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June 25, 2021

Late Registration Deadline

NASPA Virtual Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education

Virtual Conferences and Institutes Student Success Career and Workforce Development Equity, Inclusion and Social Justice

The NASPA Virtual Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education is a convergence of three conferences in one registration! The conferences offer outstanding professional development opportunities that will shape your learning experience.

Thank you to everyone who joined us for the 2021 NASPA Virtual Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education!

Reminder: Access to recordings will be available until August 31, 2021 for all registered attendees.

Stay tuned for more information about our 2022 NASPA Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education, scheduled to take place in Baltimore, MD in June 2022.



Presented By


The NASPA Virtual Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education convenes the student success-focused community to engage in important professional development, exchange innovative ideas, and network with peers. You will engage with content from the Assessment, Persistence, and Data Analytics Conference, First-generation Student Success Conference, and the inaugural Dismantling Systemic Barriers to Student Success Conference remotely through a virtual event platform.

The Dismantling Systemic Barriers to Student Success Conference is a convergence of the former Student Financial Wellness Conference and the Closing the Achievement Gap Conference with the addition of exciting expanded content. This new conference will debut and join the Assessment, Persistence, and Data Analytics Conference and the First-generation Student Success Conference. Conference programming will foster important dialogue to uncover pervasive barriers and prompt strategic change in institutional approaches for serving students and advancing outcomes.

In addition to a robust selection of educational programming, the conferences will offer multiple dynamic keynotes, thought-provoking pre-conference workshops, exhibit hall offerings, and active engagement with attendees and presenters.

The NASPA Virtual Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education is your opportunity to take a cross-functional approach to student success when it has never been more important.
Take a look at the 2020 NASPA Virtual Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education program book to learn about last year's programming and events.

To learn more about each of the conferences' learning outcomes and themes, visit the pages below:


The 2021 NASPA Virtual Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education will offer an innovative way to engage remotely through: 

  • Multiple days of curated content facilitated by subject-matter experts from all three conference tracks;

  • Educational sessions and connections to presenters and attendees;

  • Thoughtful presentations from featured speakers to strengthen your knowledge base;

  • Opportunities to engage and network with other attendees across conferences, and;

  • An exhibit hall for real-time engagement with sponsors & exhibitors.

We hope you’ll join us!




Featured Speakers

Featured Panel

Registration and Pricing

One registration grants access to conference speakers, sessions, and special features from all three conferences! When registering, please select the conference that best aligns with your interests.

Registration is closed. Please email sshe@naspa.org for questions about on-site registration. 

Registration Fees

Early Registration
February 12, 2021 - April 30, 2021

Regular Registration
May 1 - May 28, 2021

Late Registration
May 29 - June 25, 2021

NASPA Member
$155 $185 $215
$255 $285 $315
NASPA Student Member
$75 $85 $95
Half-Day Pre-conference Workshops
Full-Day Pre-Conference Workshops


Registration as a member is based on individual membership status. If you are employed by a college or university that is an institutional member, you can join NASPA as an individual member at the $75 rate. This gives you the conference registration and a year of membership for less than the non-member registration fee. If your institution is NOT a member, then you will need to join at the associate affiliate rate of $242 and then you can pay the individual member rate for conference registration. Visit the membership section of the NASPA website to learn about membership types.

If you are experiencing financial hardship, please visit the NASPA Foundation Membership Scholarships or NASPA Foundation Professional Development Access Scholarships which could be applied for #SSHE21.


Registration Closed

Registration Policies


Please note that there is no "Bill Me" option in the registration. The online registration system will accept the following credit cards for payment:

  • Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express

Changes in payment method or credit card after the initial payment is processed are NOT permitted. Please be sure that you are using the appropriate credit card for this transaction.

It is preferred that registration be paid by credit card. If this is not possible for you because of your institutional policies, please email sshe@naspa.org to request an invoice for check payments.

  • If you are including multiple registrants, please include the following information for each registrant: conference selection (APDA, DSBC, or FGSS), and Yes or No answers to the following event questions (Do you agree to allow NASPA to share your email address with any sponsors or exhibitors who support this program?; Is this your first time attending?; Would you be willing to serve as a conference mentor for SSHE21?; Would you be interested in being mentored by a conference mentor at SSHE21?; Do you request closed captioning for this program?; Do you identify as a first-generation college student or graduate?).

Please note, all registrations needing to be paid by check must be submitted by June 1, 2021. All check payments must then be received within 30 days or your order will be canceled.



