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2023 NASPA Racial Equity and Social Change Conference

In-Person Conferences Equity, Inclusion and Social Justice Equity, Inclusion, and Social Justice Division

The NASPA Racial Equity and Social Change Conference, formerly the NASPA Multicultural Institute, provides space for thought leaders and practitioners to share ideas, strategies, and evidence-based research about advancing our collective work to create more equitable and just campuses and communities. 

The new name of this conference represents a critical shift from a multicultural framework, which acknowledges and honors differences in culture, to a racial equity framework, with the goal of redressing and changing deeply racialized systems that restrict outcomes and opportunities for all groups. NASPA’s commitment to racial equity is intersectional in nature and impact, because interlocking systems of oppression operate together and exacerbate each other. Everyone benefits when racial equity is advanced, because when equity is at the center, people of all races, all of whom also hold other identities, can access the resources they need to thrive. 

In shaping the inaugural Racial Equity and Social Change Conference, we are prioritizing content that centers racial equity, creates social change, and integrates an intersectional lens. In the context of coordinated attacks targeting queer and trans students, undermining programs focused on BIPOC students, restricting what is taught in and out of the classroom, and dehumanizing and threatening educators, our work toward justice must also be coordinated and collective. 



Presented By

Conference Focus Areas

In shaping the inaugural Racial Equity and Social Change Conference, we are prioritizing content that centers racial equity, creates social change, and integrates an intersectional lens.

Establishing and Strengthening Pathways for Success for Minoritized Groups
  • How are campuses surfacing and removing structural barriers to success and building pathways that enhance access and persistence of minoritized students? 

  • What assessment mechanisms are campuses implementing to understand the impact of integrating racial equity as a key priority? 

  • How are campuses funding and staffing programs and initiatives for minoritized groups to ensure equity across their offerings? 

  • In what ways are campuses preparing students with the skills and capacities to enact equitable and sustainable change?


Advocating for Racial Justice in a Climate of Attacks on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  • With legislation increasingly targeting a broad range of diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives in higher education, what measures are in place to educate and support staff and faculty about impacts to their work and practice?  

  • What implications will legislation have for future research and practice that center social and racial justice?

  • How are staff, faculty, and students, as well as institutions, taking an active role in the legislative process to counter the current equity backlash? 


Building Systems for Sustainable, Healing-Centered Leadership
  • In what ways are institutions and the field recognizing and supporting the needs of staff who are navigating uncertainty, exhaustion, and challenging political and organizational climates? 

  • How do we center healing in leadership and supervision? 

  • How can we cultivate capacity for visionary work while also acknowledging the state of current institutional and societal realities? 


Advancing Student Affairs and Higher Education through Equity-Focused Research and Practice
  • In what ways can we foster, propagate, and apply research that spans boundaries, developmental models that speak to intersectional lives, and innovative practices that advance racial equity?

  • How do we build and open pathways into research for those whose perspectives and methods have been historically excluded? 


Featured Speakers

Opening Keynote “Punished for Dreaming: The Case for Abolitionist Teaching & Educational Reparations”

Closing Panel: Navigating the Dissolution of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion"

RESC Pre-conference Workshops

Racial Justice Design Thinking Bootcamp: Integrating CAS Standards with NADOHE’s Framework for Advancing Anti-Racism Strategy on Campus

Thursday, December 7, 9am to 12pm ET

Emelyn dela Peña, Ed.D., Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Loyola Marymount University
Usama Shaikh, Ed.D., Assistant Chief Diversity Officer, Stony Brook University

The National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (NADOHE) Framework for Advancing Anti-Racism Strategy on Campus provides a comprehensive approach to achieving racial equity in higher education. This session will highlight the CAS Statement on Justice, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging, share elements of the Anti-Racism framework pertinent to student affairs, and engage participants in a design thinking methodology to develop a comprehensive action plan integrating the framework with current student affairs practice.

