Annual Meeting Workshops


Annual Meeting Workshops

In addition to the seven Pre-Convention Forums, there are over 70 workshops offered during the regular Annual Meeting schedule – all designed to sharpen your leadership skills and expand your leadership capacity. Consider the wide array of issues to be addressed and topics to be covered. These are all designed as part of the Executive Training Program for each of the six chief officer positions of an institution along with those who would like to prepare for these roles of service.


Look through these as you register for Annual Meeting and choose the most relevant workshops for your growth edges and responsibilities.  Admission to workshops will be first for those who sign up through registration. Let’s grow together for the glory of God.

Thursday Morning Workshops:

The Art and Science of Measuring Spirituality

The Art and Science of Measuring Spirituality

Presenter: Todd Hall, Professor of Psychology; Biola University, CA; ABHE Sr. Fellow
Location: Salon 1
Target Audience: Student development & spiritual life officers

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Theory-Driven Assessment of Spiritual Development in Higher Education: Findings and Practical Challenges

Overview: Measuring and nourishing the spiritual development of students is a challenge. That challenge can be addressed, at least in part, by using theoretically-driven validated measures of spirituality. Consider findings from studies using such measures, focusing on the results from a four-year longitudinal study. It will conclude with practical challenges in using spirituality measures for program evaluation.

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — SpiritPulse: New Directions in Assessing Spiritual Development in Higher Education

Overview: This presentation describes the development and use cases of a brief, new spiritual assessment called SpiritPulse. We will cover: 1) how the SpiritPulse addresses practical challenges in assessing students’ spirituality; 2) an overview of the tool including validity results; 3) what we’re learning from national results; and 4) examples of how the SpiritPulse can be used for program evaluation to improve spiritual formation programs.

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A 

Providing Effective Financial Management for Your Institution

Providing Effective Financial Management for Your Institution

Presenter: Jan Haas, Partner; CFO Colleague, PA 
Location: Salon 2
Target Audience: CFO’s

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Financial Management Principles for the Educational Non-Profit

Overview: Astute financial leadership and effective management are core responsibilities for the CFO. So, what are the essential management principles that guide their work? Sharpen your leadership competency with insight from this distinguished veteran CFO including…

  • Seeing the big picture – having the right #’s in focus
  • Keeping your thumb on the financial pulse of the institution – what to watch
  • Ensuring the right processes of checks and balances – sustainability
  • Holding the right people accountable – doing the hard work

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — Oversight & Counsel Regarding Financial Strength & Viability

Overview: Saying that the board and president lean heavily on the CFO for the financial management of the institution is a huge understatement. Both the financial oversight and counsel of the CFO is invaluable to the fulfilling of their fiduciary responsibilities and making prudent decisions.

  • Surveying the oversight responsibilities of the CFO – What are the main points?
  • Effective management of the financial operations – key principles
  • Weighing the numbers for measurement of strength and viability – wisdom
  • Interpreting the financial information to the board, president and executive team – priceless counsel

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A 

Bible-Centered Developmental Leadership

Bible-Centered Developmental Leadership

Presenter: Steve Moore, President, nexleader and Growing Leaders, GA; ABHE Sr. Fellow 
Location: Salon 5
Target Audience: Presidents and other institutional leaders

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Bible-Centered Leadership

Overview: There is a disconnect between the primary motivation for leadership growth and the primary contribution the Bible makes to leadership. That’s why it’s possible to know a lot about the Bible and a lot about leadership without being a Bible-Centered leader. Based on the book, ”The Top 10 Leadership Conversations in the Bible: Practical Insights on Extensive Research of more than 1,000 Biblical Leaders”, we will explore:

  • The definition of Bible-Centered leadership and why it matters
  • The basal elements of leadership interaction and how they informed this research
  • The four Biblical Leadership Eras and what we can learn from them
  • The Equipping Formula as model for the journey of lifelong Bible mastery
  • The unique relationship between spiritual gifts and Bible engagement
  • Implications of Bible-Centered Leadership on training Christian leaders

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A 
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — Developmental Leadership: Becoming the Person Everyone Wants to Work For

Overview: Most people don’t quit their job. They quit their boss. And this can happen long before a person leaves the institution. When it does, everybody loses. Nobody begins a career dreaming about becoming an underachieving boss. But with leadership comes more pressure, more meetings, more responsibility and less time to develop yourself or the people around you. In this session, based on content in the book, ”Grow Toward Your Dreams”, we’ll explore:

  • The foundational commitment of developmental leadership
  • A practical model for stewarding human capital that applies to every level of leadership
  • The 3 domains of developmental leadership – and who’s responsible for what
  • Developmental conversations and the Personal Development S-Curve
  • Developmental team leadership

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A 

Fostering a Spiritually Transformative Campus – What Happens When God Breaks Through?

Fostering a Spiritually Transformative Campus – What Happens When God Breaks Through?

Presenter: Gary Stratton, Dean of Arts & Sciences; Johnson University, TN 
Location: Salon 6
Target Audience: Presidents, academic and other institutional leaders

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — When God Walks on Campus – Lessons Learned

Overview: The history of Christian higher education is replete with examples of when God’s presence was powerfully felt on a campus and the remarkable changes that followed. Walk with a scholar whose passion has focused on spiritual awakenings to discover remarkable insights about these watermark campus events. While we acknowledge the sovereignty of God as work, there are telling prompters that have much to share of how these events came to be including…

  • Examining the correlation between seasons of spiritual awakening and the growth of biblical higher education throughout history
  •  Examining the correlation between seasons of spiritual awakening among Boomers (1970) and Busters (1995) and the explosion of biblical higher education
  • Examining why the lack of spiritual awakening among Millennials is key to understanding the current decline in biblical higher education
  • Examining the vital role leadership plays in these visitations by God and how ABHE leaders must co-labor with the Spirit for spiritual awakening among Generation Z

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — Fostering God Moments for Gen Z Students

Overview: It goes without saying that transformation at its heart, is an act of God. It flows naturally from this – when God is powerfully present, lives are changed. And that’s our passion. What are we learning about how this plays out in the culture and campus community of our Gen Z students?

