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Five Minutes with ACHE

  • September 11, 2015 12:15 PM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    I love flowers because, like people, each one is a little different with its own special characteristics. And, like people, some flowers are special. The special ones can bend in the wind and then rise up again. They quietly stand out in some unexplainable way and seem to be supporting the other flowers all the time. They make all the other flowers around them seem prettier and bolder and stronger and more special. They are the ones that florists seek to complete bouquets as they look for that one final, finishing, special touch that will take the bouquet from good and past great to excellent. Not so much to be the star or centerpiece, but in many ways the one part of the whole that will make it all go together and then hold it all together. Or they are the flower that makes the others look better or just seem to be in their place because that last one – the one that doesn’t want to be or need to be in the spotlight – is there.

    Charlee LanisMy friend Charlee Lanis was one of those special flowers of which the florist wishes they had a never ending supply. She passed away on Sunday after just over a year of battling cancer. But, despite the cancer, she stood tall and was strong and held things together until the greatest florist of all decided he needed her for, no doubt, a very special bouquet.

    In 1998 Charlee joined her husband Tom as an ECU employee. He is a professor in the Stonecipher School of Business and her very fitting job title was simply, “Coordinator, Community Education Program.” And man was she ever a coordinator. An award winning and nationally, state and locally recognized coordinator. Her “coordinations” were recognized time and time again as being or being among the best of the best of the best. She could and did coordinate just about any and every kind of workshop, seminar, continuing education event, class or anything else anyone could come up with in her time at ECU.

    While she was employed as a coordinator she was also a volunteer leader in a number of campus, state and national efforts, activities and organizations. If something needed to be done or someone needed to step up she never hesitated to take the lead or, if the situation better called for it, to be a valuable and tireless helper.

    More than anything else Charlee Lanis was a wonderful wife, mother and grandmother. Our hearts are heavy for and our prayers go out to husband Tom; daughters Jordi and Cristin; son Alex; little grandson Kason and son-in-laws Bret and Hugh. We know your lives will never be the same, but we also know you – her family - were her life and greatest joy. No doubt little Kason will get to know his grandmother well through all your stories and memories of one of the most special flowers God ever made.

    I, and everyone everywhere, loved to work with Charlee. It seemed like there was no obstacle she couldn’t get around or anything she couldn’t find or make happen. And she always did this with a big smile and gentle voice and a heart that you knew thrived on a love of helping others. There was never a complaint or hint of pessimism or doubt. When you worked with Charlee she made you believe anything was possible and always took you and your ideas, hopes, dreams and plans to never imagined heights.

    She always put everything she had into everything she did with the goal of making whatever it was in which she was involved the best it could possibly be. Whether it was a workshop, program, meeting, organization, fundraiser, party, brochure, flyer or anything else, if she was involved she was the first one there and the last to leave. It didn’t matter if the event was early or late, a weekday or a weekend, on campus or anywhere else the doors were always open early and everything else was always ready.

    The sad, but wonderful, part is that she made it look so simple that she was, in my opinion, vastly under appreciated. No one saw the emails, phone calls, visits, negotiating, early morning and late nights it took to make things all come together. And in the end, usually at the back or side of the room, was Charlee. And at the front would be someone like me welcoming the crowd and basking in the glory of what was about to be a wonderful event. Anytime I was in a spotlight she made shine – even though I knew she didn’t want or expect it – I always had it in my notes to, before she could slowly and quietly disappear as she was prone to do, say thank you to her and to let all the others benefiting from her efforts recognize and thank her. More than once I got excited and didn’t follow my notes and more than once she slipped away before I could.

    And so, for those times I didn’t say it, let me say it now. Thank you Charlee Lanis for all you did for me and for all of us. You were a special friend and special flower to all who knew you and you won’t be soon forgotten.