Can It Be Measured?: Approaches to Assessment, Evaluation, and Data in Equity Work

Thursday, December 7, 9am to 12pm ET

Bethany L. Miller, Ph.D., Director of Institutional Research & Assessment, Macalester College

Student success, retention, equity, and quality are at the forefront of conversations on many campuses and in higher education itself. Ways to engage campus-wide participation focused on quality, equity, retention, and student success will continue to be part of larger strategic conversations as higher ed moves beyond this moment and into other challenges that await. This interactive workshop will focus on the foundations of assessment, evaluation, and data as key components of equity work.

Tools & Strategies to Lead White Accountability Groups on College and University Campuses

Thursday, December 7, 9am to 12pm ET

Kathy Obear, Ed.D., President, Center for Transformation and Change; Social Justice Training Institute Co-founder

In these times of renewed demands for racial justice and the dismantling of both systemic racism and the legacy of white supremacy throughout every aspect of all colleges or universities, it is critical that we increase the internal capacity of white leaders and change agents to effectively partner with colleagues of color to manifest real, sustainable change. It is no longer acceptable to collude with systemic racism by off-loading anti-racism work onto only Senior Diversity Officers and Directors of Multicultural Centers as well as every other Person of Color, regardless of their other assigned roles and responsibilities.

How can we motivate and skill-up white leaders and potential change agents to move out of complicity, internalized dominance, fear, and inaction to develop and demonstrate the core capacities to lead organizational change efforts to dismantle racism in all its forms and co-create true racial justice and anti-racism throughout the college or university? In this engaging, practical session, participants will explore proven strategies and approaches to lead White Accountability Groups for members of the campus community.

Participants will receive access to a very comprehensive set of open access resources they can use to design and facilitate White Accountability Groups, including a packet of ready-to-use materials and worksheets, webinar recordings, and books and articles. 

Conference Schedule

Browse the educational session lineup and review the schedule-at-a-glance below to familiarize yourself with our conference. (Please note that the schedule is subject to change.)

Day 1: Thursday, December 7, 2023
All times are in Eastern Time
Day 2: Friday, December 8, 2023
All times are in Eastern Time
Day 3: Saturday, December 9, 2023
All times are in Eastern Time

8:00 a.m.

Registration Opens

9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. 

Pre-Conference Workshops 

1:30 – 3:00 p.m.

Conference Opening
Featuring Dr. Bettina L. Love, "Punished for Dreaming: The Case for Abolitionist Teaching & Educational Reparations"

3:15 - 4:15 p.m. 

Concurrent Session Block 1 

4:30 - 5:30 p.m. 

Concurrent Session Block 2

3:15 - 5:15 p.m. 

Extended Learning Session Block 1

5:30 - 6:30 p.m.

Networking Reception

                                                                             Schedule is subject to change.

 8:00 a.m.

Registration Opens

 8:00 - 9:00 a.m.

Full Breakfast (included with registration)

9:15 - 10:15 a.m. 

Concurrent Session Block 3

10:30 - 11:30 a.m. 

Concurrent Session Block 4 

9:15 - 11:15 a.m. 

Extended Learning Session Block 2

11:30 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.

Lunch on Your Own

1:00 - 2:15 p.m.

Conference Plenary Session

2:30 - 3:30 p.m.

Concurrent Session Block 5

3:45 - 4:45 p.m. 

Concurrent Session Block 6

5:00 - 6:00 p.m.

Constituent Group Meetings

                                                                             Schedule is subject to change.

 8:00 a.m.

Registration Opens

 8:00 - 9:00 a.m.

Full Breakfast (included with registration)

Constituent Group Meetings

9:15 - 10:15 a.m. 

Concurrent Session Block 7

10:30 - 11:45 a.m. 