  • The spiritual/cultural challenge of Gen Z
  • The technological/relational challenge of Gen Z
  • The spiritual hunger of Gen Z
  • Structuring your curriculum (bible classes and first-year experience) and co-curriculum to build upon Gen Z’s spiritual hunger and overcome their challenges in order to co-labor with the Spirit in the spiritual awakening/formation of your Generation Z students.

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A 

The Art & Science of a Comprehensive Assessment System

The Art & Science of a Comprehensive Assessment System

Presenter: Verna Lowe, Sr. Manager of Academic Engagement & Compliance; Western Governors University, CO 
Location: Salon 7
Target Audience: Academic & institutional effectiveness leaders, accreditation liaisons

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Integrating Assessment into the Institutional Planning Process

Overview: The best insights gained from the most effective assessment systems are stillborn without a strong linkage into the institutional planning process. So how is this effectively done by mature institutions? Walk through this vital process with a world-class assessment leader and discover ways to make your assessment system more integrated and effective.

  • Reviewing the structure of a strong assessment system
  • Considering ways to take assessment outcomes into the planning process
  • Looking more closely at where the ball is often dropped
  • Managing the integrated system – from assessment to planning to execution

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — Understanding What Doesn’t Work in Assessment Systems . . . And Avoiding It

Overview: All assessment systems are not created equal. As all academic leaders know, and sometimes admit, that some assessment plans just aren’t workable except on paper. Are you living in the frustration of trying to make one work that is not practical, realistic, or productive? Dissect the anatomy of institutional assessment and sharpen your grip on what is essential and good…and what’s to be avoided.

  • Learning from the field of institutional assessment – why some systems don’t work
  • Discovering insight from case studies – the good, bad, and ugly
  • Gaining prudent perspective by asking pertinent questions that can shed light on your reality
  • Being honest about your current plan – assessing your assessment strategy

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A

Seizing the Potential of Effective Retention

Seizing the Potential of Effective Retention

Presenter: Matt Boisvert & Rachel Phillips-Buck 
Location: Salon 8
Target Audience: Retention leaders, student development officers, admissions leaders, & academic officers

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Understanding and Assessing Your Retention Reality

Overview: We all understand that keeping a student is as important as recruiting a new student – maybe more so. So why do so many institutions have such a poor retention rate? Think carefully with two extraordinary retention experts about this key question and get some answers that could change your campus. Understand how retention efforts fail and succeed and what makes the difference. What is the right mindset that leads to retention success? If you’re unsatisfied with your institution’s retention rate, you should consider engaging with these veterans who have helped many grow.

  • Understanding why retention is important – not an afterthought
  • Getting past the typical retention rationalizations and killers – that hurt
  • Exploring ways to improve your retention results – creative ideas
  • Knowing where to leverage for making a big difference

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — Retention Intelligence – Knowing Your Retention Reality & Changing It

Overview: There is no intelligent change without getting a good grasp on your retention reality. What data should you track – and analyze? How do you meaningfully measure input and action? Where do you find the leveraged ah-ha? You can discover ways to identify the most important actions you can take to help you keep your highest risk students.

  • Becoming an expert on your retention reality
  • Understanding the factors that define your HARP – high at-risk population
  • Establishing simple systems for collecting the right data
  • Knowing what to do next – where do you start, the spark that starts the fire
  • Charting a course for highly effective retention – amplifying your efforts

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A

Expanding Your Capacity for Growing Your Enrollment

Expanding Your Capacity for Growing Your Enrollment

Presenter: Bart Caylor, CEO; Caylor Solutions, IN 
Location: Salon 9
Target Audience: Enrollment and marketing leaders

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Building an Effective Enrollment Growth Website

Overview: The word is clear and certain. Your website is the primary portal for prospective student connections. What may not be clear is how well your website serves this vital link to a growing enrollment. What are the essentials and most effective features that describe the most attractive sites? Brace yourself for a good website audit and take yours to the next level.

  • Reviewing the basic check list for important website features
  • Checking against weak links and dead ends
  • Removing skeletons that scare prospects away
  • Response time is of the essence – monitoring yours
  • Looking forward – what to expect and prepare for

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A
10:00 – 10:30    Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — Effective Use of Social Media for Enrollment Growth

Overview: Regardless of the challenges of social media – you just can’t afford to be on the sidelines. Smart institutions are making social media a primary or vital part of their marketing strategy. Some are discovering the incredible ways this can amplify your message to markets you can’t penetrate any other way. So get engaged and get connected in ways that count.

  • Reviewing the social media world of educational institutions – it’s a high stakes game
  • Knowing principles that should guide you – for your own sake
  • Leveraging the power of social media – without it biting you
  • Being efficient is the key to making it work

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A

Sharpening Your Enrollment Pencil

Sharpening Your Enrollment Pencil

Presenter: Tim Fuller, Sr. Vice President, Owner; Credo, IN; ABHE Sr. Fellow 
Location: Salon 10
Target Audience: Enrollment leaders & presidents

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Benchmarking & Understanding the Cost to Recruit a Student

Overview: What’s your level of expertise in benchmarking your enrollment efforts? Beyond enrollment goals, what benchmarks have you established and do these reflect admissions and enrollment policies? Digging deeper, do you keep a keen eye on what it actually costs to recruit a student, especially compared to net revenue per student? In essence, do you have a sustainable business model? Sharpen your understanding and skills with…

  • Understanding the merit and means of benchmarking
  • Identifying the right benchmarks for your institution
  • Calculating the cost of recruiting a student…and what poor retention does to this figure
  • Initiating best practices – for benchmarking and cost analysis

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — Mining Institutional Data for Actionable Information

Overview: How informed is your admissions strategy by timely and relevant information? Beyond key performance indicators (KPI’s) from the admissions stats, what other institutional data do smart enrollment leaders tap to inform their plan of action? What are practical ways to get this organized in a useful format? Empower your strategy with good information and work smarter.

