2018 NASPA AVP Institute - Excellence in the “Number Two” Role

January 18 – January 20, 2018
San Diego, California

The NASPA AVP Institute – Excellence in the “Number Two” Role – is an intensive three-day program designed to support and develop AVPs in their unique roles on campus.  The Institute is appropriate for both new and seasoned AVPs, first-timers and returners alike.

About the Institute Model

This exclusive professional development program is an institute.  Unlike conferences where participants choose to participate (or not) in concurrent sessions, during this institute, all attendees will participate in the same cohort experience and are expected to engage fully in all aspects of the program including meals.  It is a very intensive experience, and the program will run into the evening each day.

Register Online


If you report to the vice president for student affairs (or other most senior student affairs officer) on your campus, you’re a “number two” and undoubtedly have a unique and challenging position.  The NASPA AVP Institute – Excellence in the “Number Two” Role, is designed to support AVP success and will help you to navigate the complex individual and institutional challenges that are inherent in the “number two” position.  The Institute’s curriculum focuses on:

  • Innovative and effective leadership in the “number two” role
  • Cultivating just campus communities during an era of increasing student unrest and demands
  • Building and sustaining effective and enriching VPSA-AVP relationships
  • Using data to make decisions and to influence others
  • Understanding and navigating campus politics
  • Thinking and acting strategically for personal and institutional success

Two optional pre-institute sessions will be offered: one for AVPs who are new to the “number two” role and another designed to build AVP capacity in using strategic thinking and data.  All Institute participants must report to the most senior student affairs officer on campus and have substantial responsibility for divisional functions.  Join us in San Diego in January to improve your effectiveness in your challenging role and to expand your AVP peer network.

Click here to see what past institute participants have to say about the NASPA AVP Institute - Excellence in the "Number Two" Role.


Presented By


This event is most likely to influence these groups.

  • AVP or “Number Two”
  • Senior Level


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Use this hashtag to see what others are sharing #AVP18


This exclusive professional development program is an institute. Unlike conferences where participants choose to participate (or not) in concurrent sessions, during this institute all attendees will participate in the same cohort experience and are expected to engage fully in all aspects of the program including meals. It is a very intensive experience, and the program will run into the evening each day. Please plan your travel so that you are able to participate in the entire institute. (The schedule presented here is subject to changes.)

Thu, Jan 18

8:00 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Check-in for Optional Pre-Institute Sessions
9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Pre-Institute Session for New AVPs: Navigating Your First Year (and Beyond) as an AVP
9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Pre-Institute Session: Optimizing Student Affairs Using Strategic Thinking and Data
1:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Institute Welcome and Introductions
1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Institute Session: Bringing Our Best Selves
2:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.
2:45 p.m. – 4:15 p.m.
Institute Session: In the MIDDLE of Difficulty Lies Opportunity
4:15 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
4:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Faculty-led Reflection Groups
5:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Institute Reception
7:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Dinner (required, no-host) with Institute Participants

Fri, Jan 19

7:45 a.m. – 8:30 a.m.
Institute Breakfast
8:30 a.m. – 8:45 a.m.
Introduction of Day 2
8:45 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Institute Session: Cultivating the VPSA-AVP Relationship for Organizational Success
10:00 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
10:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.
Concurrent Session A: Your Dream Team: Target Strategies for Building a Leadership Team
10:30 a.m. – 11:45 a.m.
Concurrent Session B: Partnering Outside Student Affairs for Student Success
11:45 a.m. – 1:45 p.m.
Institute Luncheon with Speaker
Kevin Kruger, President, NASPA
1:45 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Institute Session: Being a Socially Just Leader in Today’s Higher Education Environment
3:30 p.m. – 3:45 p.m.
3:45 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.
Faculty-led Reflection Groups
4:45 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
One-on-one Consultations with Institute Faculty (optional)

Sat, Jan 20

7:30 a.m. – 8:15 a.m.
Institute Breakfast
8:15 a.m. – 9:15 a.m.
Concurrent Session A: The Sponsor Effect: Pushing, Pulling, and Promoting You
8:15 a.m. – 9:15 a.m.
Concurrent Session B: The Struggle is Real: Effective supervision Strategies to Manage the Superstar, Middle Performer, and Difficult Student Affairs Professional
9:15 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m.
Institute Session: Got Change? Frameworks and Strategies for Effective Change Leadership
10:45 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Faculty-led Reflection Groups
11:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Institute Closing Session

Pre-Conference Programs & Events

Two pre-institute sessions will be offered from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. on Thursday, January 18 prior to the start of the "official" institute at 1:00 p.m. that day.  While new AVPs (those who have not yet completed one full year in the position) may be interested in the "Optimizing Student Affairs Using Strategic Thinking and Data", they are strongly encouraged to choose to participate in the "Pre-Institute Session for New AVPs: Navigating Your First Year (and Beyond) as an AVP" offering.

