Conferences

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Fall Conference Responsibilities

Staff Development

Becky Koch, Kim Ruliffson - Administrative Liaisons

  • Remind Extension director’s office to request committee member nominations from associations and RECs at least six months in advance
  • Provide professional development ideas generated by program planning teams, Extension Leadership Team and conference evaluations
  • Make sure committee is meeting goals and progressing on schedule
  • Organize new staff dinner (Lynette Flage)

Conference Coordinator

Elizabeth Cronin

  • Solicit hotel bids based on Extension Leadership Team input and review proposals from hotels
  • Add incoming committee to listserv and remove outgoing committee
  • Update www.ag.ndsu.edu/conferences
  • Add conference dates to the Ag and Extension calendar and the NDSU event calendar
  • Work with committee chair to schedule committee meetings
  • Review the hotel contract with the committee (meeting rooms, start and end times, food and beverage minimums, etc.)
  • Take notes during committee meetings and post to SharePoint site
  • Set up a collaborative details table that committee members can edit and review
  • Develop online registration
  • Develop estimated conference budget and keep track of ongoing income and expenses
  • Process bills for payment
  • Initiate contracts and payments for speakers
  • After registration is closed, email list of registrants to presenters, confirming presentation time, title, date, and length of session
  • Finalize meeting room assignments based on registration
  • Oversee the assignment of room hosts
  • Prepare meal counts and share with hotel
  • Review the event orders with the hotel to confirm all details (setup, food, head counts, etc.)
  • Review committee responsibilities regularly to confirm all details have been covered
  • Organize and bring supplies to conference
  • Print registration receipts for each registrant to hand out at registration
  • Print registration list to check-off names
  • Coordinate registration with committee the first day of conference
  • Be available for additional support during conference
  • At awards, see that committee is accommodating award speakers and recipients, greet and seat them up front with an award booklet.
  • Send each breakout session presenter the evaluation comments

Committee Chair

  • Schedule and facilitate planning meetings as needed. Work with conference coordinator to establish procedures for web or phone conferences.
  • Make sure committee members are following up on their responsibilities
  • Send a formal invitation to ag administrators and ask when they are available to speak
  • Ask director’s office to make official invitation to NDSU president when conference is in Fargo
  • Announce conference to targeted audiences and follow-up as needed
  • Ask all presenters to put their PowerPoints and other resources on Sched
  • Chair the opening conference session
  • Send a follow-up email to conference participants with information about online presentations and evaluation
  • Schedule a follow-up meeting to review the conference
  • Ensure all conference communication reaches the correct audience: allagents, nea, area, spec, all-rec. Do not use the all-ag listserv for conference-specific emails.

Committee Members

Before conference:

  • Participate fully in committee brainstorming, planning, etc.
  • Contact and confirm speakers as assigned and ask about setup needs

Immediately before the conference:

  • Put together and label county boxes
  • Set up registration (need 2-3 committee members to work at registration table)
  • Put certificates into frames and then order according to the awards program

During conference:

  • Serve as room hosts
  • Emcee general sessions
  • Assist with set up and tear down (each morning and evening)
  • Be available to help with immediate needs that come up

Immediately after conference:

  • Make sure everything is picked up and loaded and that all equipment has been returned to its place of origin
  • Write thank-you notes

Room Host

  • Make sure equipment is connected and working properly
  • Make sure the presenter starts and ends on time
  • Remind attendees to complete evaluations on the session in Sched

Program Proposals Chair

  • With committee, determine need for breakout session proposals (by program area, general session only, etc.)
  • Review and revise past proposal form(s)
  • Distribute proposal form with deadline and send to the following listservs: allagents, nea, area, spec, all-rec. Do not send to all-ag unless approved by committee chair.
  • Accept proposals and share final selections with committee
  • Review program draft with Extension program leaders and committee
  • Notify staff if their proposal was accepted or declined

AV Chair

  • Make a list of equipment needed and work with conference coordinator to reserve from Ag Comm (laptops and projectors for each room, plus two backup projectors)
  • Keep track of all equipment, label if necessary
  • Make sure equipment gets delivered back to appropriate department/office
  • Develop a schedule for what equipment goes in which room and when
  • Assign committee members to set up and take down equipment

Food Chair

  • Select meals and snacks (Feedback from previous conferences suggests having beef for one meal and chocolate for one break. Fruit trays are also popular.)
  • Determine costs to base the registration fee
  • Review menu with conference coordinator and hotel contact. Coordinator will serve as main contact with hotel, but food chair should be familiar with plans and staff so they can assist as needed.
  • During conference, follow-up with catering if food runs low or the order is incorrect
  • About 30 minutes before each meal, check room to be sure arrangements are in order and food is on time

Social Chair

  • Participate in social planning meetings
  • Coordinate with NDAAEA representative to ensure funding from sponsors
  • Share social evening schedule of events with committee
  • Coordinate with professional association on auction
  • Invite retirees to ESP luncheon and social: ndsu-extensionretirees@listserv.nodak.edu
  • Arrange for any other social activities (bowling, trivia, etc.) planned by committee

Awards Chair

  • Determine decorations appropriate for event (Bison theme is often used and decorations are available free from Alumni Association)
  • Select emcee
  • Collect names to be recognized: Epsilon Sigma Phi Meritorious Service Awards, Agriculture and Extension staff awards, and Years of Service (Extension list from Kris Holt; REC list from Randy Mehlhoff)
  • Email Years of Service honorees to let them know they will be receiving an award
  • Create PowerPoint of honorees/nominees if desired
  • Organize awards in presentation order and hand to on-stage presenters
  • Arrange for delivering awards to those not in attendance

Evaluation Chair

  • Review past evaluation survey and revise as needed
  • Share evaluation results with committee first and then with presenters and administrators if requested

Ag Communication Staff

  • Create/design logo if requested by committee
  • Arrange Bruce/Scott for audio/video support
  • Design and print program (if used), award booklets and award certificates
  • Take photos of award winners and distribute news releases
  • Create new employee PowerPoint if desired

REC Representatives

  • Encourage REC staff to submit ideas for breakout sessions
  • Include time for Foundation Seedstock Program staff to meet
  • Include time for Seedstocks training with input from Extension contacts (names will be provided)
  • Session on new REEport system replacing CRIS system


Updated January 2018

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