Substitutions are allowed by individuals within the same institution/company. Substitutions should have the same member classification so that the payment is an even exchange transfer of payment. Please email your request for the substitute attendee to refund@naspa.org. Please remember to include the transfer attendees name and email address with your request.


Registration Cancellation Policy: Cancellation/refund deadline less a $50.00 administrative fee is May 7, 2021. This program may be canceled or postponed due to unforeseen circumstances. In this case, fees will be refunded; however, NASPA will not be responsible for additional costs, charges, or expenses, including cancellation/change charges assessed by airlines, hotels, and/or travel agencies. NASPA is not responsible for weather or travel-related problems and will not reimburse registration fees for these issues. Please click here to submit a refund request. Refunds will not be processed after May 7, 2021 for any reason.

Individual NASPA memberships are non-refundable and non-transferable.

Please allow 30 business days for processing. To inquire about the status of a refund after 10 business days, please send an email to refund@naspa.org.

Click here to view NASPA’s complete Payment Policies and Procedures.

Additional Membership Questions? Please contact the NASPA office at 202-265-7500 or via e-mail to registration@naspa.org.

Pre-conference Workshops

Pre-Conference Workshop Registration

Pre-conference workshops are available to conference registrants at an additional cost. Please note, you cannot register or attend a pre-conference workshop without registering for one of the conferences.

  • Full-Day Pre-Conference Workshops (4-hours): These workshps are held prior to the conference and offer participants an in-depth study and learning experience. Pre-conference workshops will require participants to pre-register for a fee.
  • Half-Day Pre-Conference Workshops (2-hours): These workshps are held at the beginning of the conference and are designed as highly-specialized opportunities to discuss a specific topic or program. Pre-conference workshops will require participants to pre-register for a fee.

View the workshop descriptions below to learn more! Any questions regarding the workshops, please email us at sshe@naspa.org.

Many Uses of CAS Standards to Create, Implement, and Assess Programs and Services that Lead to Student Success

Saturday, June 26, 2021 from 1:00 - 5:00 p.m. EST

Strengthening the capacity of college and university departments to facilitate student success has never been more important. To achieve these goals there must be an intentional framework to guide practice. CAS Standards can be used to develop, implement, and assess programs and services that facilitate student success outcomes. In this session, participants will explore diverse ways to use the CAS Standards and CAS cross-functional frameworks to enhance program and service delivery. Participants will leave with a plan for using CAS Standards and self-assessment and program review practices in ways that make sense for the diverse functional areas and institutional types in which we work.

Presenters: Stacy Andes, Villanova University, ACHA Representative to CAS; Dan Bureau, University of Memphis, AFA Representative to CAS, CAS President; Raymond Plaza, Santa Clara University, ACPA Representative to CAS; Jennifer Wells, Kennesaw State University, CAS Editor

Additional fee: $40

Re-engaging First-gen Graduate Students: Developing a Post-pandemic Campus Plan

Saturday, June 26, 2021 from 1:00 - 3:00 p.m. EST

This interactive workshop will guide audience members through several large and small group discussions and activities in order to explore potential opportunities for re-engaging their first-generation student population as part of post-pandemic campus planning. Facilitators will guide attendees through a critical reflection of their institutional systems for supporting first-generation graduate students. Attendees will also complete a SWOT analysis to identify opportunities and needs to advocate for change on their campus.

Presenters: Alece Alderson, Assistant Vice Chancellor of Student Life, University of California, San Francisco; Matt Newlin, Higher Education Consultant

Additional fee: $20

Partnering with Parents and Families of First-generation College Students

Saturday, June 26, 2021 from 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. EST

Building a sense of community and belonging is incredibly important for first-generation college students. A key factor to this foundation of support is engaging parents and families of first-generation students; institutions can harness this support by viewing parents and families of first-generation students as partners in their students’ success. Drawing from their experiences at mid-size and large, public, four-year institutions, the presenters will first discuss the challenges of engaging the parents of first-generation students. They will then offer a suggested timeline to consider when developing content for communication and engagement. Finally, the presenters will provide examples of partnering opportunities and events, strengthening connections to the institution and levels of support.

