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When
October 26-28, 2017
Starting at 8:00am
Where
Scottsdale, AZ
4 Star Hotel Valley Ho in Downtown's Arts District

About SPARC

Summer Programs and Auxiliary Revenue Conference


SPARC is the premier national conference serving the professional development needs of independent school summer and auxiliary program leaders. Through two and half days of collaborative workshops, keynotes, panels, and discussions, attendees will develop ideas and strategies to implement in their own communities. Our program is designed for professionals with all levels of experience, from those just beginning in their role to others with years of experience.

SPARC was inspired by the knowledge that successful summer/auxiliary programming requires a unique combination of skills by leaders who often work in relative isolation within their own schools. Our conference will address the wide range of responsibilities held by summer/auxiliary program leaders that include human resources, marketing, business management, innovation and entrepreneurship, programming, operations, and technology. Attendees will develop clear action plans to implement immediately in their own programs.

Immerse yourself in sunny Scottsdale, AZ to network with colleagues, share best practices, and learn the skills needed to increase your program’s educational and financial performance. By collaborating with independent school and business leaders from across the country, you will be fully prepared and inspired to accelerate growth in your summer and auxiliary programs.

CONFERENCE WILL START IN

Register Soon, Space Limited


Why attend?


SPARC Schedule

Click here to see a detailed description of the conference schedule and speakers.


Jeet Singh
CEO and Co-Founder, Redstar Ventures

What Does Your Customer Really Want? Understanding Value When Creating New Products & Services In Any Industry

  60 minutes
  Beginner
Jeet Singh is a serial entrepreneur, musician and philanthropist based in Boston, Massachusetts. He has co-founded businesses in e-commerce software, marketing analytics, digital media, and education, including the NASDAQ-listed software firm ATG (acquired by Oracle Corp). He is currently also the co-founder and CEO at Redstar Ventures, a new business "foundry”, and Begin Studios, a digital media content and software startup. He has extensive experience in creating and growing organizations, including product development, marketing strategy, staffing, marketing, and fundraising. In 2000, Jeet established the non-profit organization Winterline Foundation to promote the education of "global citizens". As an outgrowth of these, in 2014 he founded the for-profit Winterline Global Education company, which offers skills-oriented gap-year and trimester programs for young adults, and develops skill-based curricula.
Steve McKibben
Steve McKibben
Dean of Summer Programs, Hotchkiss School

Engaging Chinese Students: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
This interactive workshop explores opportunities associated with envisioning, strategizing, and implementing programs that identify, recruit, and then welcome Chinese students for summer study and the challenges of the promises to enhance a school’s commitment to diversity as well as to generate new revenue streams. Facilitated by two veteran summer program directors--one from a rural East Coast boarding school, the other from an urban West Coast day school--this session will examine the burgeoning Chinese student market and share best practices (and missteps) for engaging Chinese schools, agencies, families, and students.
Patrick Cook-Deegan
Patrick Cook-Deegan
Director and Founder, Project Wayfinder

Guiding Young People Towards Meaningful Lives

  60 minutes
  Beginner
Over the past decade, Patrick has helped build a number of innovative youth programs including Project Wayfinder, Back to Earth, Inward Bound Mindfulness Education, Brown University’s Social Innovation Initiative, and a travel abroad program for low-income high school students. He has taught mindfulness at public, private, alternative, and charter high schools across the world. Patrick has spoken at more than 100 high schools and universities and written on mindfulness, purpose education and high school innovation for Stanford Social Innovation Review, Edutopia, and UC Berkeley’s Greater Good. Patrick has been deeply influenced by the history and practices of native traditions around the world and is a graduate of the Tracking Project’s community mentoring training – a program focused on appropriately and effectively bringing native wisdom into the modern world. In 2015-2016, Patrick was an education innovation fellow at Stanford's d.school. He came into the fellowship with the question: How do we help high school students craft meaningful lives and develop a sense of purpose? Hence, the birth of Project Wayfinder. Patrick is a Fulbright Scholar and a graduate of Brown University.
Dan O'Neil
Dan O'Neil
Director of Auxiliary Programs, Congressional School

Tech Tools You Can Start Using Tomorrow

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
Experience web based tools in action that you can start using tomorrow with your Auxiliary Programs. Trello, Workplace, Wrike, Google Drive, and many more tools are out there that can make it easier to track tasks, communicate with staff and save you time in the long run. This session will showcase features from these and other web based options shared by directors and technology experts working directly in our industry.
Noel Pardo
Noel Pardo
Director of Campus Initiatives, Tabor Academy

