The 2017 Community College Futures Assembly will be held from January 29-31, 2016 at the Hilton Hotel, Lake Buena Vista near Walt Disney World, Orlando, FL.
What is the 2017 Community College Futures Assembly’s theme?
The 2017 Community College Futures Assembly focuses on solutions to the critical issues that were raised in the 2014 Community College Futures Assembly. “Changing the Debate: From Pathways to Pipeline”is the theme for 2017 Community College Futures Assembly, emphasizing the diverse solutions community colleges utilize when facing critical issues.
What are the Bellwether Awards?
The Bellwether Awards are an integral part of the Community College Futures Assembly, established in 1995.The Assembly is sponsored by the Institute of Higher Education at the University of Florida and focuses on cutting-edge, trendsetting programs that other colleges might find worthy of replicating.The Bellwether Awards are given annually in three categories to colleges with outstanding and innovative programs or practices.
The Bellwether Award has been compared to football’s Heisman Award because it is competitively judged and is an award given by your peers in community colleges, with no cash award. It has also been called “the award of awards” because many institutions with programs that have won other awards apply for the Bellwether Award. Moreover, previous recipients of the Bellwether Award have said that it has been a springboard for other types of recognition and/or funding.
Why do I have to apply if I was already nominated?
Selection of the finalists is a competitive process. It is essential that those nominated provide key information addressing specific criteria, in order to be competitively judged in the selection of finalists.
Can you tell me who nominated me?
It is our practice not to reveal the specific source of nominations.In general, Bellwether nominations come from numerous sources, including co-sponsoring organizations, state officials, previously competitively reviewed presentations at other national conventions, and programs featured in the media.
What should I include in the application?
You need the following information to complete online application:
- Name of the program, name and contact information for the principal contact
- Names of three presenters and their contact information
- 50-word program description
- 500-word (or less) program summary
- The content in the application should address the following elements (selection weights are shown in parentheses):
a) The application criteria (80%)
- Identify the issue or challenge that this leading edge program or activity was designed to address. (20%)
- Describe the process, timeline, participants, and resources required to implement the program or activity.(20%)
- Specify the results and/or impact.(20%)
- Elaborate on lessons learned for colleges considering a replication of this initiative.(20%)
b) The conference theme: “Changing the Debate: From Pathways to Pipelines”(10%)
- “Changing the Debate: From Pathways to Pipelines” is the theme for 2017 Community College Futures Assembly, emphasizing the diverse solutions community colleges utilize when facing critical issues.
c) An identified critical issue (10%)
- The 2017 Community College Futures Assembly seeks nominations/applications for leading edge trend-setting Bellwether Programs that address one or more critical issues facing higher education. Please articulate the critical issue that your program addresses.
Should I submit additional materials with my application?
No. Additional materials are requested only from finalists after they have been notified of their finalist status. Please stick to the application guidelines. This year, we encourage applicants to submit a video clip that is no longer than 1 minute, addressing the selection criteria. However, this requirement is OPTIONAL. The video clip must be uploaded to YouTube (can be public or unlisted) and link included in the application form in the appropriate field.
Can I submit my application electronically?
Can a program be submitted in more than one category?
No. Only one category can be chosen per program, so choose the category your program fits best. However, multiple programs can be applied for different categories.
What is the judging process like?
Choosing finalists: There is a national panel of judges in each category; all being experts in each category’s area. The judges rate the programs based on the applications and program descriptions and then choose ten finalists for their category.
Choosing winners: The Bellwether Selection Committee chooses winners based on additional program materials in conjunction with the presentation made at the Assembly.
What are the three award categories?
- Instructional Programs & Services: Programs or activities that have been designed and successfully implemented to foster or support teaching and learning in the community college.
- Planning, Governance & Finance: Programs or activities that have been designed and successfully implemented to improve efficiency and effectiveness in the community college.
- Workforce Development: Public and/or private strategic alliances and partnerships that promote community and economic development.
Note: Please note that if your application is not selected as a finalist under the original category you applied for, the same application can also be considered for another category internally in a case when the judges see strengths of your program matching with another category.
When will I be notified of my finalist status?