Presenters: Amy Baldwin, Director and Senior Lecturer of Writing, Literacy, and Academic Success in Student Transitions, University of Central Arkansas; Daphne Rankin, Associate Vice Provost for Strategic Enrollment Management, Virginia Commonwealth University; Martina Martin, Associate Director of Student Transitions and Family Programs University of Kentucky

Additional fee: $20

Assessment & Data Analytics 101: An Introduction

Sunday, June 27, 2021 from 1:00 - 5:00 p.m. EST

This pre-conference workshop is a “boot camp” on student affairs assessment with a primer on data analytics. The program offers an opportunity to develop your assessment and critical reasoning skills. Learn the basics you need to enhance the work you are already doing or start something new for your area or campus. In this session, participants will learn from presentations, as well as engage in practical mini-workshops within small groups that represent your campus experience. This combination will allow you to get the most from your time and make assessment and data analytics more salient in your work. As a result of attending, participants will become familiar with approaches for conducting departmental review and accreditation in student affairs while having the opportunity to create an assessment plan for a program including: student learning outcomes, identifying data sources, and reporting strategies.

Presenters: Pamelyn Shefman, Executive Director, Institutional Effectiveness and Research, Alvin Community College; Tim Kresse, Director of Budget & Technology, Division of Student Life, Miami University; Kimberly Kruchen-Spaulding, Manager of the Office of Assessment & Planning, University of Colorado Boulder; Marisol Cardenas, Educational Learning & Assessment Specialist, Cal Poly Pomona

Additional fee: $40

United in STEMM: Creating Opportunities Across Disciplines

Sunday, June 27, 2021 from 1:00 - 3:00 p.m. EST

The presenters have reimagined opportunities to eliminate persistence and graduation gaps from Colorado State University using institutional data. They will demonstrate collaboration with the Divisions of Academic and Student Affairs towards the success of students of color in STEMM (science, technology, engineering, math, and medicine). United in STEMM is a campus-wide initiative designed to solidify institutional support in creating a deeper sense of belonging, both in colleges and through more intentional connections with alumni and professionals of color.

Presenters: Kacee Collard Jarnot, Student Success Manager, Colorado State University; Bridgette Johnson, Managing Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Student Success, Colorado State University; Melissa Burt, Assistant Dean for Diversity and Inclusion, Walter Scott, Jr. College of Engineering, Colorado State University; Lee Tyson, Research Analyst, Institutional Research, Planning and Effectiveness, Colorado State University; Rickey Frierson, Director of Diversity and Inclusion Programs, Warner College of Natural Resources, Colorado State University; Elias Quiñonez, Manager of Student Life and Diversity, College of Agricultural Sciences, Colorado State University; Lisa Dysleski, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Programs, College of Natural Sciences, Colorado State University; Rushika Perera, Associate Professor in Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Colorado State University

Additional fee: $20

Effectively Designed Emergency Aid Programs Support Student Success

Sunday, June 27, 2021 from 1:00 - 3:00 p.m. EST

This last year shone a light on the importance of emergency aid. Whether your institution has multiple well-coordinated efforts or none in place yet, we would like to help you understand the six pillars of effective emergency aid programs; provide an outline of how to assess your readiness for implementation; and support you taking steps toward development of a program to address your students’ needs. Facilitators from NASPA and Reos Partners will share learnings and resources and host interactive discussions for participants to apply learnings to their own institution and outline next steps to put learnings into action.

Presenters: Omari Burnside, Assistant Vice President for Strategy and Practice; Jess Fan, Consultant, Reos Partners; Amy Geist, Director of Strategic Initiatives, NASPA; Amelia Parnell, Vice President for Research and Policy, NASPA; Monica Pohlmann, Principal, Reos Partners

Additional fee: $20

Approaches to Assessing First-Generation College Student Success

Sunday, June 27, 2021 from 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m EST

Assessment is one of the most critical features of developing and sustaining successful first-generation programs and initiatives. Identifying first-generation college students and their needs as well as documenting and highlighting effective practice is the key to continued institutional support and program sustainability. This session will explore the role of assessment in evaluating first-generation student needs, interaction with programs and services, and learning outcomes. It will also outline a model to organize these assessment activities and discuss strategies for conducting meaningful assessment of both student development and programmatic effectiveness. Session participants will have the opportunity to reflect on the assessment climate on their own campuses and share successful techniques and methods from their own experience.

Presenter(s): Jennifer R. Keup, Director, National Resource Center for The First-Year Experience and Students in Transition, University of South Carolina; Sarah E. Whitley, Senior Director, Center for First-generation Student Success, NASPA

Additional fee: $20

Deliberative Dialogue Forum: What is the Role of Fraternity and Sorority Life in Creating the Campus Community We Want

Sunday, June 27, 2021 from 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. EST

This session offers the opportunity for attendees to participate in democratic deliberation, an approach to engaging in conversation in which participants may have passionately different viewpoints or perspectives, using NASPA’s newly launched issue guide, Fraternity and Sorority Life and the Inclusive Campus: How do we Foster the Campus Community We Want? This pre-conference workshop opportunity is offered at no additional cost.

