January 31, 2022 Update

The following message was sent to the ASHE Community on January 31, 2022 from ASHE 2022 President Dr. Joy Gaston Gayles and ASHE Executive Director Dr. Jason P. Guilbeau.

Dear ASHE Community,

Tomorrow (February 1) our 2022 Program Committee Chairs Bridget Turner Kelly and Lara Perez-Felkner and ASHE Director of Conference and Events Sendi Brewster will send out the 47th Annual Conference Call For Proposals. This will include information to submit to the 14 conference sections and four Council pre-conferences as well as the call for volunteers to serve as reviewers, chairs, and discussants. As you consider submitting a proposal or volunteering, we want to share some logistical updates about our 2022 conference scheduled for November 16-19 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Humanizing Higher Education

First, we want to recognize the tremendous toll these past two years have taken on us as individuals and collectively. We're reflecting on remarks Joy made at the end of the 2021 conference when she announced the 2022 theme, Humanizing Higher Education: "The past couple of years or so mark one of the most challenging periods in recent world history. As people and a scholarly community, we’ve experienced (and continue to experience) a traumatic global pandemic that has changed life as we knew it.... In 2020, political actors around the world continued to do harm through state-sponsored violence and discrimination.... As the world slowly opens up and we adjust to a new normal we must bring with us the lessons we’ve learned and are learning during this period in world history. One call to action that resonated with me as I thought about the Presidential theme for ASHE 2022 involves the opportunity to “come back” from the global health pandemic differently from how we entered it. The trauma and hurt, coupled with deep-seated social and political divides across the world, require healing, and that takes a lot of vulnerability and courage."
We hope that this year leading up to the conference in November, we can think collectively about what it means to humanize higher education through research, policy, and practice. There are many people, institutions, and structures that use humanizing approaches. Over the next year, we want to create spaces for us to learn from and with each other about various approaches to valuing all people, particularly people marginalized in society by dehumanizing systems and structures. Further, we hope the theme will generate and spark conversation among ASHE members about what humanizing approaches can be and how we can embody them in the important work that we do.  The theme will be evident in programming throughout the year as well as during the conference. As a reminder (and as is made clear in the call for proposals) connection to the theme is not a requirement for proposals submissions nor is it a part of the proposal review rubric.

Plans for the 2022 Conference

Over the past two years, ASHE leaders, staff, and members have continued to uphold the values of the Association while also living through and managing unprecedented world events. As we have done throughout the past two years, the ASHE Board of Directors and Staff continue to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic, including CDC directives on event gatherings, local mandates, and best practices.
Based on what we know now, we are moving forward with plans for the General Conference to once again be in-person and to offer a Virtual Ticket, Council Pre-Conferences to return to in-person with some virtual offerings, and Professional Development events to mostly remain virtual. This will build upon the success of our virtual events in 2020 and 2021 as well as the in-person conference in 2021. For more information about presentation formats and offerings, click here.
We are hopeful for continued advancements in COVID-19 mitigation. We were able to gather safely in 2021, mainly due to the tremendous steps of the Puerto Rican government and the shared responsibility entrenched by the Puerto Rican people. While Las Vegas has different requirements, the ASHE Staff is continuing to develop our COVID-19 Mitigation Policy and Guide. More information will be released in the coming months because, as we've learned, mitigation practices and government regulations constantly change. ASHE will be proactive and take the steps necessary to help ensure the safety of our attendees, hotel staff, and local Las Vegas residents.
If you were one of the attendees of our conference in San Juan, you undoubtedly felt the energy and importance of gathering in person. We plan to continue this momentum into Las Vegas. We also recognize that some members may not be ready or able to travel and that some institutions and organizations are restricting travel spending for the foreseeable future. We remained committed to providing opportunities for your to engage with the conference content through the Virtual Ticket in real-time and through recordings.
To help us best plan for November, we invite you to take 1-2 minutes to take this 5 question survey. We will use this information to continue informing our decisions.


The ASHE Staff will provide more detailed information regarding registration and hotel accommodations in the coming months. You can find a full list of dates and deadlines at www.ashe.ws/conference.

Finally, we will promise to provide you another update prior to the proposal submission deadline on April 18, regardless of any changes.
In the meantime, if you have any questions, please feel free to email us.

2022 Conference Format and Updates

The ASHE Staff, in collaboration with conference leaders, has begun to plan for and the Board of Directors and Council Leaders have approved moving forward with an in-person conference with a virtual ticket. This plan initially includes:

  • Pre-Conferences: The CAHEP, CEP, CIHE, and CPPHE Pre-Conference Forums will be held in person on Wednesday, November 16. Select sessions from each Pre-Conference will be live-streamed through the Virtual Ticket. As with the General Conference, at least one presenter from each session will need to attend in person. To enhance the pre-conference experience and further connect our Councils, there will be additional joint pre-conference sessions throughout the day on Wednesday.

  • Posters: Poster presentations will once again only be offered virtually and be available throughout the month of November. Accepted poster presenters will provide their poster in a PDF as well as record a 3-4 minute video. In-person and virtual attendees will be able to review posters and provide feedback, just as in 2020 and 2021.

  • Roundtables: At this time we plan to offer roundtable presentations both virtually and in person. When submitting a roundtable proposal, authors will indicate their presentation preference. Accepted virtual presentations will be open to virtual and in-person conference attendees. In-person roundtable presentations will be offered during the in-person conference only (not available to virtual attendees) and at least one roundtable paper author would need to attend in-person. We once again plan to offer these in break-out rooms to allow for social distancing as well as to reduce ambient sound from an abudance of presentations happening in one place.