    Patrick D. “Pat” Fountain, DBA
    Boswell Professor of Business Administration and Proud to be the ENACTUS Sam Walton Fellow
    East Central University

  • September 09, 2015 5:07 PM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    Regis M. GilmanDear Friends,

    Our Annual Conference & Meeting of the Association for Continuing Higher Education will be here in just two short months.  The visioning, the planning, the connections within and among regions, committees, colleagues, and teams are bringing together one of the finest conferences I have seen in all the years I’ve been a member of this great body.  And there is one reason for that: You! The members are the heart of ACHE.

    I’m excited to announce that our cadre of keynote speakers and panelists has been finalized. They are all distinguished thought leaders who bring focused tips and tools to practitioners who make daily strategic connections, change lives, and demonstrate successes. From an expert in ‘encore learning’ – Barbara Vacarr – to the distinguished Christie Vilsack of the U.S. Agency for International Development; from a research expert at the Education Advisory Board – Chris Miller – to a panel of CRM, marketing, and research professionals… there is a plethora of knowledge and inspiration on awaiting you in St. Louis this November. Please visit our Program Details page for more information on our speakers. 

    Also, have you shared with your colleagues the depth and breadth of the conference concurrents and workshops?  I encourage you to introduce to colleagues both new and long-standing the ways in which ACHE members who present at and attend the Annual Conference demonstrate and share how we can all do what we need to do better in these challenging times. 

    And, I can hardly wait to share the stories from our award winners this year! I recently had the pleasure of corresponding with this year's awardees.  You'll get to meet them during our Annual Luncheon on Tuesday, November 10, and learn how they are changing lives through the work they do every day. They are wonderful inspirations for each of us.  

    ACHE is the place where I find engaging professional and personal development, where I invigorate my energies and affirm my commitment to my field, my campus, my students, and my community. I know you will too. Keep checking ACHE’s Facebook page or our LinkedIn Group page for updates.  

    I can hardly wait to see you in St. Louis!

    Regis M. Gilman

    Regis M. Gilman
    ACHE President, 2015

  • August 31, 2015 3:06 PM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    For many of us, August is a time of both endings and beginnings. The sadness that comes with the end of the summer break gives way to a new semester, new students, and possibly new colleagues. Change is definitely in the air. And this August, change is once again upon us at the ACHE Home Office. Our home office Operations Associate and Graduate Assistant, Vyacheslav “Stan” Khrapak, recently moved to Colorado, where he has accepted a position with Colorado State University – Global Campus as an enrollment counselor.

    Stan joined us in May 2013 as our graduate assistant while enrolled at the University of Oklahoma’s Master of Education program with an emphasis in Administration. His dedication to the field of adult continuing higher education meant that he has been a critical part of our success over the last two years. While he’s been with us, he’s assisted with writing the association’s newsletters, supporting our national conference, overhauling the national website, managing our financial and administrative databases, and expanding ACHE’s outreach substantially through various social media outlets.

    Stan also leveraged his experiences to publish a number of articles relevant to both his involvement with ACHE and his graduate work:

    Along with his new professional duties at CSU, Stan plans to continue to serve as Managing Editor of the Journal of Thought, a refereed biannual publication devoted to the reflective examination of educational issues and problems from the perspective of diverse disciplines. The journal welcomes scholars whose work represents varied viewpoints, methodologies, disciplines, cultures, and nationalities as it seeks to treat the most comprehensive issues and problems confronting education throughout the world.

    Additionally, Stan will continue his work as Senior Director of the Garden Your Own Growth program, a nonprofit endeavor which establishes gardens at K-12 schools. As Senior Director, Stan supervises undergraduate university interns and raises funds for programming which allows elementary, middle, and high school students to have experiential learning opportunities in sustainability, biology, and engineering. 

  • August 24, 2015 3:56 PM | Anonymous

    ACHE's Grants & Scholarships Program serves the an important purpose: encouraging research and educational attainment in the field of adult and continuing higher education by supporting graduate students studying in this area. To do this, we need your help! Each year, we offer grants and scholarships aimed at promoting new knowledge, student success, and innovative practices, and we do this through our annual Fundraising Drive that takes place during our Annual Conference & Meetings. 

