Conference Sponsor

With Grateful Appreciation


Conference Pricing

Early Bird Deadline: September 1, 2021

Members (On-Site): $475 per person ($425 Early Bird)
Members (Virtual Via Zoom): $150
Non-Members (On-Site): $675 per person ($625 Early Bird)
Non-Members (Virtual Via Zoom): $300


Virtual Pricing Includes:

Full engagement in two-day program, including Q&A
Access to video recordings of presentations post-conference
Access to all conference resources


On-Site Pricing Includes:

Full engagement in two-day program, including Q&A
Networking/Fellowship with attendees & presenters
Access to video recordings of presentations post-conference
Three night’s lodging at the nearby SpringHill Suites by Marriott
7 meals & refreshments
Access to all conference resources

Program Overview


Download Program Schedule

Rick Swift, Dean of Student Life — Columbia International University (SC)
Overview: One of the most enriching opportunities for most CSDO’s is engaging in the leadership development of campus student leaders. Including both residence life leaders and student organizations – the doors are wide open for both formal and informal leadership development. Are you making the most of these opportunities? Think creatively with a distinguished campus leader who’s spent decades pouring his life into students.

  • Surveying the opportunities — student leaders and groups
  • Thinking creatively about leadership development initiatives
  • Tapping resources for engagement — books, events, programs
  • Budgeting for leadership development — high-leverage investment

Presenter: Kirk Sabine, VP for Campus Life — Kingswood University (NB)
Overview: It’s not if students will have conflicts, but when and over what issues. And more times than not, the peace-making effort is led by the SDO. After years in this role with stories to share, hear some prudent. And practical principles to guide your actions. Discover the path of developmental resolution with this sage from Sussex, NB. Expand your capacity to serve your students well — especially when wise leadership is needed most.

  • Taking key steps to address relational conflict — sooner than later
  • Making a prudent assessment of the true reality — no hasty decisions
  • Leading a conflict situation toward peace — listening, observing, confronting
  • Creating an appropriate restoration plan — using your head and resources

Presenter: Jamie Giblett, Sales Manager — Digistorm Inc. (CO)
Overview: Digital messaging is an essential backbone of effective campus communications. Campus communications enhance relationships that strengthen retention and engagement with the campus community. These empower student development leaders with powerful tools for timely, effective, and creative communications that leading institutions are deploying for amazing results. Consider . . .

  • Understanding the benefits of a campus mobile app
  • How to integrate a campus mobile app into an overall campus communications strategy
  • Inspiring case studies for how a campus app can be successfully deployed

Presenter: Scott Cawood, Sr VP for Student Affairs & Administration — Cairn University (PA)
Overview: It’s like a compass for the explorer, the sextant for the sailor. Every mature SDO 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 SDO 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, including government compliance
  • 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

Presenter: Rachel Philips-Buck, VP for Student Success — Pharos Resources (TX)
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. Consider engaging with these veterans who have helped many institutions grow.

  • Understand 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

Presenter: Matt Boisvert, President — Pharos Resources (TX)
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

Presenter: Dan Wood, Executive Director — NCCAA (SC)
Overview: Why does an institution’s mission focus seem to drift within an 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? Consider prudent ways to keep your compass bearings steady and your athletic programs on target.

  • Review the post-pandemic landscape of Christian college athletics
  • Candidly discussing the good, the bad and the ugly of these programs
  • Consider insights from observations and real-time success stories
  • Establish principles for mission-focused consistency throughout your campus

Presenter: Josh Beers, President — OneLife Institute (PA)
Overview: Student transformation is a core expression of the Great Commission, fulfilling Christ’s call to go and make disciples. It’s in our unique DNA. We also know this happens in community, life-on-life. Think creatively with a passionate disciple-maker how you can be more effective and intentional about student transformation by cultivating the right environment on campus and online, including . .

  • The dynamics of student transformation — prompting God moments
  • Loving students forward – healing, hearing, motivation for mission
  • Knitting a campus together for transformation — campus leadership & peer connections
  • Taking students deeper with God – transformative experiences and disciplines

Conference Faculty

Josh Beers


OneLife Institute

Matt Boisvert


Pharos Resources

Rachel Phillips-Buck


VP for Student Success
Pharos Resources

Scott Cawood


Sr. VP for Student Affairs
Cairn University

Jamie Giblett


Sales Manager
Digistorm Inc.

Kirk Sabine


VP for Campus Life
Kingswood University

Rick Swift


Dean of Student Life
Columbia International University

Dan Wood


Executive Director

Frequently Asked Questions

Is lodging included in the registration fee?
YES, for on-site attendees3 nights, including arrival the evening before the conference begins.
Can I request for additional hotel nights?

YES The ABHE group rate is $110/night.  You can qualify for our group rate three days prior and three days post conference.  You can request and pay for your additional hotel nights during the registration process.  All reservations must be made and managed by the ABHE office as it is part of a group reservation.  This includes changes to existing reservations.  Email with any questions or updates to existing reservations.

Is airport shuttle service available?

YES! Complimentary shuttle service is available from the Orlando International Airport (MCO). To request the complimentary shuttle to the Hilton Garden Inn:

  • Call the hotel for shuttle pickup – 407-240-3725
  • Take airport elevator to level 1 – ground transportation
  • Go through the sliding doors
  • Stand at either A4 (A Side) or B4 (B Side) for pickup
Where is the hotel located in relation to the ABHE Conference Center?

The Hilton Garden Inn is directly across the street from the ABHE Weber Center (located in the Citadel I Building – Suite 130).

Are meals included in the registration fee?
YES for on-site attendees, including 7 meals and all snacks/beverages.
Are scholarships available?
YES for on-site attendees – limited scholarships are available.  Please email your request to with an explanation of your financial need.
What is your Cancellation Policy?
In the event of either virtual or on-site registration cancellation, fees paid in advance are refundable – less a $50.00 service charge per person, provided written notice is received by ABHE no later than three weeks prior to the event. No refunds will be granted after that date. E-mail notification will suffice. Please e-mail to request a refund. There are no refunds provided for no-shows.
How do I CANCEL a person on my registration?
You may log back into your registration form at any time with your confirmation number to make any cancellations, or contact to have your registration cancelled.

Executive Leadership Training Logo

Growing institutions are led by growing leaders. Consider engaging in the Executive Training Program specifically designed for Student Development Officers in ABHE. Delivered over two years including over 36 workshop presentations in seven areas of leadership competency and capacity. You can review the certification program details HERE. Enroll in the program today!

Questions regarding the certification program can be directed to David Medders, Executive Vice President.

Hilton Garden Inn

For those attending the Conference On-Site, the ABHE staff will make a hotel reservation for you. Please indicate your room type/preference when you register for the conference.The Hilton Garden Inn is located 1 mile from the Orlando International Airport.  

Hilton Garden Inn – Orlando Airport 
7300 Augusta National Drive
Orlando, FL 32822 
(407) 240-3725     


Complimentary shuttle service is available from the Orlando International Airport (MCO) to the Hilton Garden Inn. To request complimentary shuttle service:

  • Call the hotel for shuttle pickup – (407) 240-3725     
  • Take airport elevator to level 1 – ground transportation
  • Go through the sliding doors
  • Stand at either A4 (A Side) or B4 (B Side) for pickup

Conference Staff

David MeddersDavid Medders
Executive Vice President



Carol Dibble
Director of Communications & Events



Darby BlanchardDarby Blanchard
Digital & Administrative Services Coordinator