Presenters: Diana Ali, Associate Director of Policy Research and Advocacy, NASPA; Brent Marsh, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs and Dean of Students, University of Mississippi; Jill Dunlap, Senior Director for Research, Policy, and Civic Engagement, NASPA

No additional fee.

A Dedicated First Scholars and First-gen Forward Pre-Conference Workshop (Invite-Only)

Sunday, June 27, 2021 from 12:00 - 3:00 p.m. EST

This workshop will feature perspectives from senior leaders, insight from institutions leading evidence-based, outcomes-driven initiatives, opportunities for topic-based dialogue, and community building with colleagues equally committed to first-generation efforts. At the heart of both First Scholars and First-gen Forward is the opportunity to share and learn across our talented network, and we are excited to provide this joint gathering for dedicated conversation. For those registering for the conference, First Scholars and First-gen Forward institutions will also have access to networking opportunities.

No additional fee for invited institutions.

Call for Programs

Call for Programs (Now Closed)

We invite you to help shape the conversations at this year’s conferences by submitting your program. The #SSHE21 Conference Advisory Committee encourages proposals sharing evidence-based practices with delivery that will engage participants in fruitful discussions and provide meaningful content to advance institutional efforts. Please note that the CFP has been adjusted to reflect the virtual format. If you have any questions about your submission, please email sshe@naspa.org.

Check out the program submission outline below to learn more about the different sections of the proposal and learning outcomes for each conference.

Extended Deadline: March 19, 2021


Call for Reviewers (Now Closed)

Serving as a program reviewer is a professional development volunteer opportunity that affords you a behind-the-scenes look into the evidence-based practices and promising programs your colleagues intend to showcase at #SSHE21.

Extended Deadline: March 19, 2021


Program Submission Outline

General Outline

Program Submission Outline:

Program Title
Program Abstract
Program Type
- General Interest Session (60 min)
- Learning Lab (30 min)
- Scholarly Paper
- Poster Session
- Pre-conference Workshop (2-hour or 4-four)
Program Outline
Learning Outcomes (1 - 3)
Presenter(s) Information
Conference Selection
- Assessment, Persistence, and Data Analytics Conference (APDA)
- First-generation Student Success Conference (FGSS)
- Dismantling Systemic Barriers to Student Success Conference (DSBC)
Conference Theme Selection
- Click here to view APDA learning outcomes and themes.
- Click here to view FGSS learning outcomes and themes.
- Click here to view DSBC learning outcomes and themes
Professional Compentencies, Content Area, and Intended Audience
Scholarly Paper Upload (if applicable)
Presenter Background

Review NASPA's Program Submission Guidelines for tips on writing a program proposal.  

Please note, the scholarly papers and posters do not need to be finalized or peer-reviewed for consideration. A completed paper or poster that adheres to appropriate citation formats may be required for the accepted conference program proposals.

Call for Programs Worksheet

Call for Programs Worksheet

This document is a snapshot of the Call for Programs (CFP) submission form. Use this worksheet to plan your responses to each of the questions in the CFP, then copy and paste your responses into our online submission form (sign-in to NASPA profile required).

Click here to download worksheet (Word Document; .docx)

Please note, this is NOT how program proposals will be submitted to the conferences. Please do not submit this worksheet.

For questions about proposal submission, including how to use this tool, contact SSHE – sshe@naspa.org.

Schedule at-a-Glance

Schedule subject to change

All times are in Eastern Standard Time (EST)

Saturday, June 26
Sunday, June 27
Monday, June 28
Tuesday, June 29
Wednesday, June 30

Please note: additional registration required to participate in this day’s programming.

1:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Full-day Pre-conference Workshop

  • Many Uses of CAS Standards to Create, Implement, and Assess Programs and Services that Lead to Student Success
1:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Half-day Pre-conference Workshops

  • Re-engaging First-gen Graduate Students: Developing a Post-pandemic Campus Plan
  • Review of Program Reviews
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Half-day Pre-conference Workshops

  • Partnering with Parents and Families of First-generation College Students

Please note: additional registration required to participate in this day’s programming.

1:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Full-day Pre-conference Workshops

  • Assessment & Data Analytics 101: An Introduction
1:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Half-day Pre-conference Workshops

  • United in STEMM: Creating Opportunities Across Disciplines
  • Effectively Designed Emergency Aid Programs Support Student Success
4:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Half-day Pre-conference Workshops

  • Approaches to Assessing First-generation College Student Success
  • Deliberative Dialogue Forum: What is the Role of Fraternity and Sorority Life in Creating the Campus Community We Want
11:00 AM - 12:15 PM

Opening Session

More information coming soon!