  • Virtual Presentations: Proposals for self-designed paper sessions and interactive symposium sessions will have the option to indicate if they would like to present a fully virtual session. This will mean that all presenters will join the session virtually (similar to the 2020 and 2021 conferences). We initially anticipate being able to accept a limited number of these proposals with priority for sessions where all presenters are unable to attend the in-person conference.

  • In-Person Presentations: All other accepted proposals for paper sessions; self-designed paper sessions; interactive symposia; and performance, visual, and digital scholarship will be offered in person only. These presentations will be required to have at least one presenter attend the in-person conference. We are working to offer an option for other presenters in a group who are unable to join in person to present virtually.

  • ​Professional Development Events: An additional change to our annual calendar this year will be our professional development events. To offer members opportunities for year-round engagement with ASHE, professional development events will remain virtual but will occur mostly in early 2023 (with a few happening in 2022).

April 1, 2022 Updates

April 1, 2022
Dear ASHE Community,
As promised in our January email, we are writing to share updates with you about our 47th Annual Conference this November. As we have done since early 2020, the ASHE Board of Directors and Staff have continued to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic, including the vaccine and booster availability, CDC directives on event gatherings, and mandates and recommendations from Nevada and Las Vegas governments.
As we shared in our January email, we will offer an in-person conference and pre-conferences in Las Vegas along with the option of a virtual ticket for select live streaming sessions and recorded sessions.
Humanizing Higher Education
We know that members continue to navigate the global health pandemic in myriad ways, including caring for loved ones, waiting for vaccination approval for children under five, returning or continuing teaching in-person, returning to in-person researching, and more. For many of us, the opportunity to re-connect with each other in person has been important for our wellness. The success of the ASHE conference in Puerto Rico and that of ACPA, AEFP, CSCC, and other associations more recently are a testament to the importance of human connection.
We all also continue to navigate not only the COVID-19 pandemic but also the ills that have long plagued our society. From the "great resignation" within higher education to the racist and transphobic bills being introduced in state capitals across the country, the dehumanization of so many of us and especially those of us with intersecting oppressed identities is important to name here.
Further, we continue to witness violence and injustice happening all around us. The war in Ukraine is leaving millions of families and people without food, clean water, and medical care and fleeing to save their lives. In addition, the confirmation hearing of Ketanji Brown Jackson, the first African American woman to be nominated to the United States Supreme Court, sparked joy in many ways but was also clouded by dehumanization and disdain.
As the 2022 theme, Humanizing Higher Education, alludes to, we have work to do within higher education. We hope that this year leading up to the conference in November, we can think collectively about what it means to humanize higher education through research, policy, and practice.
We know many of you are working on your conference proposals (or soon will be). We want to thank the 229 ASHE members who engaged with the NCFDD-ASHE Writing Challenge over the past few weeks. We are happy to share that we will repeat the challenge in the fall as you prepare final papers for the conference. As you continue or begin your proposal, we encourage you to consider how your research humanizes people. While a connection to the theme is not a requirement for proposals submissions, nor is it a part of the proposal review rubric (and as is made clear in the call for proposals), our collective work has the ability to recenter people (e.g., students, faculty, staff, and our communities) in our work.
Conference and Events Updates
As many states have done, on February 12, the mask mandate for the state of Nevada was fully lifted. As we learned last year when planning the 2021 conference, much can change in a matter of weeks, much less months. In July 2021, the conference leadership team was in San Juan and mask mandates were being lifted; three weeks later with the on-set of the Delta variant, they were back in place (with additional restrictions).
As of this email, Clark County, Nevada is considered by the CDC to be a Medium level community. According to CDC guidelines, this means that masks are recommended only for people who are immunocompromised or at high risk for severe illness. However, per our COVID-19 Mitigation Policies and Guidelinesat this time, we still plan to require masks during the annual conference. While this requirement was drafted in January and was guided by the state regulation, as an Association, we have the ability to require additional mitigation procedures during our events and meetings.
Additionally, for the 2022 conference, in-person attendees will be required to be both vaccinated and boosted. As a scholarly and scientific association, we understand that our peers in the medical community have found vaccines and boosters to be safe and the best way to continue fighting the pandemic. We will once again using the CLEAR app to verify this information and will follow up with attendees in the weeks preceding the conference with instructions.
Of the responses to the January survey, nearly 80% of respondents were planning to or leaning to attend the conference in person. While we encourage as many members as possible to join us in Las Vegas, we are once again offering a Virtual Ticket that will offer live-streaming access to select conference sessions as well as recorded, on-demand access to all other conference sessions.
As of February 2022, nearly every ASHE member institution and organization has lifted travel restrictions. We do realize that while travel is allowed, funding may remain limited. We are hopeful that the affordability of Las Vegas as a conference location will provide expanded financial accessibility:
We encourage you to register and book your hotel room early to save. For more information about the conference, please review the tentative schedule linked below.
We hope that you will consider submitting a proposal or volunteering for one of the 14 conference sections or 4 pre-conferences by the Monday, April 18, 2022 deadline. Please note that this is a firm deadline and it will not be extended. This deadline allows the Program Committee and ASHE Staff time to manage the review and selection process while also navigating their work and personal responsibilities. As a reminder, you can submit a proposal and/or volunteer at any point during the 76-day window in which the submission and volunteer system is open.
We will share more about conference keynote speakers, professional development events, and a series of fall Presidential engagement opportunities in the coming weeks and months.