    This year, however, we wanted to do more. To this end, our fundraising committee has organized a pre-conference donation drive so that we can offer more awards to more students in 2016. As a thank you for helping to support our efforts, for each $5 you donate, you will receive one ticket to enter a drawing for a $500 gift card. 

    What could you do with $500?

    You can donate online now; it's quick and easy! The winner of the gift card will be announced during the Closing Ceremony at the Annual Conference & Meeting on Wednesday, November 11, 2015. The winner need not be present.

    Additionally, the largest donor to our 2015 Fundraising Drive will receive an engraved trophy, illustrating invaluable support for adult and continuing education students and programs throughout the United States and Canada. 

    All proceeds go to to fund our Grants and Scholarships. View the Grants and Scholarships page for more details. Additionally, ACHE is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization and all donations are tax deductible

    Donate Today!

  • August 17, 2015 5:52 PM | Anonymous

    Join us at the ACHE 2015 Annual Conference and Meeting in St. Louis, Missouri this November and experience an exciting and informative concurrent session from Dr. Marc Wilson, Southern New Hampshire University. This session is appropriate for faculty who teach online courses and administrators who oversee and/or develop online programs and are interested in discussing what makes for successful online teaching. This session will examine the role of the faculty member in online instruction, not the course design process.

    Conference Presenter 

    Presenter: Marc Wilson, Director of Accreditation and Program Review for the College of Online and Continuing Education at Southern New Hampshire University

    Bio: Dr. Marc Wilson has been actively involved with higher education for over 30 years in a variety of roles including adjunct instructor, full-time professor, director of counseling, academic dean and department chair. He is currently the Director of Accreditation and Program Review for the College of Online and Continuing Education at Southern New Hampshire University where he previously served as an Assistant Dean. He is a past Chairperson of New England Division of the Association for Continuing Higher Education. His interests include adult student retention, general education, curriculum and student assessment, regional accreditation and faculty development. He has given workshops, invited addresses and keynote presentations on a variety of topics at regional and national academic conferences throughout the country.

    Assessing Online Faculty Effectiveness: The Development and Validation of a Rubric

    Higher education in general and online education in particular are under increasing pressure to demonstrate their efficacy. Despite the acknowledged importance of the role of the faculty in student success, little empirical work has been published regarding the assessment of online faculty performance. After a brief review of the relevant literature, this session will present an overview of the process of developing and validating a rubric for the assessment of online faculty performance in use at the College of Online and Continuing Education at Southern New Hampshire University. A discussion of the relationship between faculty performance and student success will follow.

    ACHE Conference Presentation Details: 

    Session Title: Assessing Online Faculty Effectiveness: The Development and Validation of a Rubric
    Time: Monday, Nov 9 2015, 3:00–4:00 pm

    To find more exhilarating conference presentations which are relevant to you, view our conference schedule here

    Each year, ACHE conference presenters find innovative ways to connect with their audience prior to the conference. Leading up to the event, presenters will share their outlooks on various continuing education topics by writing blog entries in order to provide informative insights about their presentations and the field. This blog series allows our presenters and audience members to establish a dialog prior to the conference. Please feel free to comment on this blog post to start an interactive discussion among presenters, audience members, and interested parties.

  • August 10, 2015 1:13 PM | Anonymous

    Are you a key member of an enrollment, admissions, or student support services team at your higher education institution or organization?  "Customer Service at the Collegiate Level" presented by Ann Merrifield at the ACHE 2015 Annual Conference and Meeting will provide you with the opportunity to discover best practices when providing excellent customer service to students. What's more, you'll gain insights on ways to improve interdepartmental collaboration and client support services. Here is an exclusive inside look at Ann's upcoming presentation. 

