was the perfect place for everyone to mingle and eat from the make your own sundae bar.

After a wonderful evening, which included door prizes, drinks and desserts…it was time for a much needed rest, as many of our members traveled much of the day to join us Thursday night.
Friday morning got off with a bang! The new member orientation is a great opportunity for new NACADA members to talk with the Region 8 leadership and also with other new members. This year was no exception! We had over 100 new NACADA members join us for a wonderful talk from Joanne Damminger, Jennifer Joslin, Karen Sullivan-Vance (NACADA Board Rep), Sally Garner, and much of the Region 8 Steering Committee.

After two more hour sessions, with some great options to choose from, it was time for lunch!

The buffet was delicious, but just as good was the Keynote Address from Joanne Damminger. Her talk entitled “Career frameworks: Putting the pieces together for advising professionals and students.” focused on integrating career development into our conversations with students and thinking about career tools with our own professional development.

Following Joanne, we got to give away awards, recognizing individuals who earned our respect within Region 8. The following is a list of the award winners:

1465287_792406833708_1148884018_nRegion 8 Excellence in Advising – New Advisor Award
Denise Malloy, Montana State University
• Alicia Petersen, Washington State University

Region 8 Excellence in Advising – New Advisor Certificate of Merit
Crystal Coleman, University of Oregon

Region 8 Excellence in Advising – Professional Academic Advisor Award
Teri Duever, Oregon State University

Region 8 Excellence in Advising – Professional Academic Advisor Certificate of Merit
Kristine Roby, University of Idaho 

Region 8 Excellence in Advising – Faculty Academic Advisor Award
Dr. Pingchao Zhu, University of Idaho

Region 8 Excellence in Advising – Faculty Academic Advisor Certificate of Merit
Dr. Patrick Carter, Washington State University

Region 8 Excellence in Advising – Advising Administrator Award
Jason White, Central Washington University

We then had an afternoon of great sessions including our Best in Region winner: Advising Students on Developing Resiliency as a Strategy for Academic Success. Kerry Thomas & Nova Schauss, Oregon State University. You can view their presentation here!1899894_792406544288_50622068_n

After some dinner groups went out and explored Vancouver, it was time to get back at it on Saturday morning! After some final sessions, which again were awesome, we had to wrap it all up. Matt Hill, the co-founder of Run For One Planet and a motivational speaker gave an inspiring closing keynote on the power of heroes, and how we as advisors can be heroes to our students.
We got to hear a few words from our Conference Chair Nadia Williams, and our Region Chair Sally Garner. We then closed it out by opening the 2015 conference. Andrew detailed the upcoming conference in Coeur d’alene, Idaho and put out a call for volunteers. That call can be found here!

At this point we had to close out the conference and go back to the real world. The conference was excellent, and it just shows us how strong our region is. We can put together amazing conference after amazing conference, with strong attendance and great presentations. I have no doubt that Coeur d’alene will follow that pattern. See you all in Idaho 2015!


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