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Five Minutes with ACHE

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  • November 16, 2018 11:19 AM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    The 80th Annual ACHE Conference and Meeting provided many opportunities for members and guests to engage in meaningful dialogue about the future of continuing higher education.  Dr. Kristen Lee, author of RESET: Make the Most of Your Stress and Mentalligence: A New Psychology of Thinking, opened our conference with a keynote presentation.  Here are her reflections on the conference:


    Burning Bright with ACHE

    It was such an honor to start off ACHE’s 80th conference. The “Keep the Beacon Burning Bright” theme resonates so deeply with me. As educators, we have unprecedented opportunities and challenges, and being able to share lessons learned from my incredible students at Northeastern University’s College of Professional Studies was a true joy.

    The opening quote I shared spurred on a lot of meaningful conversation with so many of you:

    "The illiterate of the twenty-first century
    will not be those who cannot read and write,
    but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn."

    - Alvin Toffler

    I was deeply moved by the stories shared about how you are working to stay nimble and provide meaningful opportunities for students to bring impact in our world. There was such a strong appetite to find ways to embody agility, mindfulness and connection within our respective contexts. It was uplifting hearing the ways the ACHE community is taking this on, and to see the power and potential of our shared vision.

    Education has the power to liberate and transform. My hope is that the time we spent as a group will continue to uplift and motivate us towards change agency and elevating the human condition. There’s so much at stake, and it is energizing to see such a steadfast commitment to keeping the beacon burning bright for all.

    Reflections from Dr. Dorothy Williams, ACHE President 

    I have had the absolute pleasure of getting to know Dr. Kris over the last year, and she is a magnificent person. Not only were we honored to have her as a keynote at our Emerging Leaders Institute in Chicago this past June, but her presence at our ACHE Conference made an impact on so many. I hope you all had the opportunity to chat with her after her keynote while she signed her books for us.

    As President of ACHE this year, I have been thinking a lot about Dr. Kris’s presentation, and she has inspired me and many others to take action. You may ask, take action how? Well, all too often in our busy lives we may tend to forget about ourselves. We all are committed to what we do in higher education, no matter our positions and we may forget the little things that keep us going. Therefore, some of my key take-aways included, as she has shared, to be resilient in our complex world, to engage, and to be mindful. As she states, “Mentalligence helps us find the thinking and behavioral agility to work towards better outcomes for all.”


  • November 09, 2018 9:29 AM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    Autumn is a season that represents great change.  As chlorophyll deconstructs in the leaves of our trees; we see the landscape anew.  The mountains in my region alight with red, yellow and orange color. Fall is also the time when we await election results, bringing with them the possibility of great change.  And this year, with the release of the RFP for the ACHE home office, we’re on the precipice of transformation within our organization. As I’ve been reflecting upon this transition, I’ve discovered there is a lot to learn from students about what it’s like to successfully navigate change. Here’s what they’ve been teaching me:

    • Pure honesty is both shocking and refreshing.  I have a student in my class that has a disability that limits his ability to filter, shade, or spin his comments.  All of his responses are direct and there is little doubt about his stance on any issue we may be discussing.  This student has emboldened his classmates however.  Because he is so direct, he has given his classmates the freedom to be similarly straightforward and forthcoming.  As we begin a transition to a new home office, I hope you will feel free to approach me and other ACHE leaders about the ideas you have for our organization.  Give us honest feedback about what you think we do well, what needs to change, and how we can best serve your needs as members of this organization.  As leaders in ACHE, we find that kind of feedback energizing.  
    • Learning about yourself can be hard. This semester I’m working with first year students who have spent a lot of the semester challenging themselves.  Some have discovered that their intended major isn’t going to work for them.  Some have had entrenched beliefs rattled.  Some have discovered they loved something completely out of their comfort zone. And many are finding it overwhelming to define themselves outside of the confines of their nuclear families.  Our organization will face similar challenges as we move through this new change process.  We’ll learn some difficult things about ourselves; we may redefine our mission; and we will certainly look for ways we can grow membership and appeal to higher educational professionals that have not previously looked to ACHE to fulfill their professional development needs. Dee Fink defines learning as change and significant learning as change that is sustained over time.  We’ll need to engage in a process in the coming months that encourages just this kind of sustained learning.
    • A little experience goes a long way. This summer I taught in a grant-funded bridge program for students of color.  The program strives to give students a jumpstart on the first year of college.  It also provides students with continued support throughout the first two years.  We studied together for three hours each day for three weeks – we bonded. While my commitment to the work of the grant was complete at the conclusion of the course, I wanted to continue to spend time with these students and track their progress.  I host dinner for these students once a month.  During these meals, students in the program tell me about how much the summer program helped them be prepared for fall coursework, get to know the campus, and have a built-in support system. This small amount of experience has really helped them be better students.  Similarly, ACHE past-presidents have agreed to help the organization through the home office transition.  We are so lucky that so many past-presidents remain actively involved in the organization and care deeply about its success.  With the leadership of the executive team and the experience of the council of past-presidents, I am quite sure that the organization will be stronger in years to come.
    • Abundant laughter is a really good thing. Each year at mid-term, I ask my students to tell me what we should start, stop, and continue doing in the course.  This year several students said, “Continue laughing abundantly.” For me, one of the joys of working with ACHE over the years has been the strong collegial relationships I have formed with colleagues from across the country.  I have also appreciated that the organization, while taking seriously the important work of serving the higher education needs of adult and non-traditional students, has also been a place where we can laugh together and celebrate together.  In a year of change, maintaining this sense of collegiality is more important than ever.  I know we’ll be laughing together a great deal as we move forward.
    • And finally, we’re better together! Research about belongingness is becoming more and more pervasive in the literature about student success.  I try to cultivate a sense of belonging in my classroom.  I come early to class and mingle with students as they arrive.  I ask students about writing they have done in class.  I spend a little time every Friday just asking students about their lives.  We play games together where they work in various groups and get to know one another.  Part of the reason for this focus on belonging, is because navigating change is easier when you have a team of support.  My students can navigate the changes they are experiencing in the first year because they have faculty who care about them, peer mentors who are devoted to them, and one another to lean on.  As we navigate change in ACHE, it will be important to be able to count on one another.  After the recent Newport conference, it is clear that I need ACHE.  The organization helps me better serve my institution and my students.  Each year I leave the autumn conference feeling refreshed, energized and ready to take on new challenges in the organizations.  Because ACHE has a “better together” philosophy, we can all use this period of transition to make the organization stronger.

    If we keep these principles in mind, I know that in October 2019, we’ll be better next fall.

    Amy Johnson
    ACHE President Elect

  • November 02, 2018 2:04 PM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    It was such a pleasure to meet with so many of you at our 80th Annual Conference held in Newport, Rhode Island earlier this month! From our membership, visiting organizations and our exhibitors, the energy, the ideas, the camaraderie and more are what makes ACHE such an incredible organization. It is all of you!!!! 

    As I begin my presidency, I am honored to follow in the footsteps of Dr. Boozang and others who have preceded me. For while this role is about leadership, it is also about teamwork. The upcoming year will bring new initiatives, programming and more. And as shared in Newport, our 2019 Annual Conference will be held in Denver, Colorado, October 14-16, 2019.

    We are well into the fall season with many of us experiencing the changing colors. And with the changing seasons come other changes as well. In January 2019, the University of Oklahoma will no longer serve as our ACHE home office. We greatly appreciate the commitment and support that Dr. Belinda Biscoe, Dr. Nina Barbee, and so many others at the home office have given to ACHE over these years.

    As a result, a Request for Proposal (RFP) for a new home office will be sent out to all membership institutions within the next week so we can continue on our path of success. I ask for you to contact your institutional leadership to determine if there is interest at your respective institution. Please look for the RFP information in your inbox. We have an RFP committee that will review the RFPs as we move forward in this new direction.

    As stated on our website, “As an organization of colleges, universities, and individuals, we encourage professional development, research and exchange of information for its members and continuing higher education as a means of enhancing and improving society.” This new season we are going through is exemplary of that statement and we look forward to working together to continue the great work of this wonderful organization.



    I look forward to an exciting year!

    ACHE President 2019


  • October 26, 2018 9:00 AM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)


    Keeping the Beacon of Continuing Education Burning Bright
    was full of collegial networking, professional learning, and fun!

    Click here or on any of the pictures below, which are just a sampling of the photos available, to see the full 2018 ACHE Conference Photo Album.

  • October 19, 2018 3:00 PM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    What a wonderful 80th Annual Conference last week in Newport! The weather cooperated, and attendees fully took advantage of the local sites, from classic Americana to tennis and yachting. Most importantly, we enjoyed a wonderful program of keynote speakers and concurrent sessions over our three days together.

    Highlights from Keynote Speakers

    Dr. Kristen Lee (Northeastern University) started off the conference with an energizing and affirming message for our profession, encouraging us to Burn Bright: Stay Agile, Mindful, and Connected in Today’s Complex Educational Arena. Her message acknowledged the pace and demands of the contemporary higher education workplace, and focused on the importance of self-care and mindfulness to prevent burn-out and fatigue.