  • Looking carefully at your admissions stats for insight
  • Looking beyond the admissions stats for relevant institutional information
  • Initiating practical processes for data collection
  • Grasping good tools for data analysis
  • Making sense of what you find and putting the info to work for you

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A

Planning for a Highly Effective Capital Campaign

Planning for a Highly Effective Capital Campaign

Presenter: Pat McLaughlin, President, The Timothy Group, MI
Location: Salon 11
Target Audience: Advancement leaders & presidents

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Conducting a Capital Campaign Readiness Audit – Knowing When You’re Ready

Overview: When does a capital campaign move from an idea or wish to a prudent path forward? How does a team know when the iron is hot and ready to strike? Think through the check list with a capital campaign expert who has helped hundreds of teams get ready for a successful launch, including…

  • Assessing the need – is the case compelling
  • Testing the waters – the pros and cons of a feasibility study
  • Measuring the likelihood of success – an evaluation of campaign leadership capacity
  • Surveying the entire waterfront – institutional poise for the push

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — Understanding the Design and Flow of a Capital Campaign – Getting It Right

Overview: There is a basic anatomy of every successful capital campaign, and a key part of campaign preparation is for the leadership team to understand what’s ahead and how the campaign will unfold. Look under the hood of a typical campaign with a distinguished advancement leader and review how it should run – from start to finish. It’s a priceless exercise that can save surprises and heartache. Take the time to study and learn how this huge effort should work.

  • Reviewing the normal financial structure of a campaign – building the numbers
  • Thinking through a campaign timeline – from planning, execution to celebration
  • Assessing the capacity of leadership – who is responsible for what
  • Knowing when key decisions and judgement calls are made – vital pivot points

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A

COA Team Training – Novice Evaluators

COA Team Training – Novice Evaluators

Location: Salon 12
Target Audience: Academic leaders preparing to serve on COA evaluation teams

Overview: The peer-review evaluation team process is at the heart of the accreditation quality assurance system. Well-prepared team members are the essential part of this time-honored system. This annual workshop is ABHE’s high-value experience to help new evaluation team members become proficient.

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Preparing for a Team Visit

Presenter: Sandi Peppard, Associate Dean of Students; Johnson University, FL

Overview: Learn what you need to do to prepare for serving on an evaluation visiting team. Much of the work of a team is completed before going to campus. Learn about each of these steps on the preparation process:

  • Resources for evaluation team members
  • Understanding and interpreting the Standards
  • Evaluator assignments: Who reviews what?
  • Reviewing the institution’s self-study documents
  • Evaluator workshops and note-taking
  • Logistics: getting there, getting home, arranging interview, missing materials

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A 
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — The On-Campus Visit

Presenter: Josiah Stephan, Executive VP, South Florida Bible College & Seminary, FL

Overview: The on-campus visit is an intensive time of investigation and reporting. This session will offer guidance on the team’s onsite activities and offer tips on how to make the most of this important time. Learn about…

  • Asking probing interview questions
  • Managing your time
  • Engaging team meetings and executive sessions
  • Assessing missing materials
  • Writing the team report
  • Writing commendations, suggestions, and recommendations

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A

COA Team Training – Veteran Evaluators

COA Team Training – Veteran Evaluators – What’s New

Location: Salon 13
Target Audience: Institutional leaders who have previously served on COA evaluation teams

Overview: Designed for team evaluators to keep up to date on changes in standards, policies, and procedures. Veteran evaluators should consider this refresher workshop a vital part of their continued preparation. This workshop will help strengthen an evaluator’s understanding and expertise.

8:30 – 9:30     Session 1 — Evaluating Graduate Institutions and Programs

Presenter: Tony Buchanan, Owner; Buchanan Consulting & Mediation, GA

Overview: Offering graduate programs affects many segments of the institution: curriculum, faculty, resources, library, student services, and level of outcomes. This session will explore ABHE expectations for institutions offering graduate programs and guidance for evaluators on how to evaluate these institutions.

  • Qualifications for evaluators to graduate institutions
  • Review areas with graduate requirements
  • Faculty qualifications for graduate teaching
  • Learning resources to support research
  • Academic rigor
  • Demonstration of outcomes

9:30 – 10:00     Q & A 
10:00 – 10:30   Refreshment Break

10:30 – 11:30   Session 2 — What’s New

Presenters: Ron Kroll, Executive Director, & Shane Wood, Associate Director; COA, FL

Overview: Standards, policies, and procedures change over time. This session will cover the major changes that have occurred over the past few years to help evaluators plan for those changes during visits. Also helpful for institutions preparing for an evaluation team visit. Review:

  • Recent changes in standards and policies
  • Procedural changes for evaluation teams
  • Resources for evaluation team visits

11:30 – 12:00     Q & A

Thursday Afternoon & Friday 1-Hour Workshops:

Creating and Communicating an Effective Community Covenant

Presenter: Rick Swift, Dean of Student Life; Columbia International University, SC
Location: Salon 1
Target Audience: Student development officers & presidents

Overview: One of the distinctives of biblical higher education is the culture of our campuses and the student experience this provides. Behind this high-value gift stands the campus community covenant. More than ever, these stand as counter-cultural standards expressing the essentials of a Christian community – and the CSDO has the pleasure of communicating these principles to the student body. What are the secrets to making this happen in a winsome and community-building way?