Pre-Institute Session for New AVPs: Navigating Your First Year (and Beyond) as an AVP

Thursday, January 18th • 09.00 AM – 12.00 PM

Are you an AVP or “number two” who is in the first year of your position?

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If so, this half-day pre-institute session is designed specifically with you in mind! The three-hour workshop will focus on supporting your successful transition into the complex and challenging role of campus AVP. The highly-interactive sessions will include the following topics:

  • New expectations in the AVP role
  • Transition advice
  • Managing in your new role
  • Creating an action plan for success

Optimizing Student Affairs Using Strategic Thinking and Data

Thursday, January 18th • 09.00 AM – 12.00 PM

According to Bresciani (2012), “In the current economic environment and as perhaps never before in recent history, strategic student affairs professionals need to evaluate—and just as important, need to effectively articulate—the contributions of the profession and those in it.”

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Assessment of student learning at the program level is becoming commonplace, but where does it fit into your university’s metrics and how it is evaluated by its governance system?  AVPs must be adept at strategically selecting and integrating data that will be useful to share with to demonstrate the impact of student affairs programs and services and provide evidence of contributions toward institutional goals and priorities.  This pre-institute offering will focus on the effective utilization and integration of commonly held student affairs data, selecting the right data to demonstrate impact, and the ethical use of data, and will include some exercises in strategic thinking.


This professional development program is designed for AVPs and other "number twos" who report to the most senior student affairs officer on campus and have substantial responsibility for divisional functions.  The Institute is appropriate for both new and seasoned AVPs and institute first-timers and returners alike.

Registration rates are based on your NASPA membership. If you are not a member, please vist the NASPA Membership page for more information.

Register Online

Registration Fees

Early Bird
before 12/08/2017
before 12/29/2017
before 01/12/2018
NASPA Member


Early Bird
before 12/08/2017
before 12/29/2017
before 01/12/2018
NASPA Member


Tonya Murphy
Member Services Coordinator
Email: events@naspa.org
Phone: (202) 265-7500 ext. 1183

James Stascavage
Senior Director of Leadership and Senior Student Affairs Officers Initiatives
Email: jstascavage@naspa.org
Phone: (202) 719-1172


View Registration Policies

Cancellation:  The cancellation deadline to receive a refund is December 7, 2017, less a $50.00 administrative fee.  No refunds will be given after the deadline for any reason.  All requests for cancellation and refunds must be in writing and sent to refund@naspa.org. This program may be cancelled or postponed due to unforeseen circumstances. In this case, fees will be refunded; however, NASPA will not be responsible for additional costs, charges, or expenses, including cancellation/change charges assessed by airlines, hotels, and/or travel agencies. NASPA is not responsible for weather or travel related problems and will not reimburse registration fees for these issues.


Group Registration Discount: NASPA offers a discount for members registering in groups of two or more individuals from a single institution. To apply for this discount send a request in writing to events@naspa.org prior to applying payment to registration orders. Please include all registrants’ full names, the institution name, and the title of the event. The membership department will follow up for any additional information required and provide a personalized discount code each member of your group can use when processing payment.


Purchase Orders: NASPA does NOT accept purchase orders as a form of payment. For registrants requiring an invoice to have a check payment processed, please use the Bill Me payment method to complete your registration. The resulting invoice can be found and downloaded under the My NASPA section of the website (must be logged-in), by selecting the View Invoices link from the dropdown menu. Alternatively, email a request to Membership to have a PDF of your invoice sent to you. Bill Me registrations are considered complete and will hold your place in an event, however the balance due must be settled prior to attending.


Click here to view NASPA’s complete Payment Policies and Procedures.

Additional Questions? Please contact the NASPA office at 202-265-7500 or via e-mail to events@naspa.org.


Accomplished AVPs and vice presidents for student affairs from a variety of institutional types will serve as the Institute's faculty.