Applicants will be notified of your finalist status in late November.
Do I have to be a finalist to attend the Assembly?
No. We would like to have you joining the Assembly and getting involved with this elite group of community colleges. You will be inspired by our keynote speaker, outstanding program presentations, and the networking opportunities to support your institutional success.
Do I have to attend the Assembly for our program to win the Bellwether Awards?
Yes. The judging process for winners is based partially on the quality of the finalist’s presentation at the Assembly. Registration and attendance by someone involved with your program is required. It is also strongly recommended that you attend the Bellwether Finalists Reception on Monday evening and the Bellwether Winners Luncheon on Tuesday while at the Assembly. Recognition is given and press pictures are taken at that time.
How much are registration fees for the 2017 Community College Futures Assembly?
Registration information can be found here. Registration includes conference materials, all sessions and breaks, welcome reception, continental breakfasts, Bellwether Finalists Recognition Reception and Bellwether Awards Luncheon. In addition every attendee will receive one copy ofbook(s) written by the Keynote Speaker(s).
If you have more than two registrants, one way to save on registration fees is to join the Bellwether College Consortium (BCC). To learn more about BCC membership benefits, click here.
Can I bring a guest to the Assembly?
Yes, but guests must be included during registration using Guest Registration. A guest registration only includes: Welcome reception, Bellwether Finalists Recognition reception and Bellwether Awards Luncheon.
Do I have to be registered for the Assembly in order to book a hotel room at the Hilton Walt Disney World, Orlando, FL?
No, but we strongly recommend booking your hotel room as early as possible. Special room rates are available for a limited time. The cut off date to reserve a room is December 22nd, 2016. Click here to book NOW! For reservations by phone, please ask for the “CCF” block to ensure access to the group rate.
Who should I contact if I have more questions with the online registration form?
What should I know about the presentation if I am a presenter?
Presentation Date and Time
All finalist presentations will be given on Monday, Jan. 30th, 2017. Time slots for presentations will be assigned randomly, and the presenters will be notified closer to the event in January.
Presenters will be given one hour, and it is recommended that the last few minutes be used for questions. Presentations should address the same criteria addressed in your application. Rooms will be set up in classroom style, with an average of 25 attendees per room. Handouts, etc. are allowed and encouraged during your presentation. Judges will be present, but will be anonymous.
We will be providing an LCD projection unit, in each conference room. We strongly suggest that you bring your own laptop. We will have a few on hand if one is needed or if there is a problem connecting your laptop to the LCD. To ensure a smooth presentation process, please also bring your presentation media on a USB drive. We do NOT provideINTERNET ACCESSin the conference rooms, so if you’re planning on presenting a website, please use screen captures and make sure to embed video clips in advance. If you have further questions we can help you to get in touch with the Hilton’s A/V team. We have no objection to using internet as long as you can make your own arrangements.
Submission of supplemental materials is STRONGLY RECOMMENDED. The Bellwether Selection Committee bases its decisions on the quality of your presentation as well as your supplemental materials packet. Supplemental materials speak to the same criteria used for your application.Please provide these materials in a 1″ – 1 ½ ” binder (Can be larger if needed).
Past packets have included such items as project reports, testimonials, press releases, pamphlets, and short movie clips (if desired). As part of the supplemental materials, please include in your packet your one-page summary. In addition, make sure all material has been saved in electronic form either with USB or CD provided.
The Committee will review the materials throughout the conference. We ask that you BRING THREE COPIES of your packet with you to the Assembly and have them available for the judges by Sunday morning (January 29, 2017). You may drop them off at the Futures Assembly registration table. If you will not be arriving by that time, you can arrange to have them shipped to our office beforehand (Attn: Futures Assembly, 1215 Norman Hall, Gainesville FL 32611) and we will bring them down. We keep one packet for our records, but the others will be available for you to take home at the end of the Assembly.
More information regarding presentation will be sent out to presenters when the Assembly gets closer.
Where can I get additional information about the 2017 Community College Futures Assembly if I still have questions?
Do you have a question? Or perhaps you need to get ahold of us for another reason. Then please use the form on this page to contact us and we will get in touch with you shortly.