Building from the Top Down: Admin Training

  60 minutes
  Beginner
How do you build up your admin team for the summer to achieve your vision and the mission of the school/summer program? Come explore with me a model for developing your admin team into the best professionals they can be. In turn your staff will appreciate excellent leadership and management throughout the summer. Please bring your own models as we will share best practices for creating excellent administrators.
Jim Hilleary
Jim Hilleary
Director of Auxiliary Programs

Mindful Multitasking

  60 minutes
  Beginner
This session aims to give an understanding about what the latest research has to say about our brain and body's ability to multitask and focus on more than one task at one time. All of us face this challenge every day of our life as we balance multiple daily tasks, short-term projects, and long-term projects as well as our own personal lives. We will learn about a variety of time management techniques and concentration & mindfulness practices designed to help you filter some (but probably not all!) of the chaos out of your life.
Paul Lepore, PhD
Paul Lepore, PhD
Associate Dean, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Arizona State University

The Sociology of Summer Camp

  60 minutes
  Beginner
For many Americans, summer camp provides some of the most poignant memories from childhood and adolescence. So why do camps “work” and how might you look at what happens at camp to understand how other complex, educational organizations operate? Using a sociological lens, we will unpack what makes camps tick so that we might gain an understanding into the organizational aspects that make camps unique and offer insights on how you might maximize the impact of your own summer program offerings.
Christiana Rawlings
Christiana Rawlings
Director of Admission & Residential Life, Hotchkiss School

Residential Curriculum – The Foundation for Community Building

  60 minutes
  Beginner
Bring your mission statement to life through a Residential (or a Community) Curriculum. Share your approach to fostering a vibrant and nurturing community while creating a curriculum for an intentional learning experience. Discuss the objectives you expect your students and instructors will meet by the close of your summer session, the methods and resources your team will utilize to teach and practice those objectives and how to assess or measure the personal (and collective) growth of your community members.
Betsey Neiva
Betsey Neiva
Director of Auxiliary Programming, Germantown Friends School

Professional Development for After School Professionals

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
Children deserve to interact with well trained, highly motivated, and enthusiastic adults during every minute of their school day, including the hours after school. This workshop will examine how to offer the same broad set of professional opportunities that are made available to school-day faculty and staff (including workshops, evaluation, feedback, and team building) to the individuals who work with students during the hours after school.
Bill Rouse
Bill Rouse
Founding Partner, AUXS, Auxiliary Services Organization

Better Benchmarking Data: Auxiliary Survey Content and Design

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
We all know that data can be a powerful tool in decision-making. From salaries to revenue to enrollment, many of us seek valid, comparable benchmarking data from peer schools across the country. Come join a discussion about which national survey data would be most valuable to you regarding summer and auxiliary programming at independent schools. The results of this discussion will lead directly to the content and design of surveys and reports in the coming year.
Jeff Malloy
Jeff Malloy
Summer Program Director, Oak Hall School

A Product/Process/Price Framework for Auxiliary and Summer Programs

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
These days in the summer camp / auxiliary programming marketplace, everyone is hanging a shingle. Using a price, product, and process framework this session presents an intentional method to design and evaluate your programs. Discover where you fit in this highly competitive marketplace. Do you try to have the best product for your campers? Do you try create the most unique experience for your campers? Do you try to provide the best value and service to your families?
Jim Patterson
Jim Patterson
Director of Summer Programs, Harvard-Westlake School

Leading on the Edges

  60 minutes
  Beginner
Summer and auxiliary programs offer unique, and sometimes challenging, leadership opportunities. Come ready to share your thoughts and ask questions about leadership. We will start the conversation by addressing relationship building, administrative dilemmas, and community partnerships and then move on to topics generated by attendees.
Nat Saltonstall
Nat Saltonstall
Director of Summer Programs, Beaver Country Day School

Building a Strategic Auxiliary Programs Plan

  60 minutes
  Beginner
Are you interested in elevating your school's auxiliary program performance? This session will provide a framework for identifying school assets, defining strategic goals, and developing a coherent auxiliary programs plan that maximizes your school's potential. With a focused plan in place, your school will be able to implement programs that positively influence school admissions, create efficiencies in auxiliary services, and increase non-tuition revenue to support the mission of your school. Using examples of successful models at Beaver Country Day School and Sidwell Friends School, this session will give you the tools needed to turn your auxiliary programs into critical assets.
Gary Esposito
Gary Esposito
Business Manager, Wheeler School

Business 101

  60 minutes
  Beginner
Most of us working at Independent Schools as Auxiliary Directors have two main responsibilities that are not mutually exclusive and they present a formidable management challenge. We are charged with creating alternative revenue centers that contribute to the school’s operating budget and reduce their reliance on tuition while supporting the school’s mission to provide high quality programs and offerings to our students and families. Finding the right balance between adding to the School’s bottom line and providing services to our families is the challenge. Gary and Bob will facilitate a session addressing this challenge as well as strategies on building an effective relationship with faculty, staff, and administrators at your school.
Laura Kelly
Laura Kelly
Owner, Handwork Studio

