2017 Region IV-East Regional Conference - re:DETROIT

November 11 - November 14, 2017
Renaissance Center, Detroit, MI

Register Online


Detroit isn’t just another conference location. It is a mindset. A spirit. A community. And this year, we will be honoring our host city like never before. Join us for the 2017 NASPA Region IV-E annual conference November 12-14 to embrace all that Detroit inspires: reinvention, redefinition, revitalization, and rebirth. 2017 is re:DETROIT.

Detroit, MI

Detroit was named in the New York Times '52 Places to Go in 2017' and we are excited to share this wonderful city with you! With so many things to do and places to see, we've narrowed down a few of our favorites:

Renaissance Center

The Renaissance Center (GMRENCEN) rises up along the Detroit Riverfront and consists of seven interconnected skyscrapers. Visitors can enjoy 29 different restaurants, beautiful riverfront views and various retailers without leaving the complex. Just outside is the stunning Riverfront Conservatory and Hart Plaza.

Guests interested in shipping packages directly to the hotel for the conference should use the following address: 

Detroit Marriott to the Renaissance Center 
Attention: “Guest Name” 
NASPA IV-E 2017 Regional Conference 
400 Renaissance Center - East Loading Dock 
Detroit, MI 48243

Candadian Excursion

Join your NASPA Region IV-East colleagues and Canadian colleagues at an optional dinner in Canada. Fee of $35.00 US per person. Payable from the regional conference registration website. Includes transportation. November 13 at 6 pm.

Transportation and Parking
QLINE - Detroit's modern streetcar

A three-hour pass is $1.50 US and a day pass is $3 US. To purchase tickets, and for a live map of where the streetcars are located, download the QLINE Detroit mobile app for Apple or Android. If you are interested in taking the QLINE from the Renaissance Center to Pre-Con at the WSU Student Center you can use either the Warren Ave. stop or the Ferry St. stop. The trip takes approximately 30-45 minutes. 

MoGo - Detroit's new bikeshare program

Day passes run for $8. Passes can be purchased at each station or you can download the apps (their are two).

Rideshare services

Both Uber and Lyft operate in the Detroit area, including to and from the Detroit Metropolitain Airport

The Detroit People Mover

Token machines are available at each station. Cost is one token per ride. Tokens are $0.75 US each.

DDOT 53 Bus Route

Adult Base Fare - $1.50 US.

Parking at Wayne State University

It is recommended to park in Structure 2 off of Anthony Wayne Dr. (Third Street). Rates for this structure are $7.75 US per entry. Please note that there is construction going on in the lot in front of the stucture as WSU is in the process of putting in new student housing. 

Parking at the Renaissance Center

Parking at the Renaissance Center is $25 per day.

Conference Updates

We will post regularly with updates and more information on the 2017 Region IV-E Conference.  Be sure to check back regularly for the most up-to-date information! Click "Learn More" to see the full conference committee.

Learn More →

Presented By

Region IV-E


This event is most likely to influence these groups.

  • AVP or “Number Two”
  • Faculty
  • Graduate
  • Mid-Level
  • New Professional
  • Senior Level
  • Undergraduate
  • Vice President for Student Affairs

Call for Programs

Call for Programs is closed.

Learn More
Important Dates
  • August 16, 2017: Presenters Notified
  • October 20, 2017: Regular Registration Ends
  • October 21, 2017: Late/Onsite Registration Begins


Let others know you are coming!

Use this hashtag to see what others are sharing #reDETROIT17


  • James L. Moore, III, Ph.D.

    James L. Moore, III, Ph.D.

    Interim Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer, The Ohio State University
    Opening Keynote Speaker

    Speaker Bio

  • Sue Borrego, Ph.D.

    Sue Borrego, Ph.D.

    Chancellor, University of Michigan Flint
    Monday Keynote Speaker

    Speaker Bio

  • Jeffrey R. Docking, Ph.D.

    Jeffrey R. Docking, Ph.D.

    President, Adrian College
    Closing Keynote Speaker

    Speaker Bio


We look forward to seeing you in Detroit! Please note: All events and times are subject to change -- please check back regularly for the latest schedule and details about conference events.

