2022 AMA Symposium for the Marketing of Higher Education

National Harbor, MD + Virtual

Sunday (All Times in EST) | National Harbor, MD

12:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Interactive Workshop

Combining Marketing and Communication for Long-Lasting Brand Impact

Although they’re often blended together in the name of a single department, marketing and communication are distinct disciplines. Their essential skills, preferred channels and ultimate purpose often differ. What they have in common are the audiences they seek to impact or influence on behalf of a brand. Campuses need both marketing and communications professionals to collaborate to achieve institutional goals. Using University of Montana data from its ongoing strategic partnership with Campus Sonar, we’ll examine how audience insights, content repurposing and the marketing-communication continuum combine for maximum brand impact and memorability with the people you care about most.

Binti Harvey

Scripps College

HE Teresa Valerio Parrot

Teresa Valerio Parrot

TVP Communications

Jenny Petty

University of Montana

Katlin Swisher

Campus Sonar

Interactive Workshop

Data-Driven Analytics Presentation - Template You Can Use!

Are your marketing campaigns effective? Is your reporting streamlined? Could you quickly explain the efficacy of your programs? Find out how the St. Edward’s marketing team leveraged knowledge outside of Higher Ed to create a less-than-25-page executive summary that is digestible, easy to read and easy to update! We share our process so that you, too, can create amazing Data-Driven Analytics Presentations and wow your team. Learn about our turnkey approach that summarizes big wins, key stats, major takeaways and next steps across our marketing plan. Join our session to see the final product and share your own best practices!

Christie Campbell

St. Edward's University

Jennie Sutherland

St. Edward's University

Interactive Workshop

Getting the Most Bang for Your Marketing Buck with Project Management

As Higher Ed Marketers, you have to juggle multiple priorities in multiple media channels from stakeholders across your campus — all while balancing budgets, schedules, scopes and the quality of the products. How do you ensure you make the most of your and your team’s efforts? How do you reduce the frequency of rework, missed deadlines and routine last-minute changes? One way to become more efficient and effective is to implement a formalized project management process. In this workshop, led by a higher-ed-marketer-turned-project-management-expert, you’ll learn about the benefits of project management as a discipline, how to avoid common project pitfalls, what to look for in a best-fit project management information system, and hear a case study from a Higher Ed marketing department about how they successfully implemented and use project management on their campus. With this information in hand, you’ll be able to begin transforming your department into a project management powerhouse!

Lindsay Nyquist

Fort Lewis College

Erik Rueter

Erik Rueter

American Marketing Association

2:30 pm - 5:30 pm
Interactive Workshop

Unleashing Potential: Talent Management and Career Development Strategies for Your Team – and You!

The market has gone through a whirlwind of a year, as individuals contemplate the next stages of their career journeys, whether within the organization or elsewhere. As higher education leaders, you have the opportunity to create a workplace environment that will attract top talent, engage your team and motivate individuals to stay.

Bringing best practices from across the field, we’ll review strategies around recruitment, retention and engagement, specifically for marketing and communications teams.

Through both presentation and collaboration with other attendees, you’ll walk away with tangible initiatives that you can implement with your team and in your own career journey.

During the last hour of this workshop, attendees are invited to have 1:1 confidential networking conversations with Julie and Vanessa. Bring a challenge you’re facing with your team, your resume for review, or an open-mind to talk about your career.

Julie Ried

Julie Ried

The Ward Group

Vanessa Theoharis

Vanessa Theoharis

The Ward Group

Interactive Workshop

Social Content Curated by Your Students: Why It Matters and How to Do It

Interns, student-workers, ambassadors, influencers. Whatever title you give them, students are extremely valuable teammates, collaborators and communicators. This workshop will help you work out how best to develop a solid student ambassadors program and make the most out of students’ unique voices and perspective in whatever capacity fits your needs and resources.