How to Use Vendor Partnerships to Accomplish Your Goals

  60 minutes
  Beginner
A panel discussion with four veteran auxiliary and camp professionals who use vendor partners to achieve growth goals for their school. Whether it be to draw in new families, fill a unique niche program that you can’t internally provide or bring in additional revenue, working with vendors partners can be a part of your strategic growth plan. However, vendor partners can also brings unique challenges: Will a partner take revenues from your own internal programs? How do you incorporate a vendor's team into your culture? How do you vet a good partner? What operational changes are needed to integrate a partner into your program? What are the different payment options for such partnerships?
Mike Jacobs
Mike Jacobs
Director of Auxiliary Programs, Saint Andrew's School

Rentals – Show Me The Money!

  60 minutes
  Beginner
Under pressure to bring in more revenue, many schools are turning to renting their facilities. This can be a relatively easy way to increase auxiliary revenue as well as enhance community relations. But as with all programs -- be intentional! Join two veterans as we share the good, the bad, and the ugly regarding rentals. We will examine the pros/cons of renting facilities as well as outline best practices and important things to consider including pricing, insurance, UBIT, policies, and many other topics.
Paula Williams
Paula Williams
Director, Think Academy, Albuquerque Academy

Partnering with Admissions

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
Auxiliary programs provide opportunities to showcase independent schools and foster productive admission work. Learn about the partnership between Albuquerque Academy’s Think Academy Admission departments and explore potential events, activities, and internal policies to bring new students into your school community. Join this session to maximize the admissions potential of your summer and other auxiliary programs. Learn how to design specific programs that engage youth on your campus in experiences that attract new inquiries and applicants.
Kerisha Taboh
Kerisha Taboh
Front End Developer, 829 Studios

So You Have a Website, Now What?

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
Everyone knows that having a website is key if you want to maintain and grow your summer and auxiliary program. Strategic marketing requires a year-round effort to see success throughout the year. In this session, you will learn some tips and tricks to increase your online presence, leads, sales, and profits. Key session takeaways will include: how to get more traffic through optimization, how to measure the results of your marketing efforts, and quick tricks to increase your web-to-lead conversion rate.
Maggie Magner
Maggie Magner
Director of Summer Programs, Fenn School

“Kids Do Well If They Can” – A Fundamental Shift in Understanding and Managing Challenging Behaviors

  60 minutes
  Beginner
Based on the work of Dr. Stuart Ablon at the Think:Kids center at Mass General Hospital, we’ll explore the powerful shift in his research-based understanding of kids with challenging behaviors. This session will briefly introduce participants to the Collaborative Problem Solving approach, the notion of “Skills not Will”, and tackle the conventional discipline/reward system that educators, parents and caregivers have been using for decades. Entire schools (and the presenters’ camp) have moved their staff trainings toward this more compassionate and effective model with compelling results. Get ready to rethink what you know about training your team in managing difficult behaviors.
Karen McCann McClelland
Karen McCann McClelland
Director of Auxiliary Programs, Sidwell Friends

Blue Oceans, Coronas, and Brand

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
Join two veteran directors and SPARC alums as they discuss how they have exponentially grown their Auxiliary Programs thru program design, marketing, and brand management. In this session, we will also explore some real life examples from Fortune 500 companies that can be applied to our work in Independent Schools and specifically Auxiliary Departments everywhere. Join us for this follow-up to last year’s session on Co-Branding with your School and Camp Programs.
Lee Biear
Lee Biear
Marketing Specialist, 829 Studios

A Value Proposition Worth Accelerated Commitment to Your Program

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
Every summer program offers a valuable experience for children, but many programs are challenged to express this vision through marketing. You can do this by creating a compelling value proposition to explain the unique experience that your summer program delivers. Learn how to showcase benefits families will gain by highlighting what sets your program apart from the large number of choices. Leave with a plan to develop your signature value proposition to make it easier for families to enroll in your program faster.
Mark Notaro
Mark Notaro
Director of Operations, Episcopal Academy

Campus Safety and Risk Management

  60 minutes
  Beginner
As campuses become the hub of year-round activity for many families, schools need to consider how to provide a safe and secure space for students, faculty, staff, parents and visitors. Most schools place an emphasis on this during the school year, but don't devote the same resources to this during summer and after hours programming. Explore how one school has made this a priority for all campus activities.
Elena Gosalvez Blanco
Elena Gosalvez Blanco
Director of Exeter Summer, Phillips Exeter Academy

