36th USDLA National Distance Learning Conference
Dates: July 17th – 20th, 2023
The Wyndham is in the famous ICON park and central to all the Orlando attractions. This is a great opportunity to catch some of the best distance/digital learning presenters in the industry and tie in a weekend of fun either prior or after the conference. To make this even sweeter – the Wyndham has agreed to honor the USDLA room rate for 3 days prior and after the conference – a no-brainer for extending your trip to beautiful Orlando!
What are past attendees, partners and members saying about the conference? Listen below:
“It’s Distance Learning’s Time to Shine”
The Conference and Events committee has listened to your feedback and is hard at work planning the details for the event. Enhancements will include:
- We are moving the event back to our traditional hotel setting to provide more flexibility for you during the day to take a rest, freshen up, network with your colleagues and enjoy the venue
- In fact, it’s more than a hotel – the Wyndham Orlando is a resort!
- All menus will take into account dietary needs and there will be plenty of refreshments during the day to keep you energized plus plenty of water, coffee and tea!
- ICON park has some of the best on-site restaurants in the area with something for everyone so no need to have a car, everything is in walking distance
- Better presenter preparation for those requiring virtual assistants as well as more audience interaction
- ALL sessions will be end-user led, with clear descriptions that share best practices within the world of distance and digital learning
- Enhanced keynote presentation area with over 9000 square feet of space designed for integrated gathering, presentations and networking
- Improved poster-session accommodations along with focused “power sessions” that eliminate fluff and get right into the important details on the topic
- Tighter integration of the of virtual sessions so that they are truly immersive rather than appearing as add-ons
The conference promises something for everyone:
- Opening Keynote Address
- Live Music Kickoff Party
- Pre-Conference Sessions
- 60+ Concurrent Sessions
- Virtual Option for ALL Sessions
- Several Mid-week Keynote Addresses
- International Awards Celebration
- Bill Jackson Memorial Walk/Run
- Night on the Town
- Public Policy Forum
- Closing Keynote Address
Our USDLA National Conference has long been an event where we mingle, discuss technology and learn from an audience broader than our own. Nothing can replace those live in-person interactions and conference feedback has always focused on those personal relationships made with one another.
For our 36th anniversary will be focusing on tracks that are in high demand as we continue to navigate both remote and in-person learning strategies. These tracks include:
- Leadership tracks
- HyFlex Strategies for Success
- Student Engagement Techniques
- Professional Development for the Online Staff/Faculty
- Policy, Regulation and Governance in Distance Education
- Distance and Digital Leadership
- Ensuring Quality, Flexibility and Access (OER, Hyflex, and more)
- Innovative Techniques and Technologies
- Best Practices in Instructional Design and Learner Engagement
- Great IDEAs: Inclusion, Diversity, Equity & Accessibility
- What’s Next for Distance Education
Our 2023 Speaker Lineup
Event Speaker – Amrit Ahluwalia – Thurs 7/20@11:45AM EST
Editor In Chief at The EvoLLLution: A Modern Campus Illumination
Topic: Bucking Enrollment Trends to Grow in a Challenging Environment
The higher education space experienced significant challenges since the pandemic, and we’re still adapting. Maintaining viability over the next decade means seeing learners through a new lens. It also means foundationally changing the way standard processes at every phase of the learner lifecycle need to evolve. From enrollment management and retention, to learner engagement and communication, to alumni engagement—a future-ready postsecondary institution needs to realign around student centricity and lifelong learning. This session will share ideas, strategies and best practices colleges and universities across North America have implemented to ready themselves for an uncertain future.
Author – Joe Sallustio
Senior Vice President, Lindenwood Global and Co-Author of Commencement
Topic: Commencement – The Beginning of a New Era in Higher Education (Presentation by Kate Colbert)
Colleges and universities that provide millions of degree and non-degree credentials each year are a vital backbone of communities and economies. These institutions elevate the critical-thinking capacities of students and learners, and they provide crucial job skills and life skills to emerging workforces. But the skills we need, the ways in which we collaborate, and the very jobs available to graduates are changing. It’s time for higher education to start anew. It’s time for Commencement into a new era. Join us for a detailed insight into Joe’s new book and how you can help to seize the moment to change higher education forever.