Full Schedule

Sat, Nov 11

8:00AM – 5:00PM
Women in Student Affairs - Full Day Pre-Conference
8:00AM – 5:30PM
Student Affairs Leaders of Tomorrow (SALT) Institute
1:00PM – 3:00PM
Regional Board Meeting
1:00PM – 5:00PM
SSAO Canadian Excursion
2:00PM – 5:00PM
Registration/Check In - on site

Sun, Nov 12

8:00AM – 12:15PM
Community Colleges - Half Day Pre-Conference
8:00AM – 12:15PM
Student Affairs Director Competencies: Preparing for Transitional Leadership - Half Day Pre-Conference
8:30AM – 12:30PM
Student Affairs Leaders of Tomorrow (SALT) Institute
8:45AM – 1:00PM
SSAO Institute
9:00AM – 5:00PM
Registration/Check In - on site
1:00PM – 2:00PM
Educational Session 1
2:10PM – 3:10PM
Educational Session 2
Buses Start Departing for Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History
4:00PM – 6:00PM
Opening Keynote & Welcome
James L. Moore, III, Ph.D., Interim Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer, The Ohio State University
4:15PM – 4:45PM
Coffee and Cookie Break
6:00PM – 8:00PM
Reception and Gallery Viewing
9:00PM – 11:00PM
IV-E Social

Mon, Nov 13

Fun Run/Yoga/Zumba/Workit
7:30AM – 12:00PM
Registration/Check In - on site
8:30AM – 9:30AM
Educational Session 3
9:00AM – 5:00PM
SSAO Lounge Open
9:45AM – 10:45AM
Educational Session 4
11:00AM – 12:00PM
Educational Session 5
12:00PM – 1:45PM
Lunch and Keynote
Sue Borrego, Ph.D., Chancellor, University of Michigan Flint
2:00PM – 5:00PM
Registration/Check In Open - on site
2:00PM – 3:00PM
Educational Session 6
3:15PM – 4:15PM
Educational Session 7
4:45PM – 5:30PM
Knowledge Community Roundtables
5:30PM – 6:30PM
Regional Business Meeting
Canadian Dinner Excursion
Dinner on your own
Knowledge Community Dinners
WISA Social
9:00PM – 11:00PM
IV-E Social

Tue, Nov 14

Fun Run/Yoga/Zumba/Workit
8:00AM – 10:00AM
Registration/Check In - on site
8:00AM – 9:00AM
Educational Session 8
9:15AM – 10:15AM
Educational Session 9
10:30AM – 11:30AM
Educational Session 10
11:30AM – 1:00PM
Closing CeleBruncheon
Jeffrey R. Docking, Ph.D., President, Adrian College

Pre-Conference Programs & Events

Pre-conference sessions are extended learning sessions that give you an opportunity to go in-depth into specific topics with experts and colleagues before the conference officially begins. There will be Full Day Pre-Conferences on Saturday, November 11, 2017 and Half Day Pre-Conferences on Sunday, Novermber 12, 2017. All will be located at Wayne State University's Student Center Building, which is easily accessible from the Marriott at the Renaissance Center via the QLINE. All Pre-Conference Programs require pre-registration, which can be added when you register for the full conference.


Pre-Conference Programs Chair

Eboni Turnbow- Pre-Conference Programs Chair

Student Affairs Leaders of Tomorrow Institute Team

Raúl R. Fernández - SALT Co-Chair

Shai Collier - SALT Co-Chair

Leigh A. Dunewood - SALT Intern

Student Affairs Leaders of Tomorrow (SALT) Institute

Saturday, November 11th • 08.00 AM – 05.30 PM

Sunday, November 12 • 8:30 AM – 12:30 PM • 384 Student Center Building, Wayne State University

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The Student Affairs Leaders of Tomorrow (SALT) Institute is a pre-conference that serves as a way to enhance the experiences of undergraduate students as they are being mentored and engaged into the field of Student Affairs and Higher Education. Throughout this institute a number of activities, sessions and panels will be offered to assist them in the discernment process of their future career in Student Affairs.

Institute Committee

Raúl R. Fernández

Coordinator for First Year Programs & Campus Life

Illinois Institute of Technology


Region IV-E Board Member and Region IV-E SALT Co-Chair

Shai Collier

Student Success Advisor, Academic and Career Development-University College

Indiana University Purdue University-Indianapolis (IUPUI)


Region IV-E SALT Co-Chair

Leigh A. Dunewood

NUFP Fellow

Bowling Green State University


Region IV-E SALT Intern

Learn more

Women in Student Affairs - Full Day Pre-conference

Saturday, November 11th • 08.00 AM – 05.00 PM

Hilberry EF - Student Center Building, Wayne State University

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  • Current Experiences of Senior Women in Student Affairs Panel
  • Intersection of Gender Identity & Race in our Work
  • Best Practices for Navigating Political Cultures
  • Essential Competency Area Development & Exposure

