2017 GAP YEAR CONFERENCE


Gap Year Conference - American Gap Association, Taylor the Gap, Kevin Hermann Copywriting

The conference will be held in advance of, and in partnership with, the IECA Spring conference and is slated to have some exciting opportunities. The 2016 conference doubled our attendees over the previous year in Baltimore, and we expect to do the same in Denver, limiting the number to 300 attendees. We will have some incredibly valuable discussion and presentations on key topics, some great networking, an experiential component, and we are planning a large Gap Year Fair on May 9th. As well, we are proud to reprise the highly successful "Gap n Go" all-day speed dating option (for an additional fee) to meet with registered IECA Members in a more intimate setting. This promises to be a collaborative and growth-forward event bringing together Colleges that offer and support the Gap Year, Gap Year Providers, Gap Year Partners, and of course, Educational Consultants and Specialists. We are making specific efforts to be inclusive and of value to our College partners this coming year, and look forward to a fantastic event!

Logistics (Hotel, Shipping, etc.):

  • ACCOMMODATION. AGA has negotiated a discounted hotel rate of $169 plus tax. The contracted rate is good until either the room block sells out or until April 12, 2017. Availability and rate cannot be guaranteed once the room block is sold out or after this date. Please follow this link for the discount, or call and mention the Gap Year Conference:
    The Curtis Hotel, a Double Tree hotel by Hilton
    Address: 1405 Curtis Street, Denver, CO 80202
    Phone:(720)889-4713

  • POSTAGE & MAILING. Address incoming packages to:
    Your Name
    Gap Year Conference, May 6, 2017
    Attn: American Gap Association
    C/O Ashleigh Buhr
    The Curtis a Doubletree Hotel by Hilton
    1405 Curtis Street
    Denver, CO. 80202
    Boxes __ of ___ (multiple boxes MUST be numbered)

 

2017 SCHEDULE - updated 12/15/16

Saturday, May 6 - Preconference Day:

To attend either of the preconference events, please email: ethan@americangap.org. The preconference day is limited to 30 attendees in each session so please register early. Attendance at future Accreditation Workshops is required for all Accredited members at least once every third year.

  • 9:00am - 12:00pm: "The Old & Accredited." Time for AGA Accredited and those organizations in operation for longer than 10 years - $60 includes lunch
  • 9:00am - 12:00pm: open for proposals.
  • 12:00pm - 1:00pm: Lunch
  • 1:00pm - 4:00pm: "Accreditation Workshop." For those organizations interested in Accreditation and new to the Standards & Accreditation process - $60 includes lunch
  • 1:00pm - 4:00pm: "Mentorship & Rites of Passage." Facilitated by Randy Russell, this is a deep dive into good mentorship practices and cultivating the power of a Rite of Passage for this age - $60 includes lunch

Sunday, May 7 - Conference Day One:

  • 9:00am - 10:00am: Introduction to the Conference, State of the Field, and New Initiatives
  • 10:15am - 11:30am: Concurrent panel sessions to present some of the best we know
  • 11:30am - 1:00pm: Lunch & networking
  • 1:00pm - 1:15pm: Introduction to 1st round of Discussion Roundtable options
  • 1:15pm - 2:45pm: Concurrent Discussion Roundtables
  • 2:45pm - 3:00pm: Introduction to 2nd round of Discussion Roundtable options
  • 3:00pm - 4:30pm: Concurrent Discussion Roundtables
  • 5:00pm - 6:30pm: End of Day Reception

Monday, May 8 - Conference Day Two:

  • 9:00am - 10:00am: Keynote
  • 10:15am - 11:30am: Concurrent panel sessions to present some of the best we know
  • 11:30am - 1:00pm: Lunch & networking
  • 1:00pm - 1:15pm: Introduction to 1st round of Experientially Focused Roundtable options
  • 1:15pm - 2:45pm: Concurrent Experientially Focused Roundtables
  • 2:45pm - 3:00pm: Introduction to 2nd round of Experientially Focused Roundtable options
  • 3:00pm - 4:30pm: Concurrent Experientially Focused Roundtables
  • 5:00pm - 6:30pm: End of Day Reception

Tuesday, May 9th - GAP N GO & PM Gap Year Fair:

9:00am - 4:00pm: "Gap N Go" opportunity costs an additional $300 for Providers, and $50 for IECs. This is a proven format where organizations have a dedicated 25 minutes with pre-registered IECs to share about their program, develop a personal relationship with program representatives (usually holding some executive role), and for IECs to ask questions. Lunch and drinks will be provided. Depending on space and interest, we are hoping to double the number of represented organizations to 26!