12:45 PM - 1:45 PM

Concurrent Session 1

  • Creating a Culture of Assessment
  • Becoming a Storytelling Superhero: Strategies for Communicating Our Value With Data
  • AAC&U’s VALUE Approach and the Assessment of Co-Curricular Learning
  • No Room for Doubt: The Corequisite Imperative
  • Social Class Supports: Scalable Ideas Serve & Sustain Poor and Working-Class Students
  • Degrees When Due: Promoting Institutional Change for Stop-out Reengagement and Completion
  • The Role of the Dean in Advancing First-generation Student Success
  • Inspire to ASPIR2E: Improving Student Success Recruitment and Retention at a Professional Health Science Program
  • Identifying and Adapting Virtual Support Based on First-generation Student Needs
  • Reimagining Campus Mental Health: An Equitable Approach to Teletherapy (Sponsored Session - UWill)
2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Concurrent Session 2

  • Leveraging Data to Advance Equity
  • Charge On, Operation 90%: Increasing FTIC Retention and Enhancing Student Success
  • I Believe in the Little Words: A Story of Why Validation Matters
  • Engaging & Informing Families and Parents of First-generation College Students
  • Building a ‘Campus Family’ to Retain Foster Care Alumni and Homeless Students
  • Viewing NASPA's Public Policy Agenda Through a First-gen Lens
  • First-gen Across Campus: Building Effective Collaborations to Support First-gen Student Success
  • TRIO and First-gen Initiatives: Are We Working Together?
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Exhibit Hall Dedicated Hour

3:15 PM - 3:45 PM

Learning Lab Sessions

  • Increase Retention of Underrepresented Students Using Character Assessments
  • “Write on Target” – Using Data to Customize Messaging to Increase Student Engagement
  • I Matter: How Personalized Outreach Contributes to Strategic Enrollment Goals
  • Residence Life as a Key Partner in Student Transition, Persistence, and Retention
  • Transfer Students Matter: Early Transfer Student Summer Engagement Prior to Fall Matriculation
  • From ‘Dropout’ to ‘Stopout’: Best Practices to Support Students Who Leave School
  • First to Finish: Career Services Empowering First-generation Students to Succeed
  • Supporting First-gen Scholars: Skill-building and Strategic Partnerships
  • Before Diving Into Data: 5 Questions to Ask for ANY Assessment Project
4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Plenary Speaker

D-L Stewart, Ph.D., Professor, Colorado State University; Radical Insights Speaking, Consulting, and Training, LLC

Presentation description coming soon!

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Concurrent Session 3

  • More Than Words: Dismantling Campus Inequities Through Racial Justice Statements Linked to Follow-Up Actions
  • Return from Remote: Using Student Persistence Models to Inform Student Leadership Programs
  • Holistic Approaches to First-generation Engagement in University Settings
  • Peers Supporting First-gen Scholars Through a Holistic Critical Mentoring Model
  • Grad School Guidance: A First-gen Graduate School Mentorship Initiative
  • Crafting a Convincing #CelebrateFirstGen Grant Opportunity Application
  • We Got Y’all: Creating Access Through Strategic Initiatives
  • Graduate First-generation Gathering and Dialogue: Empowering Space to Capture Student Lived Experience
5:15 PM - 6:15 PM

Concurrent Session 4

  • An Analytical Ecosystem to Drive First-Year Success at a Minority Serving Institution
  • It Takes a Village: Uplifting Special Student Populations With Holistic Support
  • Is There Nap Time in College? Supporting Students With Narcolepsy
  • Co-Creating Social Justice Retreats as Anti-Racist Healing Interventions at a Predominantly White Institution
  • Legacy Framework to Bridging the Opportunity Gap for First-generation Students
  • An Asset-Based Approach: Positive Psychology and Mindfulness for First-generation Students
  • Music for Our Souls: Connections to Academic Social and Emotional Learning
  • Amplifying Our Voices: Lessons Learned from @FirstGenDocs
  • At the Intersection: Understanding and Supporting First-Generation Students
6:30 PM - 7:00 PM

Scholarly Paper Presentations

  • Using Event History Analysis to Identify Nursing Student Attrition Risk
  • Dream Chasers: Hip-Hop Organization's Impact on Academic Engagement for Students of Color at HWIs
  • Transitions Through College: Supporting Students in Time to Degree
  • Impacts of Sorority Membership on First-generation College Students: Academic Success and Belonging
  • From Shame to Belonging
  • Matrix of Student Success Information: An Investigation of How College Students Find and Utilize Information for Success
6:30 PM - 8:00 PM

Engagement & Networking Sessions

  • First Scholars Networking Session (Kumospace)
  • Open Networking Space for All (Kumospace)
  • GOOD DOCS Film Screening
  • Center Advocacy Group Meetup (Kumospace)
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Plenary Speaker


Natasha Jankowski, Ph.D.