    Andrew Magna of The Learning House presented the findings of the inaugural Online Learning Survey of our member institutions, providing insights on the trends evident among our students, emerging programs of interest, and the future of online education. Andrew’s presentation was particularly valuable in aligning what we think we know with what nearly 100 member institutions reported.  Take a look at the 2018 Report!

    Nick Emerita (Southern New Hampshire University) rounded out our keynotes with Shaking Hands with the Unknown to Drive Impact. Nick’s broad experience in federal government and international affairs contributes to a unique perspective in higher education and creating transformational opportunities for the students we serve.

    Other Highlights

    What do the Ghosts of Newport, Wine Tasting, Quilts, and Rubber Ducks have in common? They were among the fundraising activities that the planning committee posted for ACHE scholarships. All the activities were a great success, and we thank the attendees for participation.

    Finally, thank you for the generosity of our participants who donated books and toys for Child Life Services at Hasbro Children’s Hospital in Providence. Dozens of items were delivered this week to Hasbro, and our donation will be included in the libraries and playrooms throughout the hospital.

    Thank You

    It’s been an honor serving as president of ACHE over the last twelve months, and I am excited to support President Dorothy Williams as she begins her tenure. Our organization plays a vital role in the leadership and professional development of our membership; both regionally and nationally, we are thriving will continued interest from new and emerging professionals in our field. 

    Thank you to the numerous people who have supported me throughout the year: my colleagues on the executive committee, Clare Roby, Amy Johnson, and Dorothy Williams; our board members; and our team at the OU home office, with special thanks for Drs. Nina Barbee, Belinda Biscoe and Bruce Busby for their tireless work on behalf of the organization.

    It’s been a true privilege serving you, and representing our organization.


    Yours in ACHE,

    Bill Boozang, Ed.D.
    ACHE Past-President, 2019

  • October 05, 2018 9:00 AM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    It's almost time!

    Keeping the Beacon of Continuing Education Burning Bright
    is right around the corner.

    To get you in the spirit, we are excited to reveal this year's special
    Fun'Raising raffle, a handmade quilt: Turning the Tide
    (Award-Winning Artist: Tammy Keefer).

    The artist tells us she has kept something "hidden" in these photos as a surprise for when we see it in person in Newport.

  • September 28, 2018 2:32 PM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

  • September 21, 2018 8:37 AM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    ACHE is pleased to announce the
    2018 Grant and Scholarship Winners

    Kerry Morrell, Curry College

    Cornelia Trahan, The University of Rhode Island

    Trey Schruff, Middle Tennessee State University

    Leslie Brezena, Regis University

    Rebecca (Becky) Hicks, Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma


         Bookmark the Conference Website:

          Follow Conference Updates on Twitter: #ACHENewport



    Registration is waiting on you!

    Register Today so you don't miss out on early rates!  Early registration deadline is September 22.


    Newport Marriott Hotel

    Reserve your hotel room now.
    Conference rates are valid until September 15 or until all rooms are reserved, whichever comes first.



    Conference Website

    Keep up with conference announcements, FAQs, and updates on the ACHE 2018 Conference Website!


    Concurrent Sessions

    The Concurrent Session details are available in the Schedule and Sessions menus of the Conference Website. If you create a login, you can mark and save the sessions you want to attend, creating your own personalized schedule for the conference. Your personalized schedule will then be accessible throughout the conference on your mobile device.

    Give back through the ACHE Service Project.

    Make a child's world come to life when you donate a book. Bring a new or gently used book to include in the ACHE 2018 Service Project, benefiting the children of Rhode Island.



    Fun'Raising Tours

    Participate in one or both of the grants and scholarships Fun'Raising Tours. Learn more and register.


    Fun Things to Do and See

    A variety of suggestions for how to use your free time in and around Newport have been added to the
    Conference Website.

  • September 14, 2018 5:04 PM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

    After Hours Fun'Raising Tours

    What do you have planned for the evening hours each 
    night of the conference?  Did you say, "Nothing?"  

    Well, do we have a deal for you?!?!?! 

    Buy your tickets to participate in the 
    ACHE Conference Fun'Raising Tours!

    Each year, ACHE holds a Fun'Raising drive as a part of the Annual Conference to raise money for grants and scholarships.  All of the proceeds go toward supporting the educational needs of graduate students studying in adult and continuing higher education.  Help us reach our goal of $3,000 to help empower the best and brightest students to become beacons for our future.