    Conference Presenter 

    Presenter: Ann Merrifield, Director of Business Development, Columbia College

    Bio: Ann Merrifield has over 24 years of workforce development and teaching experience, a Master’s degree in Education with a concentration in Curriculum Development and Instruction, and a BS in Education with a concentration in Special Education.  One of Ann’s top strengths is her Positivity, which she believes is what gets her through just about everything.  She was born and raised in Iowa, which explains her sense of humor.

    Customer Service at the Collegiate Level

    How many workshops on customer service have you attended in your lifetime? More than one, for sure!!  You probably know the importance of “Giving them the Pickle” and “Making their Day”.   And how often do you hear phrases such as “the customer is always right” and “going above and beyond”?   In the collegiate setting, providing excellent customer service is more than just “keeping the students happy”.  It’s having streamlined processes in place so that our students receive timely responses to their questions.  It’s having a well-trained staff in order to meet students’ needs.  It’s creating a stress-free enrollment process.  And it’s not just about the students – parents, other departments, even coworkers are customer, too.  So on top of making sure your processes work, you also need to think about methods and styles of communicating with the myriad of customers that walk through your gates.  In the workshop “Customer Service at the Collegiate Level”, you will have opportunities to discuss and process the meaning of customer service in the academic setting and share strategies for enhancing the level of customer service you provide.

    ACHE Conference Presentation Details: 

    Session Title: Customer Service at the Collegiate Level
    Time: Tue Nov 10 2015, 2:15pm–3:15pm, Session 5 

    To find more exhilarating conference presentations which are relevant to you, view our conference schedule here

    Each year, ACHE conference presenters find innovative ways to connect with their audience prior to the conference. Leading up to the event, presenters will share their outlooks on various continuing education topics by writing blog entries in order to provide informative insights about their presentations and the field. This blog series allows our presenters and audience members to establish a dialog prior to the conference. Please feel free to comment on this blog post to start an interactive discussion among presenters, audience members, and interested parties.

  • August 05, 2015 1:56 PM | Anonymous

    Are you involved in managing non-credit programming? Whether you're a program director, dean, or a professional staff member, you'll find valuable takeaways during the roundtable session titled "Common Issues in Noncredit Programming."  Presenter Russ O'Neill will provide you with the opportunity to open a dialog with an industry leader who has over five decades worth of experience in higher education.

    Conference Presenter 

    Presenter: Russ O'Neill, World Instructor Training Schools

    Bio: Russ O’Neill retired in 2013 after spending 50 years in education.  After being a teacher and assistant principal at the secondary level, the second half of his career was spent in higher education.  He served as an administrator of several proprietary institutions before becoming director of continuing education at The University of Akron Wayne College and Stark State College in Ohio.  Currently, Russ is a director of partnership development for World Instructor Training Schools (W.I.T.S.).

    Common Issues in Noncredit Programming

    Planning noncredit courses and programs involves many unique challenges, issues and concerns.  For example, how do you determine course fees in a way that is beneficial for both students and institution?  What discounts might you want to consider?  Should you always use regular faculty for instructors, or is there a value in sometimes going outside the institution?  Determining instructor compensation can also be a challenge.  Sometimes there are organizational barriers that often create clashes between credit and noncredit programming.  It is important to find ways to overcome those barriers.  Partnerships and collaboration with outside organizations and individuals can often be beneficial to noncredit programs and can help you develop new courses.  There are many professional fields that require continuing education hours for license or credential renewal.  Is your college or university taking advantage of the many arenas where CE offerings can add to both the reputation and the bottom line of your unit?  This roundtable discussion will offer attendees the opportunity to share these and other challenges and successes and hear what others have done.  This is not a theoretical discussion.  You should go away with at least a few practical ideas to implement when you get back to the office.