  • Understanding the purpose and history of the community covenant – tradition and Scripture
  • Regular reviews of key words and principles – language and perspectives change
  • Winsome communications with students and parents – a vision of Christian community
  • Addressing violations – respectful, restorative, and developmental accountability

Getting the Most from your Auditor – What to Expect

Presenter: Dave Moja, CEO; Moja & Company, GA; ABHE Sr. Fellow
Location: Salon 2
Target Audience: CFO’s and presidents 

Overview: Every accredited institution has an annual audit performed by an independent professional auditor. But not all institutions are served equally well by this vital process. So, what should you expect to receive; generally and specifically? What even is the definition of a good audit? Take a more careful look…through the eyes of a professional auditor who has served scores of institutions including…

  • Thinking again through the audit process – connecting the dots
  • Reviewing the auditor relationship – best practices for professional service
  • Confirming the basics of a good audit – a helpful checklist
  • Auditor aspirations – what the best auditors provide their clients

Exercising Presidential Leadership to Affect Enrollment Growth through Admissions & Retention

Presenter: Jeremy Lord, (Retired) Founder, J.M. Lord & Associates, MA; ABHE Sr. Fellow
Location: Salon 5
Target Audience: Presidents & enrollment leaders 

Overview: In a real way, the president IS the chief enrollment officer. Admissions cannot be just delegated down the line with confidence in the results. Discover how smart presidents and other institutional leaders engage with their admissions team for maximum synergy and results. Learn how to keep the main thing front and center…

  • Engaging in the admissions process
  • Creating expectations for faculty in building programs
  • Setting goals and objectives
  • Knowing what it takes to attract students in today’s market
  • Addressing key factors that impact new student admissions
  • Receiving reports and data the president needs to monitor, assess, and act on
  • Creating a value proposition to support the marketing message that supports recruiting


Transforming Strategic Planning into Effective Institutional Change

Presenter: Drumm McNaughton, CEO; The Change Leader, NM
Location: Salon 6
Target Audience: Presidents & all other institutional executive leaders 

Overview: All too often there is a debilitating gap between strategic institutional planning and real lasting change. Meetings and planning documents that only warm a spot on the shelf. Engage with an expert in organizational change, connect the dots and take your strategic planning from theory into shoe-leather impact. He’s led many others to a whole new level of strategic planning and change…and can help you step up your leadership game.

  • Understanding the strategic planning cycle – the whole picture
  • Thinking through the process – through the lens of your institutional setting
  • Securing intelligent data – getting the picture in focus
  • Getting organized for the journey – all the right pieces in the right place
  • Taking time for buy-in – the secret for mitigating resistance
  • Execution that brings lasting change – what it takes

Institutional Research That Produces Insight & Results

Presenter: Michael Jackson, Associate VP of Academic Affairs; Heritage Christian University, AL
Location: Salon 7
Target Audience: Institutional effectiveness leaders, accreditation liaisons, & academic leaders

Overview: Institutional excellence is not an accident. It’s the sweet fruit from the seeds of greatness, found in prudent institutional research, and cultivated into blossom by careful execution of change. Walk with one of the most astute leaders from across ABHE who thrives on research into institutional data that matters – real assessment – and turns that into actionable ideas and plans. This may help you take your institutional research and assessment to a new level.

  • Setting up good systems for institutional research
  • Looking deeply into the right institutional data
  • Making sense of research results
  • Linking research insight into strategic planning and effective execution

Hosting an Effective Evaluation Team Visit

Presenter: Mark Milioni, President; Baptist Bible College and Graduate School of Theology, MO
Location: Salon 8
Target Audience: Presidents, academic leaders, accreditation liaisons 

Overview: There’s an art and grace for hosting an effective team visit. Beyond efficient planning for the logistics, there’s planning for appointments and resources being made available that are essential for the efficient use of the team’s limited time on campus. If you have a team visit on the horizon, this is an invaluable opportunity to hear how a recent campus team visit was very well planned and hosted including…

  • Understanding the purpose and plan for a team visit
  • Getting the campus organized for premier hospitality
  • Setting up appropriate resources for easy access
  • Identifying the right work area and lodging for the team members

The Art & Science of Institutional Marketing – Stepping Up Your Game

Presenter: Steve Wolgemuth, CEO; YDOP, PA
Location: Salon 9
Target Audience: Presidents, enrollment & other marketing leaders 

Overview: Many institutional leaders admit they don’t feel as confident in leading marketing as they do in other areas. When budgets are tight and enrollment growth is important, how can a leader make sure their school is on track and using their marketing resources in the best possible way? Hear from Steve Wolgemuth, author of The Crucial 12: Powerful Insights on Marketing Leadership, and founder/CEO of YDOP Digital Marketing. Steve has been a popular ABHE speaker in past events and currently serves several of our members with strategy development and digital marketing services. Don’t miss this session when Steve will unpack:

  • Three questions every leader should ask their marketing stakeholders
  •  The simple test to determine if your institution is using a good marketing strategy
  •  Two ways to make a big enrollment impact with a limited marketing budget

Insights for Enrollment Growth – Learning from Another’s Success

Presenter: Kenneth Freire, Director of Enrollment; Bethel Global University, MN
Location: Salon 10
Target Audience: Enrollment & marketing leaders

Overview: When an institution, Bethany Global University, has an increase over the last 6 years in incoming students from 42 to 102 and a total FTE from 48 to 329, there’s something good happening that should be considered by others! Learn from their story, how their admissions focus on marketing via online advertising, automation, and customer service increased the incoming number. Total campus engagement resulted in a very effective retention.