Full Day Pre-Conference Schedule

8:00am Check In & Light Breakfast
9:00am Welcome & Overview
9:15am - 10:30am Session 1 Essential Competency Area Development & Exposure Dr. Laura Knudson
10:45am - 12:00pm Session 2 Best Practices for Navigating Political Cultures Dr. Chiara Hensley
12:15pm - 1:15pm Lunch & Roundtable Discussions
1:30pm - 2:45pm Session 3 Current Experiences of Women in Student Affairs (Panel) Heather Browning, Dr. Chiara Hensley, Nikki Dunham
3:00pm - 4:15pm Session 4 Intersection of Identity & Race in our Work in Higher Education Dr. Barbara Avery, Tanya Upthegrove
4:30pm Thank you

Mary Duckworth, Associate Director of Residence Life for Learning and Development
Lake Forest College

Julia Heck, Associate Director
Office of the Ombuds, Eastern Michigan University 

Dr. Laura Knudson, Assistant Vice Provost for Student Advocacy and Support
University of Minnesota

Laura Knudson, Ph.D. is the Assistant Vice Provost for Student Advocacy and Support in the Office for Student Affairs at the University of Minnesota. She has spent her higher education career at the University of Minnesota, starting with a graduate assistantship in student activities over 13 years ago.  In her current position, she oversees the Office for Community Standards, the Parent and Family Program, Student Parent HELP Center, Student Legal Services, as well as the OSA Care Manager. She is also responsible for coordinating the OSA response to student crisis situations. She serves on several University-wide committees and is very active on the Bias Response and Referral Network. Laura received her bachelor’s degree in Mass Communication from North Dakota State University and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development from the University of Minnesota.

Dr. Chiara Hensley, Assistant Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs
Eastern Michigan University

Dr. Chiara Hensley is a native of Ann Arbor, Michigan. She received her Doctorate degree in Higher Education Leadership and Administration from Nova Southeastern University. A Master of Arts degree in Counseling from Eastern Michigan University, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Education from the University of Michigan. Passionate about issues of gender equality, universal education, and race equity and inclusion. Her service and professional work focuses on the development of women, institutions, individuals and communities, as well as the development of children, youth, and the elderly in the context of the advancement of civilization through unity, consultation, and the educational, spiritual, and moral development of humankind. Chiara is also a dedicated, strategic educator and servant leader with an emphasis on conflict resolution, collaboration, consultation, social, economic and restorative justice, continuous systemic redesign and improvement, program evaluation and assessment, retention, academic success, and personalized learner-centered growth and development. Dr. Hensley currently serves as the Assistant Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs at Eastern Michigan University. Her previous work includes service at Pasadena City College in the Counseling and Student Learning Services area, holding a tenured position as Assistant Professor of Counseling. During her tenure, she also served as Counseling Department Coordinator, and Campus Diversity Coordinator

Heather Browning, Assistant Director
Multicultural Affairs, Northwestern University

Nikki Dunham, Assistant Director
Residence Life, Northwestern University

Dr. Barbara Avery, Vice Chancellor for Campus Inclusion and Student Life
University of Michigan-Flint

Dr. Barbara Avery was appointed to the position of Vice Chancellor for Campus Inclusion and Student Life at the University of Michigan-Flint in 2015. She holds a Doctorate in Educational Administration from Pepperdine University, a Master’s degree in History and a Bachelor’s degree in Philosophy from the University of California-San Diego. Her dissertation topic looked at the importance of diversity and interculturalism in teacher education programs.

Prior to moving to her role at the University of Michigan-Flint she served as Vice President at Holy Names University in Oakland, California and more recently Occidental College in Los Angeles, California. Starting her career at the University of California San Diego, her alma mater, her focus has always been on making sure that all students have access to what they need to be successful. Her passion outside of education has been supporting children in the foster care system. She also balances her life with lifelong love of hiking in all parts of the country, small conversations especially with friends and yoga when she can find the time.

Tanya Upthegrove, Director
Office of Educational Opportunity Initiatives, University of Michigan-Flint

Tanya Upthegrove has served with a range of direct service & intermediary nonprofits leading teams & managing programs ranging from $30,000 to $14-million in private, state, federal funds to address issue areas including education, workforce development, volunteer engagement, conservation and disaster response. Having lived, worked & consulted in the Chicagoland region, Southeast Asia & Metro DC, Tanya returned to Michigan to focus her efforts on community impact across the state and within her hometown, Inkster. Upon completing her MBA, Tanya made the decision to lay down roots within higher education administration, leveraging her prior skills & experience to achieve transformative impact both for students & local communities. In her current role as Director for the Office of Educational Opportunity Initiatives at University of Michigan-Flint, she oversees college access & success programs for underrepresented students at UM-Flint, and the broader Flint community. Ms. Upthegrove has successfully stabilized and repositioned her department to strengthen its campus-wide credibility along with the morale and confidence of her staff. She also led efforts to revamp the Promise Scholar’s Program Curriculum which gave rise to a 30% decrease in the percentage of students on academic probation and an overall 12% student retention increase.