Charting the Waters of Equitable Redesign: The Roles and Purposes of Data

As student affairs professionals in higher education make sense of the past year and prepare for a different type of Fall semester in a time rocked by racial reckoning, pandemic learning, threats to democracy, unveiling of systemic inequities, pervasive educational barriers, and a myriad of mental health concerns, upon what should we focus to support and serve students (and each other) while advancing educational outcomes? This keynote presents three ideas to inform practice built from the question: What is the purpose of our work? Together, we will discuss with whom student affairs could partner in recovery and healing, how learning through trauma looks different in our data and what can/should be done with such data, and how to reimagine engagement and help seeking. The need is great at this moment in time for responsible and equitable assessment as well as intentional and careful use of data to inform decisions. Not only is there much to be done, but many pitfalls to avoid in lifting up our work and sharing our stories. Prior modeling and assumptions built into data models may no longer have a home in a pandemic learning environment. As such, the opportunity presented by the pandemic to transform educational practice should be met with a reimagining grounded in and oriented by shared purpose that does no further harm. This keynote will explore various paths available to build an equitable educational experience.

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Concurrent Session 5

  • Feel to Heal: Trauma-Informed Supervision in Residence Life and Student Affairs
  • Becoming a Student-Ready Institution: Holistic and Data-Informed Approaches to Understanding Your Unique Student Populations
  • Making Waves: Exploring the Impact of a First-generation Academic Resource Center
  • Reimagining First-generation Student Success
  • Welcome Home: The Efficacy of a First-gen Themed Living Learning Community
  • Providing an Avenue for First-generation College Students to Share Their Voice
  • Engaging First-generation Alumni to Support First-gen, Low-income Students: Challenges, Successes, and Recommendations
  • Catalyzing Connections for Outreach Recruitment & Retention of First-gen Students
  • First-generation Students in the Research: An Annotated Bibliography
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM

Concurrent Session 6

  • Starting From Scratch: Building a Data-Driven Academic Advising Office
  • Mind the Tilde: Overcoming Institutional Linguistic Barriers to Latinx Student Success
  • Reinventing Student Success Storytelling Through Podcasting
  • Chronicles of Struggling Successfully: Black College Women and Barriers to Student Success
  • Developing a High-Impact Career Success Program for First-gen College Students
  • College to Career: Journeys of First-generation Students
  • First-generation of Many: Celebrating and Building Community
  • Becoming First-gen Forward: A Community College Perspective
  • Auditing Institutions of Higher Education to Improve First-generation College Student Success
  • Everyone Needs a Little Help Sometimes (Sponsored Session - Aunt Bertha)
1:30 PM - 2:30 PM

Exhibit Hall Dedicated Hour

1:45 PM - 2:15 PM

Learning Labs

  • The "Murky Middle" Transitions: The Forgotten Transitions in the Student Experience
  • Building a Culture of CARE: Redesigning the Student Experience With Equity in Mind Through a Personalized Learning Model
  • Connecting New Student Orientation & Transition to Student Success
  • Transfer Affinity Groups: Small Communities for Student Success
  • Starting a First-gen Student Organization at Your Campus
  • Inclusive Collaborations: Celebrating First-generation Students and Families
  • Engaging with the Center for First-generation Student Success
  • More than a Statistic: Leveraging Student Survey Responses for Proactive Intervention (Sponsored Session - Anthology)
2:30 PM - 3:30 PM

Concurrent Session 7

  • Don't Wait: Support Student Success by Using Formative Assessments
  • Creating a Trans-Inclusive Gender-Based Housing Process
  • Building STEM Scholars With ReBUILDetroit at University of Detroit Mercy
  • Roadmap to Inclusive Excellence: Culturally Responsive Pedagogy in Higher Education
  • Transcending Multicultural Engagement: Creating Virtual Brave Spaces During Unprecedented Times
  • Please Bother Me!: Supporting First-gen College Students Through Moments of Shame
  • A Space of Belonging: Leveraging the College Library to Support First-gen Students
  • First-Year Virtual Summer Seminars: Improving First-gen and High-Financial Need Students’ Experiences
  • Celebration of Firsts: The Importance of Initiatives Celebrating First-generation Students
  • First-generation Student Success: Findings from National Landscape Analyses on Four-year Institutions and Community Colleges
3:45 PM - 4:45 PM