  • Looking under the admissions hood – what they did that made the difference
  • Considering practical admissions measures – that made a big difference for them
  • Thinking more deeply about customer service – and the results
  • Walking through their retention efforts – grabbing what’s transferable

Generosity | Fundraising and the Kingdom of God

Presenter: Brad Layland, President; The Focus Group, FL
Location: Salon 11
Target Audience: Advancement leaders & presidents

Overview: What sets Christian advancement work apart in the field of philanthropy? Is advancement work a type of discipleship, developing in donors a Christ-like character including his virtue of generosity or does your advancement work look like your secular counterparts? Listen to the heart of a distinguished advancement leader share about how his walk with Christ impacts his perspective on fundraising in a Christian context. In this session we will:

  • Compare the results of Christian vs Secular fundraising with respect to peer institutions
  • Look at the nature of Christ…Consider how we model relational fundraising in our work
  • Think creatively about advancement discipleship
  • Evaluate our own work and create next steps

Managing Mission-Driven Athletics – Ivory Tower to Locker Room

Presenter: Dan Wood, Executive Director; NCCAA, SC
Location: Salon 1
Target Audience: Student development officers, athletic directors, & presidents

Overview: Why does the institutional mission focus seem to drift within the intercollegiate athletics program? Is it omission or commission? Most importantly, can it be avoided and/or corrected? How key is the relationship between the cabinet and the athletic staff? Hear a word of insight and warning from Dan’s perspective having served scores of institutions across the years. Consider prudent ways to keep your compass bearings steady and your athletic programs on target.

  • Reviewing the current landscape of Christian college athletics
  • Candidly discussing the good, the bad and the ugly of these programs
  • Considering insights from observations and real-time success stories
  • Establishing principles for mission-focus consistency throughout your campus
  • Weighing the benefits of presidential/athletic director synergy in a day of enrollment-driven demands

An Effective Employee Search Process

Presenter: Mark Griffin, CEO; In His Name HR, PA
Location: Salon 2
Target Audience: CFO’s, presidents & other chief officers 

Overview: Increasingly, institutions are facing a difficult challenge in finding the right employees for the right jobs. This is exacerbated by the risks imposed by legislative compliance. Do prudent leaders figure this out or outsource this challenge with additional risks? Listen to the advice from an HR expert and chart a practical and wise path through the maze of a professional and effective employee search process. You’ll consider …

  • Principles to guide your process – proven and practical
  • Insights from case studies – the good, bad and ugly
  • Pointers about employee search and hiring compliance issues – be smart
  • Policies that can protect and inform – prepared in advance

Fostering an Institutional Climate that Supports Cultural Diversity

Presenter: Larry McKinney, former ABHE Exe. Director, FL; + discussion panel
Location: Salon 5
Target Audience: Student life, academic and other institutional leaders 

Overview: Institutions within ABHE are a microcosm of the growing multiculturalism within our North American society. Consider ways to create a Christian learning community that is intentionally and faithfully hospitable and welcoming to individuals from diverse ethnic and cultural backgrounds – a climate that practices justice, fairness, and respect for all people, and that reflects the heart and image of God in all interactions and activities. As Christ-centered higher education institutions, we have a responsibility for inclusion and for equipping students to live in a diverse world.

  • Reviewing the ethnic demographic profile of ABHE institutions
  • Empowering student recruitment and admissions policies and practices that encourage ethnic diversity
  • Cultivating student services that address diversity needs, abilities, and multi-cultural backgrounds
  • Hiring faculty and staff that are representative of the ethnic diversity of the institution
  • Crafting curricular and co-curricular programs that create an appreciation and respect for faculty, staff, and students of color

Student Engagement – Motivating Students to Learn

Presenter: Wendy Guthrie, Assistant Dean, Professor; Johnson University, TN
Location: Salon 6
Target Audience: Academic officers, faculty

Overview: Is there a greater challenge professors face than how to effectively stimulate student engagement? And without engagement, learning is illusive. Consider insights and specific strategies based on best practices you can immediately implement to enhance student engagement in the learning process including…

  • Implementing anchor charts to teach foundational facts
  • Utilizing cooperative learning to help students process information
  • Adopting chunking as a teaching framework to enhance learning

Re-assessing Your Bible Curriculum – New Insights from Research Findings

Presenter: Greg Linton, Vice Provost for Academic Services; Johnson University, TN
Location: Salon 7
Target Audience: Academic officers & faculty

Overview: Based on findings from an extensive survey of curriculum designs for the delivery of Bible programs across ABHE, consider some of the comparative strengths and weaknesses of the various approaches to this core part of our curriculum. Re-assess how your curriculum is designed and what might be considered going forward.

  • Reviewing the primary Bible program curricula designs used across biblical higher education
  • Weighing the pros and cons of alternate curricula designs
  • Discovering insights from this research
  • Considering creative ideas to strengthen your curriculum

Crafting an Exemplary Self-Study Document

Presenter: Steve Hostetter, Vice President for Academic Affairs; Pacific Rim Christian University, HI
Location: Salon 8
Target Audience: Accreditation liaisons, academic officers, institutional effectiveness leaders 

Overview: At the heart of the accreditation evaluation process is the institution’s self-study document – this central publication that expresses the institution’s compliance with all of the accreditation Standards. Clear and careful documentation of compliance is a skill developed by all strong institutions representing a comprehensive analysis of the quality of the institution. Learn from an expert how they just completed this project in an exemplary way and what processes were used to collect the right data and make the correct analysis.