Anice Rodrigues Barbosa

Wheaton College

Yasin Id-Deen

UC Berkeley

Alex Mowrey

Alex Mowrey

University of Pittsburgh

Acacia O'Connor

Acacia O'Connor

University of Pittsburgh

Ashley Schroeder

Colorado State University

5:30 pm - 6:00 pm

First-Timer Orientation

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Welcome Reception

Monday (All Times in EST) | National Harbor, MD

7:00 am - 7:45 am

Harnessing Mindfulness and Movement for Presence and Productivity

Start your morning with an interactive session packed with mindfulness and movement.

You’ll learn why intentional mindfulness and movement are beneficial (spoiler: research shows they work!), and how to integrate easy-to-do exercises throughout your day right at your desk. Designed to be performed without need for workout clothes or gear, these guided exercises help reduce stress and anxiety, hone your ability to focus, increase productivity and build resilience. Incorporate them into your daily routine – and even share them with your team – to collectively improve overall health, energy, inspiration and collaboration.

Participate on Monday, Tuesday or both: it’s the same session each day.

Holly Duncan

Converse University

7:30 am - 8:30 am


8:30 am - 6:00 pm
8:30 am - 10:00 am

Higher Ed Marketer of The Year Award Ceremony

8:30 am - 10:00 am

Keynote: The Cube of Creativity—Why Adding Constraints Sparks Innovation, Action & Increases Enrollment

We’re burned out.

It’s been a looooong few years. We felt the constraints of working from home, virtual happy hours, and virtual classes. We’ve had to navigate COVID-19 communications while we work to attract new students. For some, all these constraints have us wondering if we’re doing what we want to do?

For others, these constraints became their fuel for growth and evolution. If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that constraints breed creativity.

In this exhilarating and inspiring 60-minute session, Andrew Davis will break down the five creative limitations you can add to any initiative to drive better outcomes.

You’ll learn how one non-profit turned its shutdown into millions of dollars in donations. Andrew will reveal how a small bet with massive restraints resulted in a best-selling book. He’ll show you how one business beat the pandemic by snooping through old SEC filings.

More importantly, you’ll walk away ready to apply intelligent constraints to your creative work: limitations that result in more innovation, less burnout, and significant success.

Are you ready to embrace the constraints?

Andrew Davis

Marketing & Customer Experience Keynote Speaker & Author

10:15 am - 11:15 am

Reducing Digital Engagement Amnesia in Higher Ed

Digital Engagement Amnesia: The repeated engagements that you have with your constituents where you act as though each of those interactions is the first time you’ve engaged with them, even though you’ve been engaging with them you for months, years and sometimes decades. As marketers, we’ve all been guilty of this at some stage. Sending out batch-and-blast email, using static web content, or asking for the same information in a form that you’ve already captured before. It negatively affects how your constituents view your university brand and the outcomes you aim to achieve.

In this session, we’ll explore why the brand message of a University alone can’t overcome Digital Engagement Amnesia, how corporate marketers overcome it, and how marketers in Higher Ed can address it.

Rob Zaebst

Strategic Marketing Industry Advisor, Salesforce

Yield of Dreams

If you build it, they will come. Research shows that students apply to 12-15 colleges on average, causing many institutions to see a recent rise in applications. But not all institutions are seeing that rise translate to enrollment. The University of Pittsburgh, in partnership with MediaCross, will share how they swing for the fences during yield, building a multi-channel, highly personalized approach to engaging admitted students. You’ll gain insight into the tactics we’ve tested (including Messenger, Snapchat, TikTok campaigns and more) and how we use data for year-over-year optimization that continually leads to increases in enrollment.

Rashida Dinehart

MediaCross, Inc.

Molly Swagler

University of Pittsburgh

Turning the Ship: Rebranding While Navigating Towards Recruitment

AHOY! The seas were rough and the USS Iowa was headed into a falling student demographic storm. Batten down the hatches and come aboard to see how a partnership between Enrollment Management and Strategic Communications helped captain this large (ironically land-locked) public university towards safer waters through a new national brand strategy to attract students and position itself as a destination university. Learn how we developed a strategy anchored in recruitment, facilitated national high school focus groups to test brand creative, all while steering around campus politics and building campus buy-in.