  • Cynthia Hernandez, Institute Director

    Cynthia Hernandez, Institute Director

    Associate Vice President for Student Affairs
    Texas A & M University
  • Dyrell Foster

    Dyrell Foster

    Vice President of Student Services
    Moreno Valley College
  • Jeanna Mastrodicasa

    Jeanna Mastrodicasa

    Associate Vice President for Operations, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
    University of Florida
  • Art Munin

    Art Munin

    Associate Vice Chancellor and Dean of Students
    University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
  • Michele Murray

    Michele Murray

    Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students
    College of the Holy Cross
  • Sarah Neill

    Sarah Neill

    Vice President for Student Affairs/Associate Provost
    Simmons College
  • Gigi Secuban

    Gigi Secuban

    Associate Vice-Chancellor for Student Affairs/Director, Office of Inclusion and Intercultural Relations
    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


  • Kevin Kruger

    Kevin Kruger


    Speaker Bio

  • Nancy Crimmin

    Nancy Crimmin

    Becker College

    Speaker Bio

  • Teri Bump

    Teri Bump

    Vice President of University Relations & Student Affairs
    American Campus Communities

    Speaker Bio

  • Ellen Heffernan

    Ellen Heffernan

    Spelman Johnson

    Speaker Bio


Hotel Republic San Diego

Hotel Republic San Diego
San Diego, California

All conference activities will take place at the Hotel Republic San Diego.

Formally named the Renaissance San Diego, the Hotel Republic San Diego is part of the upgraded Marriott Autograph Collection. 

NASPA has arranged special room rates for conference attendees at the Hotel Republic San Diego starting at $209/night (not including 12.75% state and local taxes). The cut-off date to receive the conference room rate is Wednesday, January 3, 2018. Rooms in the conference block may sell out prior to the cut-off date, so please make your reservation as soon as possible.


Book Your Hotel Now

For hotel questions, please contact:
Greg Morris

Hotel Room Rate/Night
Hotel Republic San Diego
421 West B Street, San Diego, CA 92101
$209 - Single/Double
  • Travel

    San Diego is serviced by San Diego International Airport (SAN). The hotel is approximately 3 miles from the airport.

  • Transportation

    For more information regarding shuttle providers to and from SAN, please visit the Parking & Transportation section of the SAN website.

    If you need a taxi, simply follow the signs leading to the Transportation Plazas. For more information regarding taxi cab service, please visit the Parking & Transportation page of the SAN website. Taxi fare from SAN to the Hotel Republic San Diego is approximately $10 one-way.

    Rental Cars
    For more information on available rental car companies and contact information, please visit the Parking & Transportation page of the SAN website.

  • Weather

    Temperatures in San Diego in January are around 65 degrees F during the day and 49 degrees F in the evening. As the conference gets closer, please visit the Weather Channel for more information.

Additional Info

We hope that you will explore San Diego if you arrive in the city before the program begins. There are plenty of things to do and see if you are a first-time visitor, or even if you have been to San Diego many times. The official tourism website for San Diego is one of many online resources available to visitors.

The dress for NASPA events is business casual.

Past Institute Participant Testimonials

“I attended the NASPA AVP Institute during my first year in the role and found it to be invaluable.  It allowed me to think about the unique role as a leader and as a supporter, and the opportunity to connect with colleagues from across the country was incredibly helpful. I also attended the institute in my second year and found it to be equally valuable as the institute faculty kept the content fresh and relevant.”​
 - Terry Martinez, Associate Vice Provost/Dean of Students, Johns Hopkins University

“The Institute provided an intimate setting to engage with colleagues from throughout the country and with the Institute’s excellent faculty. The sessions were exceptionally well done and provided both real-world context and theoretical frameworks for serving in the AVP role.”
 - Salvador B. Mena, Associate Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs, Rutgers University

“During my time at the AVP Institute, I learned a great deal about the complexity in navigating the political landscape of an institution, the importance of building relationships across campus, and the strategies need to effectively budget and strategically plan in an ever-changing environment. I also appreciated the opportunity to network with and learn from peers across the country who hold similar roles in Student Affairs.”
 - Elizabeth Bapasola, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs, The College of New Jersey

“In my first year as AVP/Dean of Students, the NASPA AVP Institute was invaluable in getting me set up for success.  It challenged me to think strategically about how I was going to begin this new endeavor, and the connections I made at the Institute will continue to be beneficial throughout my career.”
 - Art Munin, Assistant Vice President and Dean of Students, Illinois State University