A Conversation About Enrollment: Understanding Trends, Controlling Goals

  60 minutes
  Intermediate
How do we set our enrollment goals? Can we make sure we reach them? What current enrollment trends are we facing? Do we understand what factors impact our numbers? Can we prevent some trends and react to others in effective ways? To open the conversation, we will draw on the perspective of a program that is celebrating its 100th session before discussing our experiences with different summer program models to try to understand the current state of an ever-changing market that is influenced by demographic realities, growing competition, global issues, and cultural shifts.
Alex McCoy
Alex McCoy
Assistant Director of Auxiliary Programs, Sidwell Friends School

A, B, C’s of Auxiliary Programs

  60 minutes
  Beginner
The 'building blocks' of auxiliary programs can start with some of our youngest 'clients' as well as the earliest / latest hours on campus. This session will present case studies from various independent schools for the following programs: early childhood learning centers/daycares, enrichment workshops, before and after care, and conference days/no school events. Learn about different models. Discuss the benefits and challenges with each type of program. Leave with an action plan to create or change current offerings.
Dave Malter
Dave Malter
Founder, ProfessorDave.camp

Developing a Culture of Giving: Creating a Workplace of Engaged Employees

  60 minutes
  Beginner
In a culture of success increasingly driven by the number of “likes” or “followers”, as leaders in youth development we carry a responsibility to help our staff develop coping skills outside of the virtual world. As we continue to work with a generation of staff who are driven by praise, how can we manage those expectations and still fulfill our own HUGE responsibility of caring for other people’s children? This workshop will help you recognize the keys to a Culture of Giving and how to develop this culture in your own environment.

Faq

Answers to your most pressing questions.


The conference officially begins at 8:00am on Thursday, October 26 with most attendees arriving Wednesday evening. The conference concludes at 12:00pm on Saturday, October 28.

Reservations at the Hotel Valley Ho are first come, first served, and you can make your reservation in either of two ways:

Reserve your room online by using the following link: SPARC 2017 Reservations. You can also access the discounted room rate through the Hotel Valley Ho website booking engine and using the code “SPARC2017” in the group code field.

Reserve your room by calling the hotel directly at 866-882-4484 and letting them know that you are with SPARC.

The discounted room rate is $199 per night (plus taxes and fees). The discounted room rate is also extended 3 nights before and after the conference so feel free to extend your stay to enjoy Phoenix and Scottsdale. Once the reserved block of hotel rooms has been fully booked, the rates are subject to the Valley Ho’s pricing when booking.

Yes, breakfast, snacks, and lunch are provided to all attendees on October 26 and October 27, and then breakfast only on Saturday, October 28. There will also be an evening reception on Thursday, October 26, on the Skyline Rooftop Terrace overlooking Camelback Mt. and downtown Scottsdale.

The Hotel Valley Ho is 7.5 miles (approximately 15 minutes) from Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport. Taxi is recommended.

The average temperatures in Scottsdale in late October range from a high of 85 degrees to a low of 60 degrees. And sunshine is abundant!

Cancellations made prior to July 31, 2017 will receive a 75% refund. Cancellations made between August 1, 2017 and September 30, 2017 will receive a 50% refund. No refunds will be granted for cancellations made on or after October 1, 2017. All registered participants who do not cancel and do not attend are liable for the entire registration fee. We are unable to make exceptions for emergencies, however you may send someone from your same organization in your place.

Register

Space is limited, sign up today!


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Conference Pricing


Attendee

$695 ($595 until August 1)
  • Attendance at all workshops and sessions
  • Inspirational keynotes
  • Breakfast, snack, and lunch during conference
  • Networking reception
  • Engagement with Business Partners

Business Partners (Invitation only)

Contact us for details
  • Direct access to decision-makers from independent schools
  • Attendance at all conference keynotes and workshops
  • Table integrated into conference space
  • Mention in eblasts and social media posts
  • Limited number of Business Partners

Located at Hotel Valley Ho

Convenient Flight, Short Drive


Hotel Valley Ho
From $199 per night

Hotel Valley Ho

6850 E Main St, Scottsdale, AZ 85251 (480) 248-2000

Hotel Valley Ho is where historic charm meets modern luxury, effortlessly fusing the best of vintage personality with contemporary styling. Stay steps away from Downtown Scottsdale's renowned dining, shopping and art galleries for a stay that's both relaxing and entertaining. Click to see all the cool things to do nearby. Admire panoramic views of Camelback Mountain and Downtown Scottsdale atop the seven-story Tower. Looking to host a splendid lunch, unforgettable sunset cocktail reception or a mind-and-body-balancing yoga class? Sky Line Rooftop is the perfect venue to host your next, breathtaking event.

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Contact us

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SPARC Business Partners

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  • DATE

    Oct 26-28, 2017
  • LOCATION

    Scottsdale, Arizona
  • REMAINING

    40 Tickets
  • SPEAKERS

    20+ Speakers