Community Colleges - Half Day Pre-conference

Sunday, November 12th • 08.00 AM – 12.15 PM

Hilberry C - Student Center Building, Wayne State University

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  • Culturally Relevant Campuses & Pedagogy
  • Student Success, Engagement, & Transfer to 4-Year
  • Institutional Differences: Working @ Community College vs. 4-Year

Half Day Pre-Conference Schedule

8:00am Check In
8:30am Welcome & Overview
8:35am - 9:40am Session 1 Student Success, Engagement, & Transfer to 4-Year Melissa Payne, Shelley Milks, Laura Riley
9:45am - 10:50am Session 2 Institutional Differences: Working @ Community College vs. 4-Year Dr. Scott Peska, Angela Mitchel, Dr. Christopher Lewis
10:55am - 12:00pm Session 3 Culturally Relevant Campuses & Pedagogy Dr. Llyod Crews, Stacey Jackson
12:05pm Thank you

Melissa Payne, Dean of Students
Kirkwook Community College

Shelley Milks, Orientation Coordinator
Kirkwood Community College

Laura Riley, Academic Advising Coordinator
Kirkwood Community College

Dr. Scott Peska, Dean of Students
Waubonsee Community College

Dr. Scott Peska serves as the Dean for Students at Waubonsee Community College in Sugar Grove, IL, with responsibility for Athletics, Student Life, Learning Assessment (testing), and Student Conduct. He previously has worked at Northern Illinois University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  He received both his baccalaureate and master’s degrees in communication from Illinois State University.  Peska received a doctoral degree in higher education administration at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with  his research focusing on the adjustment of community college transfer students to four-year universities. In NASPA, Dr. Peska is an active member serving as the Region IV-E Public Policy Division Representative, the Regional Representatives Coordinator for the Community College Division, the Enough is Enough Coordinator for the Campus Safety and Violence Prevention Knowledge Community, a reviewer for JSARP, and he served on the 2017 NASPA Annual Conference Leadership Committee.

Angela Mitchel, Dean of Student Success
Illinois Central College

Dr. Christopher Lewis, Dean of Student Services
Lansing Community College

Dr. Christopher Lewis is the Dean of Student Affairs at Lansing Community College. Dr. Lewis has been in the field of Student Affairs for the past 20 years working at both 4-year, professional schools and community colleges. Dr. Lewis is also currently the website and social media coordinator for NASPA Region 4E and on the NASPA Community Colleges Public Policy Division Board. 

Dr. Llyod Crews, Professor
Political Science, Oakland Community College

Dr. Crews holds a Bachelor and Master of Arts degree in Political Science from Clark Atlanta University and a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from Wayne State University.  He has worked in the field of higher education for more than 15 years, beginning at Wayne State University followed by a position at Oakland Community College (OCC) where he has served as Dean of Academic and Student Services at the Royal Oak and Southfield Campuses for the past 12 years.  In August of 2014, he took on a new role as a tenured professor of Political Science at OCC to more fully pursue his role as a public servant.

Stacey Jackson, Coordinator of Student Development
Oakland Community College

Stacey N. Jackson has worked in higher education for 20 years in various administrative roles. She has a B.A. in Communication from Aquinas College, an M.A. in Higher Education General Administration and a graduate certificate in Community College Leadership from Eastern Michigan University. She is currently pursuing a PhD at Eastern Michigan University majoring in Educational Studies with a focus in Urban Education. Her research interests include mentoring, equal educational opportunity, social justice and college readiness. Ms. Jackson’s extensive student affairs experience includes several examples of supervision and program administration. She currently serves as the Associate Dean of Student Services of Oakland Community College (OCC). Prior to coming to OCC, she was the Director of Multicultural Affairs at Aquinas College. Over the last several years, Ms. Jackson has been a member of the Oakland Community College Diversity and Inclusion Committee, been instrumental in the planning and coordination of the annual Martin Luther King Day Convocation and the faculty diversity speakers’ series and Cultural Diversity Month. Ms. Jackson is a Safe Zone ally. The Safe Zone Initiative was created to educate individuals on LGBTQ issues and to help members of the college community (students, professors, administrators, and staff) become better allies and more aware on matters of gender identity and affinity. In addition to her administrative duties, she serves as an adjunct faculty member for the Academic Support Center and Behavioral Sciences department of OCC and Wayne State University’s AEPX program.

