The Conference Program Committee is now accepting presentation proposals for the 2020 NIRSA Annual Conference and Campus Rec & Wellness Expo taking place in Phoenix, Arizona from April 18–21!

From engaging lectures to interactive presentations and moderated panels to informal conversations, NIRSA 2020 will offer attendees a wide array of learning methods and opportunities throughout the four-day conference.

New organization of conference sessions

The Program Committee has worked hard to better organize our many educational opportunities to assist members with best identifying sessions that meet both what and how they want to learn.

In 2020, members will see sessions grouped as Presentations, Conversations, or Association Engagement. The Presentations group includes our traditional 60- and 90-minute general education sessions along with preconference workshops, research hour and poster presentations, and new Showcase sessions.

In NIRSA Conversations, members will find panel discussions, town hall meetings, roundtables, new Community Connection sessions, and the Student Lounge. And in Association Engagement, conference attendees will see the Annual Meeting of Members, Student and Regional Member Network Connection meetings, and other sessions from NIRSA leadership groups including the Assembly and the Series.

2020 focus areas & new showcase sessions

The Program Committee is seeking proposals that target many different learning levels including foundational concepts, practical applications, and strategic efforts. General education sessions and panel discussions will support NIRSA’s eight core competencies across sixteen broad topic areas.

Additionally, based on current trends in collegiate recreation and the NIRSA 2018-2021 Strategic Plan, the NIRSA 2020 Program Committee has identified four focus areas to encourage additional proposals. The Committee seeks sessions that:

  • Empower members to create successful campus partnerships to provide programs and services that enhance student success
  • Facilitate the development of innovative programs, services, and spaces that support underrepresented groups
  • Enable members to effectively communicate the impact of campus recreation to their own stakeholders on campus and beyond
  • Present strategies that infuse health and wellbeing practices into various recreational programs and services

The new Showcase session format will feature ten-minute presentations focused on a single idea, initiative, or promising practice that includes practical tips to help members learn how to implement the concept on their campuses. Ten different topic areas are available for Showcase session submissions from New Student Welcome Events to Innovations in Revenue Generation. And the Program Committee has simplified the proposal form for Showcase sessions keeping with the theme “10 minutes to propose, 10 minutes to present.”

First look reviews & new submitter resources

New this year, submitters can receive preliminary feedback from the Program Committee in order to modify their proposals prior to finalizing their submission. Any general education, showcase, and panel discussion proposals submitted by the new first look deadline on Monday, June 17 will be reviewed by the Program Committee to determine if any aspects of the submission are unclear. Submitters will receive comments within seven to ten days and may use the remaining weeks prior to the final proposal deadline of Monday, July 15 to enhance their submissions.

To assist members with their submissions, new web resources are now available including a comprehensive presentation proposal guide, quick checklists for each proposal type, and samples of top-rated sessions from previous conferences.

NIRSA 2020 Presenter Resources

Contribute leadership & ideas to conversation sessions

The Program Committee is accepting volunteers and suggestions for two other session types: Roundtables and the new Community Connection conversation sessions. The Program Committee will select 12 roundtable topics based on previous years’ attendance and current hot topics. Then, through this fall, the Committee will be recruiting members who are interested in assisting with leading various aspects of each roundtable session.

To expand the opportunities to connect and converse with fellow NIRSA members during the conference, the Program Committee is excited to introduce the new Community Connection session format. These sessions are designed to offer spaces for members to gather to discuss issues around more focused topic areas or by constituent group. Over the next several months, the Program Committee will accept suggestions for session topics then give members the opportunity to vote on their favorite topics to be included in the conference schedule.

Volunteer to lead a roundtable or suggest a topic for a Community Connection session online now!

Propose a session today

The online proposal submission system is open now through Monday, July 15 for four session types: general education, showcase, panel discussion, and preconference workshop proposals. Other session types will be available for member proposals in the coming weeks, including fitness form sessions, poster presentations, research hour sessions, and Career Services Center coaching sessions.

Visit the NIRSA 2020 website to learn more about the conference, view resources, and submit your proposal today!

  • For more information NIRSA Director of Professional Development Kristen Gleason.
Associate Director of Campus Recreation at Florida State University | 2020 Annual Conference Program Chair | NIRSA Profile

David Peters is currently the Associate Director of Campus Recreation at Florida State University. He currently serves as the Voice of the NIRSA Championship Series.