Jessica Corliss

The University of Iowa

Scott Fiddelke

The University of Iowa

From Made to Making: Healing through Branding

The University of Montana has weathered a number of storms: a reputational crisis, a dramatic dip in enrollment and challenging political dynamics. Add deep-seated cynicism from internal stakeholders when it comes to branding and it was no surprise that the campus became more defined by its troubles than its deep history, service to the state of Montana or academic rigor. This session will focus on how brand building can bridge a painful past with a hopeful future through healthy coalition and community building, strong partnerships and a philosophy of inclusion while delivering an authentic, differentiated brand platform.

Jenny Petty

University of Montana

Kevin Tyler


11:30 am - 1:00 pm

Buffet Lunch and Networking

1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Infusing Student Voice Into Your Content Strategy

Students expect brands–and, by extension, their institutions–to be easy-to-understand, represent diverse viewpoints and be authentic in all communications. At the same time, higher-ed marketers find themselves responsible for managing more content channels and more communications than ever before. So, how can mar-comm pros overcome these challenges and deliver consistent, student-centered touchpoints? By embedding student voice into their content strategy. Presenters will share a framework for recharging your communication channels by collaborating with students, knowing their concerns, removing noise and keeping them on the path to success. Social media, content and creatives of all levels will find this presentation especially helpful, but all attendees can benefit from the material.

David Miller

University of Arizona

Ivy Morris

University of Arizona

Emily Stulz

University of Arizona

How to Get Students to Pay Attention to Your Unique Brand

We’re in the age of authentic, humanized and transparent marketing. Learn how your institution can earn the trust of students, present and future, by understanding what drives their decisions on a deeper level and personalize your outreach. We will hear from 3 speakers on the following topics:

Applying Awareness-Based Marketing to Your College Recruitment Strategy (Presented by Epicosity)

Modern student recruitment strategies require personalization in order to engage with target audiences. Awareness-based marketing strategies meet the students where they are and deliver valuable messaging unique to the student’s stage in the decision-making process

Be Authentic! The Importance of Keeping it Real (And How to Do It) (Presented by Digital Pulp)

Our research has consistently revealed that prospective audiences crave authenticity. The current generation of prospective students expect marketing gloss, but they’re trying to get below the surface and gain a deeper and more grounded understanding of the institutions they’re considering. When an institution is able to effectively communicate an authentic experience, the effect can be remarkable. In this session, we’ll explore what authenticity means for the current generation, its key elements, the ways an institution of higher education can be more authentic, and examples that demonstrate the difference.

5 Questions For Your Digital Agency Presented by Glacier (Presented by Glacier)

Digital marketing agencies are a dime a dozen and each one claims to be the best, so how can you make sure YOURS is delivering on its promises? Glacier’s worked exclusively in higher education for ten years and will tell you what questions to ask and, more importantly, what answers you need from your digital advertising partner. Audience trends, channels to leverage, and creative that gets engagement, that’s just the start! Join us as we delve deeper than CTRs and CPM’s and give you the tools to know if your digital partner is delivering what you need!

Sam Thorson

Growth Strategist, Epicosity

Gene Lewis

CEO + CCO, Digital Pulp

Brian Loube

President, Digital Pulp

Jamie Pragnell

Account Manager, Glacier

RIT Scores a Victory with a Game-Changing Strategy

There’s an abundance of data focused on the increasing role of games in the lives of college students—be it educational, experiential, or entrepreneurial. At RIT, we conducted a rigorous discovery process to understand the precise differentiation of games. This inventory of all things gaming revealed a strong breadth of offerings, depth of experience and a profound interconnectedness driven by culture, academics and outcomes. The result? A compelling positioning strategy and fun creative expression illustrating how and why students can make, study, publish and play games at RIT better than anywhere else.

