Professional development conference offered to entire staff

Sessions to cover local, national and international university initiatives

This year, for the first time, a free Student Services Professional Development Conference is being offered to the entire Washington University in St. Louis staff. Topics are designed to appeal to a wide audience.

“The response to past conferences has been so positive we thought we would open it up to more staff so others could benefit from the experience,” says Mary Zabriskie, assistant director of campus life.

The theme is “Recognizing the Reach – Washington University and its Impact on the Community.” Nearly 30 administrators and faculty will address local, national and international university initiatives, as well as future plans, in breakout sessions.

The conference takes place from 1-5 p.m. Thursday, May 24, in Simon Hall.

The keynote speaker is Jim Burmeister, director of Commencement, who has been part of the university community for more than 50 years. He will share “His Story” at 1 p.m. in May Auditorium.

Following the talk, participants may select two different breakout sessions — one from 2:15-3:15 p.m. and another from 3:30-4:30 p.m. Eight options are provided. Sessions are held in various Simon Hall classrooms.

Session I offerings

  • “Supporting the Big Picture”
  • “Washington University Programs and Initiatives in Washington, D.C.”
  • “Thinking About Politics in an Election Year”
  • “Community Development Initiatives & Entrepreneurship”

Session II offerings

  • “Education-focused University Initiatives in the St. Louis Community”
  • “Extending Your Reach”
  • “Creating and Supporting an Inclusive Campus Community”
  • “Global Educational Opportunities for Undergraduate Students”

To RSVP, visit Space is limited.

The undergraduate Student Services Professional Development Advisory Group hosts this event, as well as educational programs for student services staff throughout the year.

Held annually, the conference typically is geared to undergraduate student services staff from across the campus (Residential Life, Student Health, Athletics, Student Financial Services and service staff in all academic schools, among other areas).

For more information, email Zabriskie at