6:30pm - 8:00pm: For all conference Gap Year Providers & Favorable Colleges, we will have a well-structured Gap Year Fair, done in partnership with our local Gap Year Providers - Where There Be Dragons, Youth International, and Kivu Gap Year. The format will feature several short-topic lectures on Security, Financial Aid, College, and other key topics, as well as space to exhibit and have conversations with interested parties. Hosting a fair in May around the end of the year is a new endeavor, but one that coupled with the AP exams immediately prior, we hope will cater to students who may be looking at alternatives to more school.

Wednesday, May 10 - IECA Conference:

  • The IECA Conference officially starts Wednesday with some of the 1,500 attendees.

 

 


Remembering the 2016 Conference

The 2016 Gap Year conference was hosted by the non-profit American Gap Association, in partnership with EnRoute Gap Year Consulting and the Independent Educational Consultants Association. The IECA Spring Conference followed ours and was designed for the Independent Educational Consultant community.

2016 CONFERENCE SCHEDULE

Sunday, May 1:

  • 9:00am - 10:00am: All attendees are welcome. Ethan will give an update on AGA, its committees, and the State of the Field. Karl Haigler, AGA Board Member & Research Committee Chair, will share results of the National Alumni Survey. And we will share information about a new online curricula available to all AGA members called the Impact Abroad Toolkit.
  • 10:15am - 11:30am: Concurrent panel sessions to present some of the best we know in the realm of program security, mental health, and more. The panel sessions are available for any attendee to attend any session.
      1. "Mental Health" - Led by Stephen Barnes and Gary Robinson, Thinking Beyond Borders Gap Year Program
      2. "Ethical Volunteering" - Led by Willy Oppenheim, Omprakash EdGE Gap Year Program
  • 11:30am - 1:00pm: Lunch & networking
  • 1:00pm - 1:15pm: Introduction to Discussion Roundtable options
  • 1:15pm - 2:45pm: Concurrent discussion-centered Roundtables. We will have different tracks for Educational Consultants and Program Providers.
      1. PROVIDERS - "Research Discussion" - current research efforts by programs highlighting methodology and utility
      2. PROVIDERS - "Marketing 1" - best practices in marketing to grow your enrollment
      3. PROVIDERS - "Ethical Media & Outreach" - where responsibility to local communities meets educating students and marketing to enrollment
      4. PROVIDERS - "China Doesn't Gap, But Change Is In The Air" - how to grow your enrollment of students from China
      5. PROVIDERS - "Rites of Passage - what we're really doing" - tying the art of student mentoring to the systems on program
      6. CONSULTANTS - "Interviewing Programs" - an introduction for how to make the most of your time interviewing providers
      7. CONSULTANTS - "Domestic Programs" - the ups, downs, and options for domestic programs
      8. CONSULTANTS - "Insurance" - education on the critical parts of insurance - making sure your students are covered
      9. CONSULTANTS - "Navigating Gap Years with Parents" - it's the hardest part and this is how it's done best
  • 2:45pm - 3:00pm: Introduction to Roundtable options + Coffee
  • 3:00pm - 4:30pm: Roundtables as different tracks for IECs and Program Providers.
      1. PROVIDERS - "Marketing 2" - lead conversion
      2. PROVIDERS - "College Credit & Financial Aid" - the pros, cons, ups and downs and how providers can make this work
      3. PROVIDERS - "Training and Maintaining In-Country Staff" - best practices for ensuring quality carries through to the students
      4. PROVIDERS - "Nonprofit Help Group" - fundraising for your nonprofit including grantwriting efforts
      5. PROVIDERS - "Growing the Field Committee" - download of current committee efforts and discusion for goal setting in next year
      6. CONSULTANTS - "Knowing Which Students are Good Gap Year Candidates" - when to insist on "the conversation" and when to float it
      7. CONSULTANTS - "Gap Year Affordability" - finding the sweet spot in finances and knowing student financial aid options
      8. CONSULTANTS - "Managing Expectations for Gap Year" - popular locations, common outcomes, and regular pitfalls
      9. CONSULTANTS - "Useful Resources for Consultants" - know your tools
  • End of Day Reception - EVERYONE IS INVITED. Co-hosted by Ridge Mountain Academy & GoOverseas.com

Monday, May 2:

  • 9:00am - 10:00am: Keynote Speaker - Rick Weissbourd, Harvard Graduate School of Education, author of Turning the Tide report on making college admissions more human-friendly.
  • 10:15am - 11:30am: Concurrent panel sessions to present some of the best we know. All attendees are welcome to any session this day.
      1. "Effective school outreach" - Led by Marie Schwartz, CEO, TeenLife.com
      2. "Student Panel: What Convinced Me to Take a Gap Year" - Facilitated by Cara Murray & Nathan Scott, Winterline Gap Year Program
  • 11:30am - 1:00pm: Lunch & networking
  • 1:00pm - 1:15pm: Introduction to Discussion Roundtable options
  • 1:15pm - 2:45pm: Concurrent discussion-centered Roundtables. This second day will be SHARED tracks for Educational Consultants and Program Providers.
      1. EVERYONE - "Alcohol and Other Substances on Program" - proactive and reactive methods to address a very complicated issue
      2. EVERYONE - "Risk Management in the Field" - with Bill Frederick of Lodestone, this is a discussion led by the best in the field
      3. EVERYONE - "Research Committee" - current efforts of research in the field and how to contribute
      4. EVERYONE - "Learning Differences on Gap Year" - accommodating students with learning differences
      5. EVERYONE - "What Makes it 'Transformational?'" - what are the antecedents to maximize student growth?
      6. EVERYONE - "Predeparture Preparation" - predeparture is a crucial time to push student growth - what are you and your peers doing?
      7. EVERYONE - "Other" - left intentionally undefined
  • 2:45pm - 3:00pm: Introduction to Roundtable options + Coffee
  • 3:00pm - 4:30pm: Roundtables as SHARED track for IECs and Program Providers.
      1. EVERYONE - "Ethical Volunteering" - a continuation of the ethics in volunteering for a broad range of program types
      2. EVERYONE - "Standards & Accreditation Committee" - download of current committee efforts and discussion for goal setting in next year (what would it take to be an outcomes-defined Standards process?)
      3. EVERYONE - "The Gap Year Admissions Process" - how are different organizations covering their bases with this critical element of the student experience?
      4. EVERYONE - "Using the State Department as a Resource" - Overseas Security Advisory Council, the State Department, their limits, and what can Commonwealth countries avail themselves of?
      5. EVERYONE - "Emerging Adulthood" - understanding the young adult brain and speaking effectively to it
      6. EVERYONE - "Technology on Program" - idealogical and practical considerations of technology use while on program
      7. EVERYONE - "Other" - left intentionally undefined
  • End of Day Reception - EVERYONE IS INVITED. Hosted by TeenLife Media

Tuesday, May 3: GAP N GO & School Visits

9:00am - 4:00pm: "Gap N Go" opportunity that costs an additional $200 for Providers, and $150 for IECs. This is a proven format where organizations have a dedicated 25 minutes with pre-registered IECs to share about their program, develop a personal relationship with program representatives (usually holding some executive role), and for IECs to ask questions. Lunch and drinks will be provided.

  • The current list of Gap N Go Providers are:
    James Bridge - InterExchange, Jake Lewis - Gap at Glen Brook, Richard Nimmo - Blue Ventures Expeditions, Danny Ponce-Taylor - Global Vision International, Eva Vanek - Where There Be Dragons, Delores Fabregas - CIEE, Rebecca Thomas - Pacific Discovery, Sophia Weeks - ARCC Gap Year, Stephen Barnes - Thinking Beyond Borders, Randy Russell - InnerPath Works, Tim Porter-DeVriese - Rustic Pathways, Liz Hesterberg - Cross Cultural Solutions, Jenny Doder - Academic Programs International (API). Note that the waitlist is currently two organizations deep.
  • The current list of Gap N Go IECs are:
    Diane Geller, Jason & Jane Sarouhan, Julie Gross, Lisa Thomas, Betsy Donnelly, Ramona Wessel, Alex Steinert-Evoy, Sandy Storer, Katie Sterns, Lucy Shih, and Katie Garrett.

9:00am - 4:00pm: For providers and attendees NOT attending the Gap N Go event, we will have some loosely structured marketing opportunities with two local schools and unstructured networking opportunities with IECs who arrive early. Please plan on bringing promotional materials for these events. For those wishing to do a school visit, please email Madelaine Eulich to RSVP. The following two schools will be stacked and AGA will reimburse transportation costs for this event.

  • Meridian Academy
    10:15am - 11:00am
    54 Brookside Avenue
    Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
    (617) 277-1118

    Meridian Academy is an independent, diverse, project-based school serving sixth through twelfth graders in the Boston area. The visit to Meridian Academy will be held from 10:15am - 11:00am on Tuesday, May 3. Students in tenth, eleventh, and twelfth grades will be in attendance (roughly 28 students).

  • Buckingham, Browne, & Nichols
    12:40pm - 1:20pm
    80 Gerrys Landing Rd
    Cambridge, MA 02138
    (617) 547-6100

    Buckingham, Browne, & Nichols (or BB&N) is a private day school based in Cambridge and serving pre-K through twelfth graders. The visit to BB&N will be held from 12:40pm - 1:20pm on Tuesday, May 3.

Wednesday, May 4 - May 7: IECA Conference

  • The IECA Conference officially starts Wednesday with some of the 1,500 attendees. Please use your $100 AGA discount code to register and attend the IECA Conference and network with this amazing body of educational consultants and experts.

 

 


2015 Gap Year Conference

Our First Gap Year Conference just concluded hosting some 63 attendees from four continents! What a start and just the beginning of this snowball!

Posted by American Gap Association on May 4-8, 2015