Cassandra Nickels

Associate Vice President for Marketing Strategy Rochester Institute of Technology

HE Speaker Kin Sejpal

Kin Sejpal

University of Redlands

Brian Wetherby

Rochester Institute of Technology

Driving Successful EDI Strategy Through Effective Change Management Communications

As the world grappled with the murder of George Floyd, campuses across the country began to take a more comprehensive look at what inclusivity and equity truly meant in their communities. Spurred—in part—by the events of 2020, the leadership of the David Eccles School of Business and the University of Utah undertook a deep reimagining of what equity, inclusion and diversity means.

This conversation will explore the role that communications and marketing play in helping to develop a compelling vision of EDI, foster buy-in, create transparency, establish milestones and shift the conversation into one focused on proactive change.

Sheena McFarland

University of Utah David Eccles School of Business

Chris Nelson

University of Utah

Ashley Northington

RW Jones Agency

Sean Rossall

RW Jones Agency

Measuring and Improving Attention Capture and Maintenance

As the enrollment cliff approaches and as prospective students become more sophisticated, your website is more critical than ever before. Glitzy hero videos, trite animations and overblown content strategies alone won’t cut it any more. We’re not just competing with other schools’ websites, we are competing with a much more elusive challenger, one we know about but too often ignore: attention.

This session will offer attendees tools to measure and improve their marketing material’s effectiveness through the lens of neurodesign an emerging field of design practice that accounts for how our brains are wired to create designs that promote simplicity emote joy and drive action. As marketers we’ve always measured performance with several rulers or heuristics and the neurodesign measures we’ll share are a supplement not a replacement for these tools.

HE Speaker Deborah Kohl

Deborah Kohl

University of Baltimore

Andres Zapata

Founder and Executive Vice President, idfive

2:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Break: Exhibit Hall

2:30 pm - 3:30 pm

r/RedditReport: Utilizing Reddit to Engage Diverse Audiences

Affectionately known as the front page of the internet, Reddit offers millions of online communities for users (more than 52 million daily active users worldwide) to explore focused on specific interests, topics and trends. With the average Redditor spending 10 minutes or more on the platform per visit, users are eager to learn more and engage further with a variety of content. Learn how the University of Georgia utilizes this extremely popular platform to promote faculty research around the world, drive engagement to owned channels and build diverse audiences.

Rod Guajardo

University of Georgia

Insights From Today's College Students and Emerging Industry Trends

Data-driven marketing is enabling colleges to make better informed decisions to connect with today’s students. With access to clear, measurable and emotional identifiers, this information can help forecast your next marketing strategy to make the most impact. We will hear from 3 speakers on the following topics:

The State of the American College Student (Presented by Fuseideas)

Dennis Franczak, CEO of Fuseideas, and Erin Francis-Cummings, President & CEO of Destination Analysts, will present the findings from their annual national survey of prospective and current college students. In its second year of fielding, this timely research shares critical trends built upon benchmarks established in 2021, providing insights on students’ personal motivations for choosing an institution, as well as identifying key emotional and behavioral factors impacting students today in a post-pandemic society.

Audience Centric Marketing For Any Campus: Data and Insights from STREAM (Presented by Campus Sonar)

Campus Sonar’s consultants will review multiple years of industry trends data and provide insights to help marketing leaders make the case for increased digital/social investment, as well as suggestions specific to both large and small/medium campuses.

From A to Gen Z: Catering to the International Students of Today (Presented by Unibuddy)

In this session, we’ll share our machine learning-powered analysis of millions of messages that showcase what students truly care about, when discussions are happening, and how those topics differ based on individual demographics. We’ll also share success stories from our 500+ university partners to illustrate what all of this means for institutions like yours. Attendees will come away with a fresh, new perspective on the perspectives of Gen Z students, and a surefire method for their team to secure those insights autonomously.