    ACHE Conference Presentation Details: 

    Session Title: Common Issues in Noncredit Programming
    Time: Tue Nov 10 2015, 2:15pm–3:15pm, Session 5 

    Session Description
    Whether it's planning noncredit courses or noncredit programs, the issues and concerns are the same. This roundtable session will cover topics such as pricing, finding instructors and determining salaries, the offering of discounts, benefits of partnerships and collaborations, overcoming organizational barriers, and discovering and developing new courses. Come hear what others are doing and share your challenges and successes as well.

    To find more exhilarating conference presentations which are relevant to you, view our conference schedule here

    Each year, ACHE conference presenters find innovative ways to connect with their audience prior to the conference. Leading up to the event, presenters will share their outlooks on various continuing education topics by writing blog entries in order to provide informative insights about their presentations and the field. This blog series allows our presenters and audience members to establish a dialog prior to the conference. Please feel free to comment on this blog post to start an interactive discussion among presenters, audience members, and interested parties.

  • August 03, 2015 6:02 PM | Anonymous

    Regis GilmanDear Colleagues, 

    Both as President of ACHE and Dean of the School of Continuing Education at Eastern Illinois University, I’m sensitive to the costs associated with conferences and travel, particularly in lean budgetary environments. In considering how we build the conference agenda, we strive to take into account your needs as CE and distance learning staff. We’ve asked ourselves: How will the content impact the mastery of your current skillset? How will it further increase value by allowing you to add or gain new skills to remain competitive in your field? Take a look at this three step guide to help you and your boss legitimize your trip to ACHE 2015 in St. Louis.

    1. Select Your Perfect Agenda

    First, I encourage you to choose the most appropriate agenda for your institution or organization. With over 50 sessions from leaders in the field of continuing education, we offer an array of excellent professional development presentations. Our sessions focus on: 

    • Credit Programming
    • Non-Credit Programming
    • Online Programming
    • Post-Traditional Students
    • Student/Client Support Services
    • Marketing / Social Marketing
    • Budget and Finance
    • Leadership 
    • Workforce Development
    • Military Education
    • Degree Completion
    • Corporate Training
    • Prior Learning Assessment
    • Competency Based Education 

    To find conference sessions that relate directly to you and your organization, visit our visit our schedule page to see our presentations in full detail. – View Full Schedule Here

    2. Anticipate to Strengthen Your Networks

    Second, I’d like to emphasize that networking and learning from colleagues is at the heart of ACHE. You will meet professionals from across the field who share your passion for continuing higher education. You’ll be able to strengthen existing relationships and make new connections during our concurrent sessions, workshops, roundtables, dinners, outings, and ceremonies. Pre-conference networking is critical as well. We want each conference attendee to be making connections prior to the conference using ACHE’s Twitter, Facebook Group,  or LinkedIn Group page as a great way to connect with colleagues new and old to then meet in person at the Conference in St. Louis.  Remember to use our official conference hashtag - #ACHESTL

    3. Plan to Make Your Trip Cost Efficient 

    Third, note that additional cost savings come from Early Registrations, multiple registrations for the same institution, and savings through breaks and meals provided as part of the conference.  You’ll find ACHE always a great value.  Find out more about our conference location - the beautiful Saint Louis Union Station Hotel - travel details, and links to registration on our conference website. – View Travel Details and Registration Links 

    Three more months and the conference will be here. Keep checking the website for updates on keynotes, exhibitors, special events, etc.  I can hardly wait to see you again. 

    Regis M. Gilman

    Regis M. Gilman
    2015 President, ACHE
  • July 27, 2015 2:07 PM | Anonymous

    Leaders like you help drive the ACHE Annual Conference and Meeting. Volunteers act as session presiders, information desk assistants, and information technology consultants. This year, we need your support in St. Louis, Missouri at the 77th ACHE Annual Conference and Meeting. In order to advocate for support at our upcoming conference, we thought we would share with you some memories from previous conferences, illustrating the valued role of our volunteers. 

    volunteer 1

    Volunteers from various higher education  institutions help run the registration desk at ACHE 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

    Volunteers 2

    Help desk volunteers answer questions, direct people, and keep track of operations. IT volunteers assist with projectors, communications, and other technical issues at the conference. 

    volunteer 3

    Our volunteers come from all corners of the United States and Canada. They are integral to the success of the conference. 