“The NASPA AVP Institute is an exemplary professional development experience.  The highly curated, well thought-out experience included meaningful opportunities for networking with peers, conversations on critical issues impacting institutions of higher education in general and AVPs in particular, and highly personalized, individual conversations with SSAOs.  I will certainly be participating in this institute with as much frequency as my schedule permits!”
 - David Clark, Assistant Vice President for Campus Life and Assistant Dean in the College, The University of Chicago

“The NASPA AVP Institute was a transformation event for me.  Not only were the faculty insightful, I connected with people in the same role as me and I am still utilizing those relationships to help troubleshoot challenges in my own day-to-day job.  It was also fun to spend time with a group of fellow professionals who understand and appreciate my role.”
 - Eric E. Arneson, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs, Florida International University

"The NASPA AVP Institute provided a great framework for understanding the unique challenges and opportunities for AVPs.  As a new AVP it was great to develop a network of peers in similar positions that understand the role of the AVP."
 - Dannie Moore, Assistant Vice President for Student Inclusiveness, Northern Kentucky University

"The AVP Institute curriculum was truly foundational for me as a new AVP.  Timely topics such as resource management, assessment, and inclusion were presented through an AVP lens and formed how I address these areas in my daily role. Spending this time with other professionals in similar roles created a community for me in the field that I know I can continue to rely upon for feedback and ideas moving forward."
 - Angela Lauer Chong, Assistant Vice President and Dean of Students, Health & Wellness, Division of Student Affairs, The College of New Jersey

"The AVP Institute was an excellent opportunity to build professional connections with colleagues doing similar work around the world.  I appreciated the focus on current hot topics in higher education and the small group discussions about our role in addressing them."
 - Erica O'Neal Howard, Senior Associate Dean of Students, Occidental College

“The NASPA AVP Institute provided the appropriate combination of “looking up” as well as being razor sharp on emerging issues within the profession.  I was able to bring home practical solutions for day-to-day challenges.  I was also challenged to look at myself holistically.  The time was both refreshing and inspiring.”
 - Laurie Betting, Associate Vice President for Health and Wellness, University of North Dakota

“I attended the 2015 NASPA AVP Institute feeling isolated in my new role. When I left, I had discovered a network of colleagues who were experiencing or had solved every one of the challenges that I was facing on a daily basis, and the information that was shared has become the cornerstone of my professional practice and challenges me to be better each day. Now when challenges occur, I have the people and information behind me to be more confident in my decisions and actions. The NASPA AVP Institute was a career enhancing experience like few others I have encountered.”
 - Kyle Baillie, Director, Student Life & Development, University of the Fraser Valley

"The NASPA AVP Institute provided reflection time that all leaders need, the information to think differently and creatively about old problems, and the connections with other AVPs that have proven useful ever since New Orleans.  I would recommend without hesitation attending this Institute if you can."
 - Paul J. McLoughlin II, Dean of Students, Lafayette College

"The institute not only gave me personal information to help me grow in this position (as I was less than a year in at the time) but gave me the ability to look from 30,000 feet to see what the needs might be within my area of responsibility."
 - Kim Turner, Assistant Vice President for Student Support & Business Operations, Northern Kentucky University

"Participating in the AVP Institute provided an infusion of renewed enthusiasm and passion for my role as a campus leader.  Actively participating in the smaller institute setting allowed for group dialogue and the rare opportunity to share strengths and challenges of managing up and down in the unique role one plays as an AVP."
 - Renie Moss, Assistant Dean for Campus Life, Samford University

"If you have a desire to learn how to become the most effective “number two” or the next “number one,” then this institute is the place to be.  Since leaving the institute my motivation to learn more has elevated, and my commitment to be more effective has been sustained."
 - Mark Gumble, Assistant Vice President, Student Development & Enrollment Services, University of Central Florida

"The AVP Institute provided me with a network of peers I can call upon as I respond to multitude of issues that come my way. This network, when combined with the opportunity to hear from other AVPs and how they manage their role on campus, was important for me in my own skill development as well as my confidence in knowing I can be successful in this role."
 - Bruce Skinner, Assistant Vice President for Student Success, Southeast Missouri State University

"One thing I really enjoyed about the Institute was how it was as relevant to new “number twos” as it was to older, more experienced ones. The ability to develop a network of colleagues from across the country was invaluable and useful to me and I am sure to others."
 - Michael Ginsburg, Associate Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, University of Illinois at Chicago

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