Liz Gross

CEO, Campus Sonar

Alexa Yow

University Partnership Manager, Unibuddy

Dennis Franczak

Founder and CEO of Fuseideas

Erin Francis-Cummings

President & CEO of Destination Analysts

The CMO of the Future: The Chief Constituent Officer

What if higher ed considered an even broader strategic role for the chief marketing officer position that also led the advancement function and served as a “chief constituent officer”? This session will explore and make a case for this unconventional path as a logical direction for senior marketing leaders and their institutions. Three senior leaders who are serving or have served in such a role—coming from a marketing and communications background to lead an integrated advancement model—will provide insights on the value and opportunity it has unlocked for their institutions through a full-spectrum view of their constituents.

Mary Gresch

University of Washington

Binti Harvey

Scripps College

Rob Zinkan


The One KPI to Rule Them All

Every campaign needs a measurement strategy, but not all metrics are created equal. Valdosta State and other institutions found that keeping one particular key performance metric—cost per enrolled student—in the forefront of their measurement strategy allowed them to understand how their campaign performed at every step of the funnel. In this session, the Valdosta team, along with their partners at VisionPoint Marketing, will show how to accurately measure this crucial KPI and use it to guide and optimize your digital and traditional channel selection, messaging and creative choices throughout the life of your campaign.

Jamie Ballinger

University of Maine

Dana Cruikshank

VisionPoint Marketing

3:45 pm - 4:45 pm


Join us for robust, peer-to-peer conversations on the most pressing topics for higher education marketers today. Enjoy all the benefits only possible with real-time, face-to-face connections and collaboration.

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Keynote: Presidents' Perspectives on the Role of Marketing and Communications in Higher Education

More than ever before, presidents are relying on their marketing and communications teams, and especially their senior-most marcom officer, for insights and guidance to navigate the changing and increasing expectations for university leaders. A panel of presidents, moderated by Teresa Valerio Parrot, will discuss what comes next and how marcom can help them achieve their visions for the industry’s future.

The perspectives of these presidents are shaped by the historic firsts each represents. Seth Bodnar, University of Montana, is the first nontraditional president, Reginald DesRoches is Rice University’s first Black and first immigrant president, Vincent Rougeau serves as College of the Holy Cross’s first lay and Black president, and Tania Tetlow was selected as the first lay and woman president for Fordham University.

Seth Bodnar

University of Montana

Reginald DesRoches

Rice University

Vincent Rougeau

Holy Cross

Tania Tetlow

Fordham University

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm

Networking Reception

Tuesday (All Times in EST) | National Harbor, MD

7:00 am - 7:45 am

Harnessing Mindfulness and Movement for Presence and Productivity

Start your morning with an interactive session packed with mindfulness and movement.

You’ll learn why intentional mindfulness and movement are beneficial (spoiler: research shows they work!), and how to integrate easy-to-do exercises throughout your day right at your desk. Designed to be performed without need for workout clothes or gear, these guided exercises help reduce stress and anxiety, hone your ability to focus, increase productivity and build resilience. Incorporate them into your daily routine – and even share them with your team – to collectively improve overall health, energy, inspiration and collaboration.

Participate on Monday, Tuesday or both: it’s the same session each day.

Holly Duncan

Converse University

7:30 am - 8:30 am


8:30 am - 5:15 pm
8:30 am - 9:45 am

Keynote: How We Live the Values We Say Within Our Sphere of Influence

Is your university living the mission and core values that your teams’ are communicating? Is your diversity statement performative or are you faking it until you make it? Working hard to make it a reality but falling short with no real traction in your diversity, inclusion and equity initiatives?

Culture is under a microscope these days. Students, faculty, staff, donors – they all expect the institutions they support to have values that align with what’s important to them. So how can an institution with so many different stakeholders with different viewpoints and experiences determine when to speak up, when to take a stand, when to make a change or when to do nothing? Join me as I unpack this challenge that institutions are facing all over the country and how to fix it.

Shelley Willingham

The Diversity Movement

10:00 am - 11:00 am


Join us for robust, peer-to-peer conversations on the most pressing topics for higher education marketers today. Enjoy all the benefits only possible with real-time, face-to-face connections and collaboration.

