I ho-ho-hope your last days before Winter Break are going well. We are just under 3 months away from the WACA Conference, which means it’s time to get paperwork, registration and hotel rooms in order!
WACA Conference: March 13 – 15, 2019 @ Three Rivers Convention Center in the Tri-Cities. The theme is: Come One, Come All, to the Greatest Show on Earth! Click here to register.
The Purpose of WACA: Our focus at WACA is threefold:
1. Personal growth 2. Project management 3. Culture building
As activities directors, leadership advisors, leadership teachers, administrators, counselors, class and club advisors, coaches, counselors, success support staff, and all-around "big elephants," we all have strong roles and identities that lead us to work within those three categories.
Therefore, we believe this conference should be helpful and reaffirming of your own purpose, goals and actions. There is a place for everyone at WACA, and we would love to see you there!
Presenting at WACA: This is the "greatest show on Earth," but we can't open the three-ring circus without some performers! Learning from each other is the best part of WACA (besides just being together, of course), so please share your knowledge with us. If you’re stuck on what to present on, consider those three areas of focus for brainstorming: (1) personal growth, (2) project management, and (3) building culture.
You can sign up for a 50-minute session, or a "Meet the Pros" where you present a 10-minute session four times in succession.
- If you need ideas, go here to see past year’s presentations.
- To apply to present, please click here!
The Benefits of WACA:
I know to a certain extent, I'm preaching to the choir here. But for those who may not have attended the conference in the past, I know that it can sound intimidating to take three days off of school right in the middle of the semester! But, it really is worth it.
- You get to be with the people who "get it"; those who want to serve kids, schools and adults, and want to be in a supportive, positive environment.
- You get to learn and hear new perspectives from people from all over the state and beyond. You will come back with a toolbox full of ideas - some that you'll be ready to implement as soon as you return!
- You get a break from the routine in the middle of March when we need it most.
- You have a built-in support network of people who are in similar positions as you, so they naturally understand.
- The ability to network with advisors, administrators and more from across the whole state
- Some good ol’ fun. We all need more fun! We do our best to create it for our students, yet we don’t take the time for ourselves. Let's take the time.
- Self-care. Take care of yourself and development so that you can effectively take care of others.
- This is the only activities-based professional development conference in Washington state. So take advantage and use it for your evaluation :)
How to pay for WACA:
If you’re worried about how to pay for WACA, here are a few ways that may work for you (if you’re not worried, awesome! Just skip past this section):
- ASB funds: It is totally acceptable to use ASB funds for your registration and lodging. When you seek student approval, it can lead to a great conversation about lifelong learning and being current on best practices to best help serve your school
- Principal’s funds: When I attended WACA the first time, I talked to my principal about the value of the conference and he agreed to cover the costs for me. If your administrator needs to see the value, you can show them the principal's framework and they can see how your professional development to help with school culture is a part of their framework.
- Professional development funds: Based on your district’s contract, you may have funds to use. Remember, this is the only conference for activities/student leadership in the state!
- ASB secretary: Talk to your ASB Secretary about other funds that may be available. Some districts have specific advisor pools of money for professional development.
- Department funds: If you’re lucky enough to have a department fund for activities or leadership, use that.
- Your local school foundation, union, booster club, and/or parent organization: Ask for a scholarship. It directly supports kids and their development, so this is a perfect use.
Phew! Thank you so for your time during what is a busy week for us all. If you have any questions about anything or need help, please don’t hesitate to reach out. And over the next few weeks, whatever you celebrate, I hope it's amazing!
Season's greetings - happy holidays - and we'll see you in the Tri-Cities in 2019!