Drake Learning Symposium

The annual Drake University Learning Symposium provides a time of learning and comradery for Drake faculty, staff, and administrators.

“It’s great to have the mix of people learning and networking together,” so said one of the participants at the 5th annual DU Learning Symposium. Over 90% of the faculty, staff and administrators attending agreed that the event promoted a culture that values building community at Drake. “Just having the opportunity to meet, talk, and connect with folks whose own paths don’t often cross mine is the best thing about the Symposium.”

The event was held Friday, Aug. 18, at the Sheraton in West Des Moines.

This year’s theme, Building Community, was addressed by over 30 presenters in a wide variety of modes and methods. The keynote address was delivered by Scott Raecker, Executive Director of The Robert D. and Billie Ray Center. One participant commented, “Great session! This was an interactive session done right! The activities we worked on were meaningful and well-timed. I actually appreciated that my table was full of others from my College so that we were able to have meaningful discussions that were directly applicable to our daily work.”

Other comments about the day:

  • I love the symposium, honestly one of my favorite events of the years because it brings so many people, new and familiar, together in one place to exchange ideas.
  • The keynote address was particularly valuable in reminding us all of the value of interpersonal relationships and healthy ways of addressing conflict.
  • I think this year was excellent. Initially I was thinking there weren’t as many choices as usual, but this actually led to really full and interested sessions. I had a great day!
  • I have always appreciated how this symposium has provided ample opportunities for us to connect with others across campus that we don’t otherwise often see and is not just packed with educational sessions. The sessions are important and there are lots of choices.
  • It was great to learn more about the community building and community engagement happening at Drake and in the larger community. It was great to bring together faculty and staff. I made several connections with faculty members that will benefit all of our work.

Feedback also included ideas to improve the symposium and increase participation. All feedback was reviewed and discussed by the Provost’s Council and the planning committee. Some interesting changes are in the works for next year.

Be watching this space for the Call for Proposals in the spring of 2018.

Contact Drinda Williams, Administrative Assistant, Office of the Provost, if you have questions.

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University News
January 9, 2018
The Drake University 2018 Engaged Citizen Conference, “Nourishing (Feeding) the World,” is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 22, and Friday,  Feb. 23 in Drake’s Olmsted Center. Admission is free.