11:15 am - 12:15 pm

What Does 2022 Mean for Education in 2030

Education no longer has the luxury to simply speculate on the upcoming year. The tectonic shift of the last two years has demonstrated why we must look five, 10, even 20 years ahead to build for the future. What can we learn from tumult and disruption? How can education come out better for it? Google will share insights from third-party research and partnerships across the industry on how the value proposition of the learning institution must evolve as students become savvier and more outcome driven. In this conversation, and we will illustrate how education can:

  •   Elevate curriculum design and empower credential stacking
  •   Enhance the classroom and create unique learning experiences
  •   Expand access by investing in more robust digital infrastructure and functionality

Alexandra Eusner

Head of Industry, Education, Google

John Farrar

Industry Director for Education at Google

Claudia Howard

Head of Industry, Education at Google

Digital Storytelling for Higher Education

Storytelling plays a significant role in helping higher education institutions reveal and build their brand. As we recruit students or faculty, nurture relationships with alumni and donors, and raise awareness and esteem in the community and among our peers, we tell our stories in order to educate, inspire, engage, and move people to action. Using the recently launched interlochen.org as our chief example, presenters Voltaire Santos Miran and Katharine Laidlaw will discuss:

  • Principles of digital storytelling
  • The elements of a compelling and authentic story
  • Audience-specific storytelling guidance
  • Design and accessibility considerations
  • Measurement considerations

Katharine Laidlaw

Interlochen Center for the Arts

Voltaire Miran


Strive to Thrive: A Targeted Retention Marketing Strategy

With colleges and universities working harder than ever to recruit students, retention has become an increasingly important part of your marketing strategy. Even a small number of transferring first-year students impacts revenue, rankings and reputation. But the good news? University marketers have access to data to lead highly targeted campaigns to reach current students and help them stay at your institution. In this session, Creighton University shares how to implement a retention marketing campaign that lays the groundwork for a broader retention marketing strategy.

Frannie Schneider

Creighton University

Get Organized! Take Control of Your Communication Plan

This session will explore how in-house teams can use organizational tools and best practices to execute their strategy successfully. Learn how to set up a project management system that will work for your team– even with limited resources, budget, and people. We’ll discuss how using tools to manage your projects can boost productivity, leaving you space to excel creatively. You’ll walk away with:

  • Understanding how you’re going to execute your strategy is almost as important as the strategy itself
  • How to organize projects successfully with a small team (smaller doesn’t necessarily mean more manageable!)
  • Why a good process matters

Taylor Marx

University of Texas at Dallas

Roxanne Sides

Roxanne Sides

University of Texas at Dallas

12:15 pm - 1:30 pm

Buffet Lunch and Networking

1:30 pm - 2:30 pm

#LearnOnTikTok: Higher Ed Strategies

There is no question that TikTok has permeated global culture, impacting everything from slang to the top music charts. With more than 1 billion active users, it’s one of the top social media apps used by Gen Z and one of the fastest-growing brands for Millennials and Gen X. However, social media managers are struggling to catch up, as they must now add videographer and editor to their already long job description. With challenges unique to the platform, expert panelists will dive into which tools and strategies should be prioritized for both quick wins and long-tail results. From everyday organic posts to paid advertising to comprehensive campaigns, we’ll discuss learnings and best practices from a higher-ed perspective.

Victoria Mendoza

University of Southern California

Brent Reser

Washington State University

Katie Camacho Smith

Katie Camacho Smith


Andrew Thompson

University of Utah

Digital Innovation and Equity in Higher Ed Branding

Is your digital presence accessible and lead nurturing? Understand where your online experience is lacking in usability and achieve quality user experience at every touchpoint of the digital process. We will hear from 3 speakers on the following topics:

Driving Better Digital Equity on Your Higher Ed Website (Presented by Monsido powered by CivicPlus)

Digital Equity is not just a new buzzword for web accessibility. Like many digital initiatives, it requires looking at a much bigger picture, including fostering a culture of awareness and action when it comes to making the website experience fair to everyone regardless of ability, location, device, and more. Join Brady Warren from Monsido, a leader in digital governance solutions, to learn more about what digital equity is, why it matters to students, parents, faculty, and administrators alike, where potential legislation currently stands on digital equity, and gain inspiration with practical tips on how to improve the equity of your website visitor experience.