Event Speaker – Kate Colbert – Tues 7/18@Noon EST
President, Silver Tree Communications, LLC and and Co-Author of Commencement
Topic: Commencement – The Beginning of a New Era in Higher Education (Presentation)
Through the eyes of 100+ college and university presidents, learn how to embrace a new leadership skill set to change your college and your career. You will also discover how to establish a mission through a modern lens that creates new opportunities while innovating, creating, re-imagining, and evolving beyond the status quo. Kate will guide you to adopt a mindset about the purpose and value of higher education that makes the unimaginable suddenly possible. You’ll also get guidance on surviving the looming “admissions cliff” as well as how to use pandemic lessons to create a competitive advantage. Join us and you’ll soon be creating relationships, partnerships, and conversations that break down the walls, silos, rules, and bureaucracies that have held us back for many years.
Event Speaker – Jennifer Williams – Wed 7/19@Noon EST
Executive Director, Take Action Global and Transformational Leader in Education
Topic: Get Ready for Change – Instructional Design Practices Through Meaningful Uses of Technology
At the heart of innovation and social good are purpose, empathy, and a strong desire to make a positive difference in the lives of people.” Join Distance and Digital Learning Specialist, global educator, and author Dr. Jennifer Williams for this interactive keynote session offered for distance learning organizations ready to activate positive change through engaging instructional design practices and meaningful uses of technology. Dr. Williams will share examples from her work in distance learning with schools and organizations across the world from 149 countries and from partnerships with the United Nations, the U.S. Department of State, NYC Department of Education, LEGO, Microsoft, and others. Digital learning programs and tools will be modeled during the session for use in future-focused learning environments. Participants will leave with ready-to-go action plans to teach boldly and with questions to consider in preparing for multiple futures and new shifts in teaching and learning.
Event Speaker – Peter Noonan – Wed 7/19@3:30PM EST
Superintendent of Falls Church City Public Schools
Topic: Pandemic Performance – How a District Minimized Learning Loss Through Advanced Planning
In conversations with school districts across the country, the COVID pandemic was not something public and private K-12 schools were prepared for, especially in providing education in a virtual world. Falls Church City Public Schools avoided that trend as students thrived. Learn how this district prepared in advance to navigate this truly monumental challenge.
Entertainment – Christina Vukel – Mon 7/17@5PM EST and Wed 7/19@5PM EST
Singer, Songwriter and Musician
Christina Vukel has created a name for herself with over 870,000 Spotify streams, over 3600 Facebook followers, and a dedicated fan base in her Florida hometown.
Christina has released 25 songs, including an album “They Say”. She continues to write songs for future albums.
Join us and see a future star!
Q: Do I need to register if I’m presenting?
A: Yes, either as an on-site or virtual presenter, both of which have discounted rates.
Q: What meals are included?
A: Complimentary breakfast and lunch are provided Tuesday and Wednesday with a brunch on Thursday. Dinners are on your own each night, however we are hosting an Awards dinner on Wednesday evening at a cost of $50 per person.
Q: Can I register on-site?
A: Yes, although discounted registration prior to July 17th is encouraged.
Q: What is the best airport to fly into and how far away?
A: Orlando International airport is approximately 20 minutes away?
Q: Are their restaurants within walking distance?
A: Yes, the famous ICON Park is a short 10 minute walk
Q: Is there on-site dining at the Wyndham?
A: Yes, both dining and bar service is available on-site
Q: Can I bring my family to the conference?
A: Family is welcome to enjoy the resort facilities while you are at the conference, however all conference activities such as keynotes, sessions and meals require attendee registration
Q: I am principal of a new online school based in Florida. What would you say would be the benefits of me attending your conference?
A: Past attendees say it’s the expertise you’ll encounter with like-minded professionals from an audience broader than your own, along with very personal networking. This is nearly always the #1 comment when we poll attendees post-conference. You’ll also find free pre-conference sessions that are very popular as are the concurrent sessions that run through the week.