Student Affairs Director Competencies: Preparing for Transitional Leadership - Half Day Pre-conference

Sunday, November 12th • 08.00 AM – 12.15 PM

Room 385 - Student Center Building, Wayne State University

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Successful transition to director roles often requires skills that are rarely formally taught, leaving new directors surprised by the challenges of their role. The help proactively cultivate those skills in developing staff, Student Affairs staff at the University of Cincinnati have developed Student Affairs Director Competencies and an associated self-assessment. The session will include:

  • Student Affairs Director Competency Rubric

  • Self-Guided Assessment Tool

  • Competency Engagement & Action Strategies

Half Day Pre-Conference Schedule

8:00am Check In
8:30am Welcome & Overview
8:35am - 12:00pm Sessions
  • SA Director Competency Rubric Introduction
  • Self-Guided Assessment Tool Outcome Discussion and Review
  • Competency Engagement & Action Plan Development
12:05pm Thank you

Heidi C. Pettyjohn, M.A.
Director of Strategic Priorities, Division of Student Affairs, University of Cincinnati

Heidi C. Pettyjohn is the Director of Strategic Priorities for the division of Student Affairs at the University of Cincinnati. In this role, she oversees the implementation of division - wide strategic initiatives and fosters key partnerships with stakeholders throughout UC to further the goals of the division. Prior to this role, she was the first staff person dedicated to Assessment and Program Development for Student Affairs. In 2011, Heidi was a co-founder of Emerging Leaders in Student Affairs (ELSA), a grassroots development and networking group for entry to mid-level staff at UC interested in advancing their careers. Since then, ELSA has become established at UC as a low -stakes training ground for emerging staff in the division of Student Affairs and beyond, hosting professional development events, research symposiums, peer coaching, leadership panels with senior UC officials, and an annual, university-wide staff and faculty day of service.

Angela Fitzpatrick, Ph.D.
UC Women's Center Director, Division of Student Affairs, University of Cincinnati

Angela Fitzpatrick serves as the Director of the Women's Center in the Division of Student Affairs at the University of Cincinnati. Dr. Fitzpatrick holds a PhD in American Culture Studies, and a graduate certificate in Women’s Studies, from Bowling Green State University. She is a feminist activist and educator committed to building community, inspiring action, and uplifting student leaders. Dr. Fitzpatrick has more than a decade of combined experience in academia and in student affairs. Her dedication to campus service has been recognized by the National Society of Leadership and Success.

Senior Student Affairs Officers (SSAO) Institute

Sunday, November 12th • 08.45 AM – 01.00 PM

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Come join other IV-East Senior Student Affairs Officers (defined as Vice Presidents for Student Affairs and “number twos”) for an institute experience designed to connect and inform. The institute will begin on Saturday afternoon where SSAO’s will travel to the University of Windsor in Canada to learn about Canadian Higher Education, Student Affairs, and hear directly from staff and students. On Sunday before the main conference starts, there will be a half-day institute covering topics from the College Presidency to maximizing your NASPA membership. The SSAO lounge will be open beginning Monday where you can grab a quick coffee, interact with other SSAOs, or get some campus work done in between sessions. Lunch on Sunday is included with the institute. We will travel together to the University of Windsor via carpool or van, though you are responsible for your own expenses in Canada.

Institute Co-Chairs:

Michael D. Anthony, Ph.D. – Vice President of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management
Rochester Community and Technical College

Kimberlie Goldsberry, Vice President of Student Affairs/Dean of Students
Carthage College. 

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  • Off Campus Partners
  • Maxient
  • Eventus

For sponsorship and exhibit booth questions, contact:

Rod Waters
.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Sponsorship Info


Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center

Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center
Detroit, MI

We are excited you are joining us this year in Detroit. Guests can work with the Marriott's central reservations team by calling 1.800.352.0831 or can make reservations online. We are beyond the cutoff date for the NASPA rate, so all sleeping rooms will need to be booked at the current selling rate.

Hotel Room Rate/Night
Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center
Renaissance Center, 400 Renaissance Drive, Detroit, Michigan 48243 USA
(313) 568-8000
Selling rate
  • Travel

    The closest airport to the GM Renaissance Center is Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW).

  • Transportation

    DTW to the GM Renaissance Center is about 22 miles away. Uber/Lyft will cost $20-$30. Ride Skoot Shuttle roundtrip from this airport is $40 or $20 one way. There is also onsite parking for $25 per day. The Detroit Amtrak station is 5 miles from the conference location.

  • Weather

    The weather in Detroit during early November will be a high of upper 40s and low of upper 30s.

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