How Smart Is Your AI, The Battle For Attention (Presented by Conext)

All technology today utilizes AI, but is yours smart enough to capture the attention of students and beat out your competitors? In this session, we will discuss what’s available and how you can increase your enrollments and productivity while keeping your employees happy by eliminating the things they hate doing.   

What Elephants Can Teach Us About Higher Education Branding. (Presented by Zillion)

Why are ownable brand ideas so elusive in higher education? I had a talk with the head of marketing at a Global Top 50 University in which I was told “there are no ownable ideas in higher education.” This struck me as quite a statement, that an institution that has made some of the world’s most amazing discoveries believes it has nothing ownable to say. It was also quite a surprise to me that I had, according to this head of marketing, not be doing what I actually had been doing for years.

Brady Warren

Senior Account Executive, Monsido

Mike O'Brien

CEO and Chief Developer, Conext

Brian MacDonald

Co-founder, CCO, Zillion

Managing The Intersection of Social Justice, Politics, DEI, and Your University's Brand

In the breakout session, Shelley will walk you through what’s needed to develop your DEI Branding framework that will guide your team when contemplating how to communicate responses to social justice issues as it affects your stakeholders. This framework will serve as a GPS when determining internal and external communication and identifying what action supports it. Ultimately, it integrates your institution’s DEI strategy into your overall brand strategy. The framework helps to analyze:

  • Brand values and stakeholder sentiment
  • An analysis of stakeholder impact
  • Partner identification and alignment

Shelley Willingham

The Diversity Movement

Catching Fire: How to Ignite Marketing with Experience

The #1 marketing opportunity in higher education today is a 360 degree brand experience. Every part of your institution that touches students along their journey matters to marketing and reputation. Every. Single. Interaction. There is no ad or message that could possibly substitute for a happy student-turned-fan who tells everyone they know about their experience. The potential payoffs for leveling up experience? Crushing your institution’s enrollment goals. Higher donations, demand, retention and reputation. This session will cover how marketers can lead cultural change, create a pilot program and build buy-in for institutional adoption.

ned jones

Ned Jones

Siena College

jason rich

Jason Rich

Siena College

katie szalda

Katie Szalda

Siena College

Allison Turcio

Siena College

2:30 pm - 3:00 pm

Break: Exhibit Hall

3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Bittersweet: The Reese’s University Story and What It Means for Higher Ed Marketing

The Hershey company built an imaginary university around its beloved Reese’s peanut butter cups. Reese’s University included a robust website, TV ads, brand anthem videos, social media presence, inspired mascot (the Fighting Cuppies) and more. Hear the firsthand story of how RU came to be, and why it was so easy to mimic collegiate marketing in a way that made us both laugh and cringe. We’ll have a robust discussion of why differentiation and distinctive marketing is a challenge in general, especially in higher ed. We’ll also talk about what we all can do to break through the ceiling of sameness.

R. Ethan Braden

Purdue University and Purdue Global

Bill Faust


Ryan Riess

The Hershey Company

Kristen Riggs

The Hershey Company

What Happens When a CMO Takes on Enrollment?

When La Salle University moved enrollment management under their CMO, it was the fourth VP to oversee the function in five years. At many institutions, the CMO has just made its way to a cabinet level position, often moving “out and up” after reporting to enrollment management. Now, some institutions are flipping the table with enrollment reporting to the CMO. Find out the good, the bad and the lessons learned along the way for this emerging organizational structure.