  • Reviewing the basics of the self-study document – purpose and outline
  • Understanding the nature of documentation
  • Establishing processes for data collection
  • Developing a clear, concise and comprehensive document

Pioneering a CBTE Undergraduate Program: Lessons from an Ongoing Journey

Presenter: Jeromey Martini, President; Horizon College & Seminary, SK
Location: Salon 9
Target Audience: Academic leaders & presidents

Overview: After serving 80 years as a traditional ministerial training college, in 2015 Horizon College & Seminary (Saskatoon) transitioned to become Canada’s first competency-based undergraduate Christian leadership college. Learn from our experience about some of the key processes, challenges, issues, benefits, and lessons learned from our journey thus far to pioneer a course-based CBE approach to Christian leadership training at the undergraduate level, paying special attention to the challenges raised by delivering CBE to Generation Z and Millennial demographics.

  • Discovering insights from their decision to pursue a CBE model
  • Reviewing important parts of the transition process
  • Learning how to launch a course-based CBE approach – at all levels
  • Pondering the implications for change – challenges, issues, results
  • Measuring the financial outcomes ROI

Motivating Enrollment Leaders for Extraordinary Results

Presenter: Keith Mock, Independent Enrollment Consultant, AL
Location: Salon 10
Target Audience: Enrollment leaders & presidents

Overview: How do some admissions teams consistently perform with superior results, always reaching their goals and beyond . . . and others consistently disappoint, missing their goals and failing to stay focused? What makes such a crucial difference? Consider the keen insights from a distinguished enrollment leader whose ace was motivating his admissions team to post extraordinary results. This is more than just effective management. It’s the impact of truly inspirational leadership. Think about…

  • Creating the right mindset for superior performance – the power of spirit de corps
  • Recruiting high performance admissions leaders – what to look for
  • Developing the disciplines that breed success – focus, closing, planning
  • Setting the pace – with goals, accountability, affirmation and by example

Planning the Annual Calendar and Assigning Responsibilities

Presenter: Clark Dickerson, Founder; Dickerson, Bakker and Associates, NC
Location: Salon 11
Target Audience: Advancement leaders & presidents

Overview: Being disorganized is a sure recipe for disaster in advancement. Sure, there’s the unexpected, but that cannot be an excuse. A prudent advancement leader has developed the skills to plan their annual calendar for all parties responsible and make clear assignments based on that schedule. Are you doing that well? Hear the experience of a veteran advancement leader how he helps teams get organized and reap the rewards of working off of a clear plan.

  • Reviewing the past – who did what, when?
  • Looking ahead – planning for the year, one project, event, and call at a time
  • Setting goals – realistic and challenging
  • Examining the details – making clear assignments
  • Keeping a record of performance – evaluations that inform future planning

Crafting and Implementing an Effective Student Handbook

Presenter: Scott Cawood, Sr VP for Student Affairs & Administration; Cairn University, PA
Location: Salon 1
Target Audience: Student development leaders

Overview: It’s like a compass for the explorer, the sextant for the sailor. Every mature CSDO is the captain and interpreter of the campus Student Life Handbook. It’s both the repository of stored wisdom from the past and a sure guide for appropriate procedures and protocols to guide student life. So, what does an exemplary student handbook look like? What are the essentials? And how does the CSDO best use this to strengthen and guard student life? Consider wise insights from a distinguished campus leader and consider what might be improved at your campus.

  • Reviewing the basics – purpose and contents
  • Thinking wisely – important policies and procedures that are a must
  • Managing the minutia – revisions and knowing what isn’t needed
  • Knowing who creates and owns this office document – broad engagement

The Art of Employee Evaluation and Transition/Termination

Presenter: Mark Griffin, CEO; In His Name HR, PA
Location: Salon 2
Target Audience: CFO’s and other chief officers, HR leaders

Overview: Is it true that good employees are the most valuable asset of an institution? If so, there should be prudent efforts toward their professional development including appropriate evaluation. There’s also a grace needed during times of transition and termination. Walk through these important institutional processes with a distinguished HR expert and sharpen your competency to serve your employees well including…

  • Developing a sound and developmental evaluation system – inspect what you expect
  • Integrating your evaluation system into affirmation and promotion – fair and balanced
  • Planning in advance for transitions – establishing proper protocols
  • Establishing clear policies for termination – respectful and legally compliant

Collaboration in Higher Education – Partnering Opportunities

Presenter: Jan Haas, Partner; CFO Colleague, PA
Location: Salon 5
Target Audience: CFO’s & presidents

Overview: Proactive leaders across biblical higher education are seeking alternative approaches to doing business – creative ways to improve financial sustainability. They’re exploring collaborative partnerships with other institutions, higher education business vendors, and the local community along with cooperative arrangements in other industries that may be applicable to higher education. Join with an astute financial consultant to review current methodologies for determining the return on investment (ROI) of these innovative collaborative relationships including…

  • Identifying potential collaboration opportunities with other colleges and universities
  • Considering group purchasing cooperatives
  • Examining partnership ideas with current vendors
  • Exploring town-gown relationships
  • Ascertaining the benefit of the collaborative efforts

Creating an Academic Team of Influence and Impact

Presenter: Scott Harris, Assoc. Prof, Educational Ministries & Leadership; Dallas Theological Seminary, TX
Location: Salon 6
Target Audience: Academic leaders, institutional leaders

Overview: Building off of the premise of serving leadership, this seminar is designed to help leaders at any level of the academic structure initiate specific action steps that work to strengthen the school’s culture of influence in the lives of those on the college campus and impact on the surrounding community and beyond.

  • Understanding the principles of serving leadership
  • Cultivating a culture of influence – within and beyond
  • Exploring action steps that lead to impact
  • Considering creative ideas for implementation

Assessing Online Education – Making Data-Driven Decisions

Presenter: Brian Simmons, Assoc. Provost for Online Studies; Columbia International University, SC
Location: Salon 7
Target Audience: Assessment & institutional effectiveness leaders, academic leaders

Overview: What are trustworthy systems for testing and demonstrating consistent delivery of high-quality online programs? How can college and university leaders ensure that students are learning what we intend for them to learn? Unpack some processes and tools that can make a practical assessment system work to enable data driven decisions that result in continuous improvement. Learn from an experienced veteran with a passion for effective online education…and take your online program assessment to the next level.