    A variety of Fun'Raising events will be held throughout the conference.  Keep your eyes and ears open for all the ways you can make a Fun'Raising donation.  One of those is participating in Newport culture through local tours on Monday and Tuesday night. 


    Newport Historic Ghost Tour

    Newport Vineyards Tour
    and Wine Tasting

    What: Newport Historic Ghost Tour
    When: Monday at 7:30 p.m.
    Where: Walking tour departs from the Newport Marriott
    Cost: $25 (includes a donation to ACHE Grants and Scholarships)

    Buy Your Ticket for Newport Historic Ghost Tour Now

    What: Newport Vineyards Tour and Wine Tasting
    When: Tuesday at 5:00 p.m.
    Where: Carpools depart from the Newport Marriott
    Cost: $50 (includes a donation to ACHE Grants and Scholarships) 

    Buy Your Ticket for Newport Vineyards Tour and Wine Tasting Now

    Benefits for you:

    • Fun!
    • Friends!
    • Tour of Newport's excellent adventures!

    Benefits for your ACHE colleagues:

    • Scholarship funds!
    • Grant funds!
    • Your amazing personality on a tour of Newport's excellent adventures!


         Bookmark the Conference Website:

          Follow Conference Updates on Twitter: #ACHENewport

      Registration is waiting on you!

    Register Today so you don't miss out on early rates! Early registration deadline is September 22.
        Newport Marriott Hotel

      Reserve your hotel room now.
      Conference rates are valid until 
      September 17 or until all rooms are reserved, whichever comes first.

        Conference Website

      Keep up with conference announcements, FAQs, and updates on the ACHE 2018 Conference Website!

        Concurrent Sessions

      The Concurrent Session details are available in the Schedule and Sessions menus of the Conference Website. If you create a login, you can mark and save the sessions you want to attend, creating your own personalized schedule for the conference. Your personalized schedule will then be accessible throughout the conference on your mobile device.

      Give back through the ACHE Service Project.

      Make a child's world come to life when you donate a book. Bring a new or gently used book to include in the ACHE 2018 Service Project, benefiting the children of Rhode Island.

        Fun Things to Do and See 

      A variety of suggestions for how to use your free time in and around Newport have been added to the
       Conference Website.

    • September 07, 2018 1:38 PM | ACHE Home Office (Administrator)

      Greetings, ACHE Colleagues,

      As we approach the 80th ACHE Annual Conference in Newport, I have time to reflect on my experiences leading this wonderful organization over the past year.  The exchanges of ideas, consultations on our common problems of practice, new connections, and friendships have continued to inspire and energize me.  Our field of continuing education is vital to the future of our institutions, as we strive to offer opportunity, affordability, and access to post-secondary education and transform lives through lifelong learning.

      In turn, the mission, purpose, and vision of ACHE is vital to continuing education professionals’ continued development as practitioners, as the opportunity that the organization affords us to network, share best practice, and collaborate is unique to ACHE.  In light of my travels over the last year, I have come to define what characteristics make our membership, and in turn, our organization unique:

      Commitment: Through countless conversations, presentations, and exchanges, the membership of ACHE exhibits a singularly focused commitment to student success and program quality.  Our network of professionals is tireless in ensuring every student seizes the opportunity to thrive through our institutions’ delivery of workshops, certificates, and degrees. We empower our students with the skills and credentials needed to succeed in today’s world.

      Dynamism: The institutions and systems which we serve, and the programs which we deliver, need change in order to successfully engage on a promise of contemporary, real-world skills meeting today’s market demand. As such, we continue to grow and evolve as professionals, enthusiastically leveraging every opportunity to incorporate new knowledge, exchange ideas, and better our practice.

      Innovation: At many of our institutions, the continuing education division is ground zero for new pedagogy, process, and delivery formats.  ACHE professionals reject the notion of the status quo, and seek to utilize new technology, creative solutions, as well as identify new content areas where education and training are in-demand.   Our central priorities remain in creating student-centered, educationally sound environments where optimal learning takes place. We embrace new ideas and remain open to change, which results in student success and high-quality education.

      If you’re a long time member of ACHE, I assume that you’ve seen these qualities in action as well. If you’re new to ACHE, join us in Newport, as every session, workshop, keynote, and conversation showcases these characteristics, which define the tremendous benefit that ACHE participation affords.

      Here’s to a wonderful Fall semester, and I’m counting the days until we meet in Rhode Island.


      Yours in ACHE,

      Bill Boozang, Ed.D.
      ACHE President, 2018
      University of New England

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