Kimberly Taylor-Benns

La Salle University

Angela Polec

La Salle University

Hope is Top Priority

In February 2020, the University of Maryland introduced a new leader in a time of remarkable disruption and uncertainty. This session will speak to the evolving role of the university marketing and communications team to; elevate the role of the president as the chief brand ambassador for a university, introduce best practices for purpose driven communications and media relations in the face of evolving societal issues, and share strategies for engaging internal and external audiences in a hybrid campus environment.

Katie Lawson

University of Maryland

Cynthia Martinez

University of Maryland

Drive Conversion in Meaningful Ways

By focusing on user experience and personalized marketing, you’ll find meaningful ways to approach content that will encourage engagement, build your marketing funnel on the right platforms and improve lead generation.

Bringing Teams Together: Working Collaboratively to Optimize Your Marketing Efforts and Crush Your Enrollment Goals (Presented by Net Natives)

We all dream of that perfect work environment. A collaborative experience where recruitment campaigns are optimized and tracked centrally, and marketing and admissions teams work together seamlessly to achieve their enrollment targets. Join the Net Natives team as we explore a variety of strategies to improve conversion rates, harness the full power of your CRM data, and increase buy-in and collaboration among your marketing and enrollment teams. We’ll also cover the challenges institutions face when it comes to high bounce rates and form abandonment, and will examine how these issues can impact conversion at the top of your funnel and the overall user experience. By the end of this session, you’ll be better equipped to improve lead generation and remove the blind spots in your pipeline, allowing you to maximize your marketing budget and transform your enrollment strategy.

Three Benefits of Using Personas in Your Digital Marketing

As students’ motivations have evolved over the course of the pandemic, colleges and universities have been challenged to change with them. Now, it is even more critical to identify opportunities within your enrollment funnel to meaningfully engage students—on their most used platforms—in a way that speaks directly to their motivations and preferences. In this session, we’ll share three key benefits to using personas—backed by our Prospective Student Mindsets™️ research—to help your team deliver the right message on the right channel at the right time.

Content is Broken. We Need a New Way. (Presented by element451)

We know the right ways to do digital marketing. Make it personal. Make it frictionless. Make it “authentic” and “engaging.” Why then do we struggle to give students experiences that are even slightly comparable to what consumer brands deliver? A hypothesis: We’re approaching content all wrong.

Our writers and designers meet weekly, at best. And worse, our writers, designers, and marketers don’t talk to our data team. And where are admissions in this equation? To do digital marketing right, we need a new way. Join us to learn how technology and teamwork will transform your content. We’ll explore:

  • Personalization-first content development
  • Behavioral-based campaigns
  • The language of tokens
  • Modular content building
  • Dynamic content
  • Bonus: AI copywriting

Meaghan Cahill-Dunn

Regional Director, Digital, Encoura

Ardis Kadiu

Founder & CEO, Element451

Jennifer Lonchar

Vice President, Strategy and Partnerships Net Natives

4:15 pm - 5:15 pm

Keynote: Raise Your Game: How to Level Up Your Habits, Mindset and Focus

The number one investment you can make is the investment in yourself. To achieve a greater level of success, you must be intentional in developing yourself mentally, physically and emotionally. If you want more, you must become more.

The key to raising your performance and making a meaningful contribution to your institution lies in your ability to work towards mastery of the fundamentals during the Unseen Hours. This will help infuse you with energy and optimism and combat stress and burnout.

This can only be achieved by closing Performance Gaps (the gap between what you know and what you do). In this powerful program, Alan will share practical strategies to help you create better habits, develop a winner’s mindset and refocus your lens on what matters most.

Regardless of title or tenure, you will leave with actionable steps to:

  • Align your habits with your core values and beliefs
  • Heighten your Emotional Intelligence (EQ)
  • Learn to be present in the moment
  • Earn confidence while maintaining humility
  • Manage change and create a process for progress

Alan Stein, Jr.

Keynote Speaker, Author and Performance Coach

5:15 pm - 6:30 pm

Closing Networking Reception

Thank You to Our Sponsors

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