  • Understanding the importance of a quality LMS
  • Managing the tension between growth and quality…how to grow quality, online degree programs
  • Knowing how market data informs course development
  • Using the net promoter score, end of course surveys and assessing customer satisfaction
  • Hiring practices, online staff development, and assessing the effectiveness of online instruction

7 Numbers that Explain the Benefits of Estate Planning

Presenter: Clay Perkins, Executive Vice President; Financial Planning Ministry, CA
Location: Salon 8
Target Audience: Advancement officers & presidents

Overview: Many leaders overlook a simple, proven method of achieving long-term financial security for their institution: planned giving. Most institutions have committed and generous donors. But presidents and advancement leaders often don’t realize how much more effective they could be with a plan in place. Despite the profound difference this could make, it is often ignored. Consider practical steps from a non-profit ministry that has raised over $85 million in planned gifts for faith-based education, steps that you could take to begin an estate planning program for your institution. Take action…that could reap huge dividends.

  • Looking at numbers you should consider – weigh the impact
  • Reviewing options and plans to get started – walk then run
  • Understanding the process of planned giving – it’s not rocket science
  • Finding help when needed – knowing what you need

Understanding Marketing Principles Including Inbound/Content Marketing

Presenter: Bart Caylor CEO; Caylor Solutions, IN
Location: Salon 9
Target Audience: Enrollment & marketing leaders

Overview: This workshop is a must for admissions and marketing teams that are looking for new prospects and inquiries. Regardless of your budget, there are practical steps you can take to generate new business. Discover ways to expand your market reach and prompt greater interest in what you offer.

  • Understanding the secrets of inbound/content marketing – how it works
  • Thinking through how this can apply to your situation – now
  • Crafting an action plan that can get you started – soon
  • Considering creative ideas than can add sizzle to your marketing

Is Your Discount Rate Too High?

Presenter: John Dysart, CEO; The Dysart Group, NC
Location: Salon 10
Target Audience: Enrollment officers & financial aid leaders

Overview: Concerned about rising costs of financial aid? Struggling to control your discount rates? Unsure if your current financial aid structure and process support your recruitment and financial aid goals? Learn from an expert about the drivers of financial aid expenditures and learn real initiatives that can enable you to better use scarce financial aid resources. Consider ideas to control aid cost that can be implemented now.

  • Addressing current market challenges
  • Understanding the basic definition of discount rate
  • Weighing the drivers of institutional aid expenditures
  • Considering data informed packaging options
  • Establishing process & tactics to control expenditures
  • Reviewing sample reports for tracking

The Art and Science of Writing a Compelling Case Statement

Presenter: Ron Haas, Vice President, The Timothy Group, MI
Location: Salon 11
Target Audience: Advancement Officers

Overview: Every advancement leader knows the frustration of sharing a need or proposal and knowing immediately that the message fell flat. It was not clear and compelling. So, what makes a case statement effective? How is it organized and crafted so that the reader both understands and is moved? Listen to the insights of a distinguished advancement leader how he has helped many institutions get this essential part of their advancement toolbox written and crafted well.

  • Thinking through the purpose of a case statement – answering the why
  • Drawing a picture – casting the vision
  • Understanding the structure of a good case statement – clear and simple
  • Articulating the results – the difference this will make
  • Including the proof – stories that emote

The Wisdom of Teams

Presenter: Alan Pue, President, The Barnabus Group
Location: Salon 12 
Target Audience: Presidents & other executive officers

Overview: There is little empirical evidence that teams deliver higher performance results than non-teams. Yet it would be folly to ignore the biblical observation that “Without consultation plans are frustrated but with many counselors they succeed.” Improving team performance, therefore, is crucial to organizational success. Fortunately, as Patrick Lencioni observes, “As difficult as it is to build a cohesive team, it is not complicated.” Building on the work of Patrick Lencioni and others, consider some clear and practical ideas for building strong, effective teams.

  • Understanding the dynamics of a high-performance team
  • Recruiting for a team rather than a position
  • Cultivating team cohesion
  • Setting the pace for leading as a team

Management of Campus Health, Safety & Security

Presenter: Scott Cawood, Sr. VP for Student Affairs & Administration; Cairn University, PA
Location: Salon 1
Target Audience: Student development officers, chief operations officers

Overview: One of the core promises our institutions make to students and parents is a safe and healthy environment on campus. In today’s violent-prone culture, this is increasingly important on a CSDO’s dashboard. Take a review of how a wise campus leader assesses and manages the risks inherent in campus health, safety and security. Hear key principles from a distinguished veteran what he’s learned…and put into practice.

  • Conducting a campus safety audit
  • Provision of health and counseling services
  • Departmental risk assessment
  • Development of a Critical Incident Response Team
  • Tabletop exercise and full-scale incidents
  • Fostering relationships with municipal first responders

What You Should Know for Personal Financial Planning

Presenter: Ellen Daniels, Director of Engagement; Servant Solutions, IN
Location: Salon 2
Target Audience: Institutional leaders, financial officers, HR officers

Overview: Whether you’re just beginning your career, starting a family, making the most of life now, or planning for retirement years, no one else is responsible for your personal financial planning. Planning well now is both prudent and the best way to be financially ready for retirement. Let us help you think through some of the most important factors you should consider including…

  • Living on a budget vs day to day/paycheck to paycheck
  • Managing student debt
  • Establishing and maintaining good credit
  • Considering life insurance needs
  • Preparing for emergencies and contingencies
  • Putting it all together to be well-prepared – now and for retirement
  • Achieving financial peace of mind

Research Report – A Profile of Christian College Presidents

Presenter: Steve Ibbotson, Adjunct Professor; Prairie College, AB
Location: Salon 5
Target Audience: Presidents & trustees

Overview: Based on research conducted in a 2019 survey to the presidents of all ABHE schools, a profile of Christian college presidents will be presented including information on education, career backgrounds, and areas of preparation and challenge. This profile will be compared to the research done in 2004 to identify changes in the profile over the last 15 years. In this intriguing study report, discover…

  • Do ABHE presidents represent a broad range of gender, ethnic and educational backgrounds?
  • Do ABHE president tend to come from within their college or from another organization?
  • Has the profile of ABHE presidents significantly changed over the past 15 years?
  • Has the career path to the presidency changed over the past 15 years?