Conference Closing Plenary: Navigating the Dissolution of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion


  • Dr. Aarika Camp, Vice President of Student Affairs, Goucher College; NASPA Small Colleges and Universities Division Director

  • Cammie Dean, Assistant Vice President of Student Affairs, Midwestern State University 

  • Dr. Emelyn dela Peña, Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Loyola Marymount 

  • Benjamin Reith, Director of Student Affairs and DEI/Instructor, Bellin College

  • Nick Daily, Founder and CEO, LuvServedDaily Consulting; RESC Committee Member


12:00 p.m. 

Optional Group Excursion (to be announced)

                                                                             Schedule is subject to change.

Continuing Education

Please note: The deadline to request clock hours for this event is January 8, 2024. 
NASPA has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 5120. The list of programs for which NBCC-approved clock hours will be awarded is available here. NASPA is solely responsible for all aspects of the programs.
Participants can receive a maximum of 10.5 clock hours for this event. To receive credit, please complete the clock hours reporting form. In addition, you must complete an online evaluation of individual sessions, which will be emailed to you shortly after the conference. A PDF certificate of completion will be sent via email after the form has been processed and approved.
A general certificate of attendance is available for sessions that are not eligible for NBCC, or to document hours for other licenses or credentials. Use this certificate of attendance request form to request this certificate.
For questions regarding continuing education, please contact Teri Gillmor at [email protected].


Registration as a member is based on individual membership status at the time of the event. If your current membership will expire prior to the event, you will have the option to renew at the time of registration to receive the member rate.

If you are not a current member and are employed by a college or university that is an institutional member, you can join as a professional affiliate member for $80. If your institution is NOT a member, you can join as an associate affiliate member for $250. Both membership types provide access to the individual member rate for the event. Please visit the membership section of the NASPA website to learn more about membership types and benefits. We hope you’ll consider joining today!

For a comprehensive listing of NASPA registration policies, please visit this page.



Early Registration
04/01/2023 to 10/06/2023
 Regular Registration
10/07/2023 to 11/06/2023
Late Registration
11/07/2023 to 12/09/2023
NASPA Member 
 $525  $575  $650
Non Member
 $725 $775 $850
   NASPA Student Member
 $225  $275





Early Registration
04/01/2023 to 10/06/2023

 Regular Registration
10/07/2023 to 11/06/2023
Late Registration
11/07/2023 to 12/09/2023
NASPA Member 
 $75  $90  $125
Non Member
 $175  $190  $225




All conference activities will take place at the  Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.

Rooms start at $195/night, and rates are subject to applicable tax, which is currently 14.95% per room, per night, and is subject
to change without notice.

The hotel room block cutoff date is November 14, 2023, or until the block is filled. 



Reserve Your Room Today!


The 2023 NASPA Racial Equity and Social Change Conference sponsorship application is now live! Click here to view 2023 offerings and pricing, and click below to submit your application. The priority deadline was Friday, October 20th, but applications are still being accepted!

Please reach out to Fred Comparato, Senior Director of Corporate Development, at 614-204-5994 or [email protected] with any questions regarding exhibit and sponsorship opportunities.

Thank you to our 2024 Sponsors!

Event Health & Safety

With ongoing public health emergencies, NASPA is prepared to manage our place-based events with the health, safety, and well-being of our attendees, staff, presenters, exhibitors, sponsors, and speakers in mind. All participants, including, but not limited to, attendees, speakers, sponsors, volunteers, NASPA staff, service providers, and others are expected to abide by our code of conduct and all polices in effect for any event sponsored by the Association.

We will continue to monitor and update safety precautions for all of our conferences regularly and coordinate with trusted national resources, state and local public health agencies, and the hotels/venues hosting our events.

In all cases, we will continue to assess the risks in the area local to the event and the current status in the United States. In keeping with the Association's duty of care and the responsibility as host, NASPA has implemented safety requirements for many of our place-based convenings.

We reserve the right to modify these policies and procedures at any time given the rapidly changing nature of any current and ongoing public health emergencies.

Please see the NASPA Global Health, Safety, and Responsibility webpage for complete information about NASPA's policy.