NACA BLOG - ​ Facilitating NACA Institutes - 2/24/2022

Feb. 24, 2022
Leah Eickhoff
NACA Education & Research Coordinator

As NACA prepares to relaunch several in-person summer Institutes in 2022, we are seeking outstanding professionals with a passion for student learning to join the facilitation teams. The opportunity to facilitate small groups of students or professional participants through the pre-written curriculum has often been cited as a highlight of professional growth and development. It is also a great, short-term NACA volunteer opportunity for staff of member institutions. Since it has been a few years since NACA has been able to offer these in-person experiences, we wanted to share some answers to the more frequently asked questions about these opportunities.

What does a facilitator do at NACA Institutes?

Facilitators help guide a small group of students or professional staff participants through the conversations and activities that achieve the learning outcomes for the Institute. Facilitators do not have to know all the answers, but they ask questions, highlight key points, and process information in a way that helps participants gain clarity on the content. They use the curriculum as a roadmap for achieving this.

Facilitators also help set the tone for the event. NACA Institutes offer a balance of work and play. Lots of time is spent thinking and applying new and old concepts, but there is also time built in to establish new relationships and to learn through play. Facilitators participate in all aspects of the Institute and serve as role models throughout the entire experience.

Do NACA Institute facilitators receive any training?

Yes! NACA Institute facilitators will participate in a series of training calls. These calls will be used to get to know the other selected facilitators, walk through the prepared curriculum, discuss basic expectations, and answer any questions the team has. Outside of these training calls, facilitators will be asked to invest time in reviewing the curriculum on their own.

Who makes a good NACA Institute facilitator?

  • If you are a full-time or part-time professional staff member at a NACA member institution, and you have the approval from and support of your institution, you could make a good facilitator.
  • If you are someone who loves facilitating student or professional learning, you could make a good facilitator.
  • If you are someone who can be a servant leader, putting the needs of others ahead of your own while on-site, you could make a good facilitator.
  • If you are someone who can do all these things (and a bit more), you could make a great student small group facilitator!
  • If you are someone who can do all these things (and a bit more), plus you have a minimum of 5-years professional experience, you could make a great professional small group facilitator!
What are the responsibilities a NACA Institute facilitator should be aware of?
A NACA Institute facilitator is expected to:
  • Participate. This includes active participation in the pre-Institute work and on-site activities.
  • Communicate. Facilitators should expect to communicate in a timely manner before, during and after the event via email, phone, and/or in-person.
  • Collaborate. Be a teammate and offer a helping hand in addressing logistical needs or adapting to any curriculum changes while on-site.
  • Support. Facilitators should support the mission, vision, core values, and non-discrimination, diversity advancement and affirmative action principles of NACA.

What are the steps to become a facilitator?

Do you have more questions? Please contact the NACA Education and Research Coordinator, Leah Eickhoff.

Leah Eickhoff is the education and research coordinator at the National Association for Campus Activities. With over 20 years of experience in higher education, she is passionate about creating experiences where students and professionals can learn and grow.

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