President's Panel

  • Russell Lowery-Hart, Ph.D., President, Amarillo College
  • Lori S. White, Ph.D., President, DePauw University
  • Richard Gallot, J.D., President, Grambling State University
  • Ellen Junn, Ph.D., President, California State University, Stanislaus

Moderator: Kevin Kruger, Ph.D., President & CEO, NASPA

3:45 PM - 4:45 PM

Concurrent Session 8

  • From One-on-One Conversations to Data Points
  • Student Affairs and Post-Traditional Students: Partners in Progress
  • How Are You Serving Rural Students?
  • Findings from First Scholars Initiative Engagement
  • Putting Our Students "First": Streamlining Services and Enhancing Support for First-generation Students
  • How My Brothers Kept Me: A Narrative Study on First-generation Black Men Who Joined a BGLO at a PWI
  • Supporting Students During COVID-19: Unique Considerations for First-year, Low-income, First-generation Students
5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Concurrent Session 9

  • Dashboards: The Gift and the Curse
  • An Upstream Approach to Supporting Student Success
  • Student Veteran Culture, Identities, and Impacts on Student Success
  • A Tutoring Model That Creates Success for Students and Tutors Alike
  • Mentoring Outside the Classroom: Positioning Graduate Students to Succeed
  • Creating and Sustaining a First-gen Movement at a Large Hispanic-Serving Institution
  • Connecting the First-generation Community Through Digital Technology
  • Developing Leadership: Benefits of Empowering Peer Mentors to Support First-generation College Students
  • Who Are #FirstGen Graduate Students? How Should We Support Them?
  • The Power of Coaching: Improving Student Success at Three Distinct Universities (Sponsored Session - Inside Track)
6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

Sponsor Product Showcase

6:15 PM - 6:45 PM

Poster Sessions

  • Welcoming New Graduate Students During COVID-19: Lessons Learned From Assessing a Virtual Orientation
  • Evaluation Findings and Lessons Learned from Federally Funded STEM Programs at MSIs
  • The Impact of COVID-19 on the Resilience of First-generation College Students
7:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Engagement & Networking Sessions

  • First-gen Forward Networking Session
  • Open Networking Space for All (Kumospace)
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Concurrent Session 10

  • An Experiment We Didn’t Want: Assessment Lessons From an Asterisk Year
  • Using Mixed Methods to Assess Students' Sense of Belonging
  • Creating Career Equity Through LMS Integration
  • Dismantling Mental Health Barriers to First-generation Students’ Success: Research-Based Practices
  • Building Connections, Building Community With Virtual Circles
  • The Power of Stories: Understanding the Intersectional First-gen Lived Experience
  • Supporting, Educating, and Empowering: Proactive Programming to Engage First-generation Students
  • Using Life Design to Increase Cross-Campus Collaboration and Engage First-generation/Low-income (FLI) Students
  • Social Class and Career Trajectories: What Our Students Need to Know!
  • Growing FGCC Efforts at Diverse Institutions
  • Navigating Invisibility and Intersectionality as a First-generation Graduate Scholar
12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Exhibit Hall Dedicated Hour

1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Concurrent Session 11

  • Data-Informed, Data-Informing
  • The Power of Persistence Reports in Shaping Priorities
  • Developing a Sustainable Peer Mentoring Structure for Today’s Transfer Students
  • Accelerating Emergency Assistance Grants to Students in Need
  • Reframing Academic Dismissal for Readmission and Retention
  • Developing Holistic Recruitment & Enrollment Strategies for Underrepresented Students
  • Designing Intentional Technologies for First-generation Students to Navigate Campus Culture and Resources
  • Understanding and Supporting Identity Transition Among First-generation Students
  • California Community Colleges: How El Camino College Responded to the Call for Action by Creating Black First-generation Initiatives
  • I See You! Building a Student’s Confidence Through Sharing Personal Narratives
  • Counseling and Helping:Training First-gen Peer Mentors Using Counseling Techniques
  • How to Supercharge Interventions and Improve Retention with Surveys (Sponsored Session - Macmillan Learning)
2:15 PM - 3:15 PM