    Please join us at our upcoming Annual Conference and Meeting in St. Louis Missouri on November 9th - 11th and volunteer. We currently need assistance in the following positions:

    "Proceedings" Editor

    The Proceedings of the Annual Conference & Meeting of ACHE is both a complete report of the Annual Conference and an Annual Report of the Association's activities over the preceding year. This is a critical position with ACHE, and compensation is provided. | Learn more about this position and apply...

    Day Chair - Wednesday, November 11th

    Day Chairs are assigned one day of the conference for which they are then responsible for coordinating the day’s session presenters and presiders regarding presentation needs and registration. During the conference, Day Chairs give announcements at the end of each general session and lunch, such as changes to the schedule. | Learn more about Day Chair duties and sign up...

    Other On-site Volunteer Opportunities

    • Presider for concurrent session/workshop
    • On-site registration & information desk
    • Signage - change signs for sessions
    • Information Technology (IT) support

    Thanks again for your support and considerations and we look forward to seeing you at the 2015 Conference in St. Louis. #ACHESTL
  • July 20, 2015 3:09 PM | Anonymous
    A recent survey of the ACHE membership found that members consider networking and connection making to be among the greatest benefits of ACHE Membership. The opportunity to meet, interact, and exchange ideas with other professionals with common interests is central to success in the field of continuing education. Accordingly, ACHE recognizes that social media networking is continuously proving to be a great tool for establishing critical connections that drive professional growth and inter-connectivity. 

    This year's ACHE Annual Conference and Meeting in St. Louis, Missouri is featuring relevant and informative presentations on social media networking, including a roundtable discussion which will provide detailed insights on how to utilize social media to market your programs, make meaningful connections with your target audience, and partner with others across your institution and community for collaborative campaigns. 

    Better Together: Connecting with Your Audience through Social Media
    Tue Nov 10 2015, 2:15pm–3:15pm

    Cheryl Rodewig, Kennesaw State University, College of Continuing and Professional Education

    Brief Bio:
    Cheryl Rodewig has worked with social media personally and professionally for nearly a decade, developing creative content ranging from blogs to videos. Before joining the College of Continuing and Professional Education as their social media specialist, she ran her own business offering social media consultation, design and management. Whether your audience is clients and prospective customers or just family and friends, she believes social media at its core is about sharing stories.

    View more exciting ACHE 2015 Conference Presentations and justify your trip to St. Louis!

    Official Conference Hashtag: #ACHESTL

    In addition, ACHE has a social media based webinar scheduled for July 23rd, 2015.

    ACHE Summer Webinar Series

    Using Social Media Tools to Help Adult Students Learn and be Successful


    • ACHE - Non-Member – $30.00 (USD)
    • ACHE Member – Free

      Register Now!

    Webinar description:

    Social media is not a new topic, but has becoming an increasingly important part of the academic landscape…and not just for marketing classes.  Regardless of the platform, the integration of social media into courses can improve instructor/student communication, enhance course quality and help elevate learning to the next level.  This session will discuss how the most common social media platforms can be utilized in courses, whether online or face to face, and demonstrate some of the concrete benefits of its integration.  Attendees will leave with a greater understanding of the opportunities social media presents to educators and concrete strategies they can implement in their departments and courses.


    Meleena Eaton

    Meleena Eaton
    Faculty lead, College of Online and Continuing Education
    Southern New Hampshire University

    Meleena Eaton has been working in marketing for nearly 20 years and teaching in higher education for over 10.  She is currently a full time faculty member in the marketing department at Southern New Hampshire University.  She has been working with social media since its formative years and has seen the benefits of its use in business and in academia.

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