Posted October 11, 2012 by Jennifer Powell 

Discover New Ideas During Keynote Addresses

In selecting our keynote speakers for the 2013 ACUI annual conference in St. Louis, the Conference Program Team wanted to stay true to the conference theme and offer delegates an opportunity to discover new perspectives. We made lists, we watched videos, we voted, we submitted offers, and we waited. It was not easy! We are thrilled with our keynote selection and the educational opportunities they will provide to our delegates. We have a diverse lineup of educators, storytellers, and motivators that will cover many of the Association’s core competencies during the conference.2013Keynotes

We are excited to kick off the conference on Sunday with Amy Yurko, a Washington University alum. An architect and founder of BrainSpaces, Yurko will draw connections between learning environments and physical space. An educator, writer, speaker, and community volunteer, Yurko’s passion for design with intentional learning opportunities aligns with our daily work with students and our facilities. She has participated in the planning and design of more than $1 billion of public, private, domestic, and international school projects, ensuring that best practices in educational facility planning and design are considered throughout the project’s development. We look forward to taking away similar strategies for space at our institutions.

Our next keynote, Jose Antonio Vargas, will focus his conversation around social justice and immigration. A multimedia storyteller and award-winning journalist, you may recognize Vargas from the June 2012 cover on TIME magazine, where he wrote about the DREAM Act and his status as an “undocumented immigrant.” His personal story will provide a perspective on an important, ongoing conversation regarding immigration in the United States.

We will conclude the conference with Kevin Carroll, founder of Kevin Carroll Katalyst/LLC. An author and motivational speaker, Carroll will draw connections between work and play. A high-energy speaker, Carroll is a motivator for many, including CEOs and schoolchildren, encouraging us to embrace our spirit of play and creativity. During this keynote, ACUI members will develop strategies for infusing play into their work and will hopefully be able to bring this perspective back to their individual offices and institutions.

The 2013 Conference Program Team is excited to bring these dynamic educational experiences to all conference delegates. We will also be discovering new venues in St. Louis. Each keynote will be in the Ferrara Theater in the America’s Center Convention Complex. For more information on all of our educational programs, please visit

We hope these three keynote speakers will help you discover a new perspective and enhance your educational experience in St. Louis!

Which keynote speaker do you most look forward to hearing speak?

Jennifer Powell

Jennifer Powell is the Coordinator of Student Event Services at University of Tampa.

Jennifer's current responsibilities include managing the Student Center’s student staff and advising Student Productions, the union’s programming board. Jenn has been actively involved in ACUI since 2006, serving as a undergraduate member of the Region 11 Leadership Team and as a graduate intern for two years while completing her master’s degree in higher education from the University of South Carolina. She is currently a member of the 2013 Conference Program Team, overseeing a number of programs, including social media and technology.


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