Concurrent Session 12

  • Assessment Choices: Moving Beyond the Either/Ors of Assessment Work
  • Steering Student Success at Small Colleges: A Panel Discussion
  • Asian Americans on the Sidelines: An Institutional Analysis of Student Success
  • Student Engagement Experiences at International Branch Campuses
  • First-Generation Professionals in Higher Education: Strategies for the World of Work Panel Session
  • High-Impact Practices for First-generation College Students
  • Beyond the Classroom: Illuminating the Needs of First-generation, Low-income Students of Color
  • A Grounded Theory Model of Advisor Trustworthiness From a First-generation Student Perspective
  • Journal of First-generation Student Success: Perspectives on Publishing Success
  • Honoring the Intersections: Supporting First-generation, Immigrant-origin College Students
3:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Closing Session

Laura I. Rendón, Ph.D., Professor Emerita, University of Texas at San Antonio; Student Advocate, Speaker, Writer, Consultant

Description coming soon!

5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

Meetings & Networking Sessions

  • OTR KC Open Meeting
  • Open Networking Space for All (Kumospace)

Continuing Education

NBCC Logo_New

NASPA has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 5120. A list of sessions 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 12 clock hours for this event. All participants must attend sessions live to earn credit. Home study is not available for the 2021 NASPA Virtual Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education.

To receive credit, please complete a reporting form available here. In addition, you must complete an online evaluation of individual sessions, which will be emailed to you shortly after the conference. A 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. Forms to request this certificate are available here.

For questions regarding continuing education, please contact Teri Gillmor at tgillmor@naspa.org.

See Eligible Sessions

Sponsors and Exhibitors

Interested in exhibiting and sponsorship?  Check out the Sponsor and Exhibitor Application. Have questions? Please contact Kristie Jacobsen Jerde at kjerde@naspa.org or 218-280-7578.

Gold Sponsors

Silver Sponsors

Bronze Sponsors

Cooperating Sponsor

Conference Resources

For Attendees:

For Presenters:

  • Presenter Orientation Recording: Click here to view the recording (CC - closed captioning now available).
  • Presenter Orientation Slides: Click here to view Google Slides.
  • Program Update Form: Please use this Program Update Form to share any presenter(s) information changes/updates.
  • Presentation Slide Template: Please download and use the 2021 NASPA Virtual Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education Presentation Slide Template for your presentation. Click here to view and follow instructions to download from Google Slides to PowerPoint on your computer or copy to your Google account.
  • To support place-conscious practices, the presenter slides template includes helpful information regarding land acknowledgements and resources. In the past, when we gathered for in-person conferences we strived to embody place-conscious practices including land acknowledgements. With the transition to virtual conferences, we are all gathering from vast locations representing many Indigenous lands and we welcome presenters to take the opportunity and time to learn and embrace place-conscious practices.
  • Help Desk Hours: Join us in an open Zoom meeting (link shared with presenters via email) to ask questions and receive support during the following dates and times:
  • June 28 - June 29 from 10:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m. EST
  • June 30 from 10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m. EST

2021 Conference Advisory Committee

The Conference Advisory Committee (CAC), in partnership with the NASPA conference planning staff, provides overall support of the Conferences on Student Success in Higher Education (SSHE), serves as an advocate for the SSHE conferences experience, ensures that conference programming and activities are linked to the learning outcomes of the conferences, and assists with the development of the overall attendee experience.

Assessment, Persistence, and Data Analytics Conference 
Marisol Cardenas, M.S. Cal Poly Pomona
Tim Kresse, M. Ed. Miami University
Kim Kruchen-Spaulding, M. Ed.
University of Colorado Boulder
Pamelyn Shefman, Ph.D.
Alvin Community College
Dismantling Systemic Barriers to Student Success Conference
Carrie Ben-Yisrael Washington State University
Carlos Cruz, Ed.D.
Dallas College
Brendan Greisberger, M.A. The Ohio State University
Martina Martin, Ed.D.
University of Kentucky
Jacob Popovich, Ph.D. Columbus State Community College
First-generation Student Success Conference
Lamesha Brown, Ph.D. St. Cloud Technical & Community College
Whitley Johnson, M.A.Ed
University of Miami
Alicia Sanchez, MBA
Wichita State University
Jennifer Schoen, M. Ed
Northeastern University
Gourjoine Wade, Ed.D.
Grambling State University

Future Conferences

June 2022 Baltimore, Maryland
June 2023 Kansas City, Missouri
June 2024 TBD
June 2025 Denver, Colorado