NACA® Live - Pre-Convention Workshops & Events

About Pre-Convention Workshops

The National Association for Campus Activities is proud to offer two on-site pre-convention options designed for professional staff and graduate students. These sessions are rooted in NACA's Competencies for Campus Activities Professionals.

Peer-to-peer networking and engagement opportunities also will be available to undergraduate students during this time. These round-table sessions will not require advanced registration.

Note: Take a look at the opportunities available for exploring the beautiful city of Denver. 

A Science-Based Approach to Designing Live Events that Wow

  Saturday, Feb. 22, Noon-2:30p.m.
   Colorado Convention Center, Room 501
   $50 for members/$75 for non-members
Audience: Professional Staff and Graduate Students

Company: Maritz Global Events

Creating and developing live experiences that wow takes more than the application of others' best practices. Great design with a principles-based approach and a sound design process. How do you ensure audiences have an amazing experience that is aligned with the event's purpose and objectives? By applying experience design principles that are based on academia, neuroscience and a total program experience design process.


  • Session will be an interactive, hands-on workshop designed for participants to gain a clear understanding of how to design for the Maritz eight phases of the event lifecycle. 

  • The session will be scheduled for 2.5 hours. The first 30 minutes to be used to introduce the science and methodology behind Maritz's leading-edge work in experience design. From there we will introduce the eight phases and discuss each phase, using NACA® Live as the subject and exploring opportunities to purposefully design the overall experience. 

  • At the end of the session the representatives of NACA's Live Events Action Group will gather the output from each team to review and adopt where applicable. 

Learning Outcomes:

  • Explain the phases of an audience's live event journey and design a meaningful live event experience. 

  • Apply the elements of journey-mapping and guest-centered design.

Being a Multicultural-Competent Student Activities Professional

  Saturday, Feb. 22, Noon-3p.m.
   Colorado Convention Center, Room 502
   Free (Limited to the first 50 registrants - this will "sell out")
Audience: Professional Staff and Graduate Students 

Presenters: Dr. Shohreh R Afahi, Ph.D., MBA - certified executive coach with Zoe Training, and Akyanna Smith, student programs coordinator at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg

This pre-conference experience will discuss topics related to multiculturalism, inclusion and diversity. Professional staff members will be able to build on foundational knowledge in identity development and examine how professional staff members can support changing student profiles and needs across campuses. This is an opportunity to learn about creating inclusive spaces on campus for students and staff members.

Learning Outcomes:

World of Ideas

  Saturday, Feb. 22, 1-3p.m.
   Colorado Convention Center, Room 605
Audience: Undergraduate Students

Are you tired of your programming boards doing the same old thing every year? Then, World of Ideas is the place for you. It provides an opportunity for your delegation to exchange resources and ideas to help in the leadership and operational development of your programming board. Share ideas and bring back fresh, new and innovative concepts to your campus. 

World of Ideas consists of five simultaneous roundtable-style discussion topics that will be shared before you arrive. Get a jump start on meeting other student delegates and begin your networking experience! Bring your questions and be ready to learn from peers through sharing best practices and inspiring innovative ideas. A handout will be sent to delegates in advance to complete & bring with them. 


Tables 1-3: Program Board Structure Roundtable Discussion

Tables 4-6: President/Vice President Roundtable Discussion 

Tables 7-9: Marketing Roundtables Tables 10-12: Hosting Large-Scale Comedy Shows or Concerts on Your Campus 

Tables 13-15: Late Night/Special Events 

Learning Outcomes:

  • As a result of this pre-conference, students will be able to share best practices from their campuses and incorporate new ideas into their programming boards.
  • Competencies: Event Management, Leadership Development, Collaboration, & Effective Communication.

Share This Page