EAST Conference Celebrates Student Service, Success

   

EAST Conference Celebrates Student Service, Success
2/28/2018 10:27:17 AM

Thousands of students, educators and guests will converge on the Hot Springs Convention Center March 13-15 to celebrate success and share the work they’ve been doing throughout the school year as part of an annual conference hosted by the EAST Initiative.

Now in its 19th year, the EAST Conference is the most anticipated event of the year for students enrolled in EAST. It includes an exhibit hall, where nearly 240 EAST schools will set up booths to display the service learning projects they’ve undertaken during the year, as well as breakout sessions for students to attend either to get hands-on experience using advanced technology or to hear nationally acclaimed speakers who will inspire them to accomplish new and challenging things.

 

“The planning for this conference began as soon as last year’s conference ended,” said Jessica Dunham, events manager for the EAST Initiative. “It is a huge event that involves our entire staff, as well as dozens of volunteers and student leaders to pull off, but the benefit it provides to students is tremendous. Every year we see students leave conference more excited and more energized to serve their communities than when they arrived, and that’s our goal.”

 

The highlight of the EAST Conference is an awards gala, which will take place at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 14. During the gala, awards for more than a dozen student competitions will be presented, as will the Timothy R. Stephenson Founder’s Award, which represents the highest level of achievement for any EAST program.

 

“Winning the Founder’s Award means a school has demonstrated a tremendous level of sophistication in the projects it undertakes and that the projects themselves involve extensive collaboration with their community,” said Matt Dozier, president and CEO of the EAST Initiative. “Perhaps most importantly, it also means students are growing and learning as they work to solve the problems they see around them. They are succeeding today and preparing for their futures in many emerging and powerful fields.”

 

The conference exhibit hall is open to the public from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Wednesday and 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. on Thursday. There is no charge for admission, but guests are asked to check in at registration. Wednesday’s awards gala is also open to the public; tickets are required and cost $15.

 

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