Grace Relations – A Biblical Approach to Racial Reconciliation

Presenter: Charles Ware, Grace Relations Ambassador; College of Biblical Studies, IN
Location: Salon 6
Target Audience: Presidents & all other institutional leaders

Overview: Times of cultural stress always exacerbate racial relations, it’s one of the distressing crises of our time. Leading from God’s Word offers hope, hope filled with grace enough to recalibrate and heal the deep divisions caused by racial prejudice and rhetoric. Hear the clarion call from one of God’s choice servants calling leaders across ABHE to stand up for a higher path, the call of grace that defines all of relations.

  • Listening to what the Word has to say about racism – the truth
  • Learning to lead with grace in a culture of snarky humor and bitterness
  • Loving those who are hurt and that we may not understand
  • Leaning on God’s Spirit for grace-filled breakthroughs of healing and reconciliation

Tapping the Potential Synergy Between Quality and Growth

Presenter: Joshua Fischer, President & CEO; InterLearn, OK
Location: Salon 7
Target Audience: Institutional effectiveness officers, academic leaders

Overview: A healthy institution should be a growing institution. However, growth can be an elusive reality when the distractions and dysfunctions of poor quality continue to cripple the organization. Review growth strategies of successful, growing organizations and consider practical ways your institution can push past the distractions that kill growth by turning quality principles into quality practices including…

  • Cultivating a zero defects attitude
  • Nourishing the right vocational attitudes
  • Identifying high personal values
  • Keeping the promise culture (MAP)

Open Forum with Commission Chair & Director

Presenter: Stephen Roy, COA Chair; Ron Kroll, COA Director, FL
Location: Salon 8
Target Audience: Academic officers, accreditation liaisons

Overview: Engage with the leaders of the ABHE Commission on Accreditation, reviewing recent changes in the accreditation standards and process along with trends in the world of higher education accreditation. If you have accreditation liaison responsibilities, this is an ideal time for the most up-to-date information, Q & A.

  • Hearing from Washington and the DE
  • Understanding changes in COA Standards
  • Staying in touch with changes in COA processes and protocols

Recovering the Leader’s Sense of Self

Presenter: Lane Cohee, Assoc. Professor of Management, Palm Beach Atlantic University, FL
Location: Salon 9
Target Audience: Institutional executive leaders

Overview: Adding too much value. Proving ourselves. Withholding information. Making destructive comments. Blame-shifting. Micro-managing. In a world where leadership texts abound, why do these obvious leadership flaws remain commonplace? And why do Christian leaders often follow suit? Examine more carefully why many flaws in leadership stem from our flawed, even unbiblical senses of self, and why the gospel offers us hope.

  • Learning how to diagnose our personal leadership defects
  • Understanding the culprits of shame and pride
  • Recognizing our vulnerability for validation
  • Crafting a new leadership—and personal—identity message

Synergy of the President & Enrollment Officer

Presenter: Joshua Beers, Sr. VP for Student Experience; Lancaster Bible College | Capital Seminary, PA
Location: Salon 10
Target Audience: Enrollment leaders & presidents

Overview: If synergy is that golden season when the whole is more than the sum of the parts – there’s no more apropos time than when an institution’s president and enrollment officer are in perfect stride, building on each other’s strengths and lifting each other to levels of performance and impact that neither could achieve alone. So how does this happen? We know it doesn’t just happen, there’s been vital planning and engagement aligned with principles of partnership that make all the difference. Learn from one leader who’s seen this happen.

  • Developing a synergistic relationship – the highest form of teamwork
  • Tapping the power of true partnership – principles that work
  • Capturing the right complimentary roles – clarity of understanding
  • Committed to transparent communications – the power of timely truth

Building Extraordinary Donor Relationships

Presenter: Clark Vandeventer, Head Fundraising Coach; Major Gifts Fundraiser, Inc, CA
Location: Salon 11
Target Audience: Presidents & advancement officers

Overview: Advancement work at its core is relational. Sure, there are lots of behind-the-scenes block and tackle work to be done – but without building high-value relationships with the right donors, there’s no future for the institution’s fundraising. So, does building extraordinary donor relationships describe your advancement work? If not, let’s learn together what this can look like and how a veteran advancement leader made this a trademark of his work.

  • Owning the responsibility and opportunity – intentionality
  • Developing a workable plan – choosing where to start
  • Understanding how relationships grow – time and exposure
  • Cultivating the art of relationship building – especially listening and caring
  • Feeding the relationship culture – creative ideas, events, celebrations

CHEC Roundtable

Presenter: Justin Cooper, Executive Director; CHEC, ON
Location: Salon 12
Target Audience: Leaders serving in all ABHE Canadian institutions

Overview: Join this annual gathering of leaders from all Canadian institutions across ABHE. The perfect time to network, compare notes and think forward about the issues unique to the Canadian Christian higher education movement. Share what’s happening at your institution and…

  • Hear news from the Canadian higher education market
  • Discuss challenges facing Christian higher education in Canada
  • Learn from the journey of others – progress and issues