Lynn Burbank recently retired from her position as director of the Continuing Education Department at the University of Minnesota Duluth. She led its College in the Schools program through initial NACEP accreditation in 2005 and re-accreditation in 2012. Lynn is a past president of the NACEP Board of Directors and has served as a peer reviewer since 2006.
Lynn has served as a volunteer since 2002 in many different capacities through the years including being on the Board of Directors, the Accreditation Commission, peer reviewer and much more. Currently, she volunteers as an accreditation coach and webinar/conference presenter.
What is your best NACEP memory and why?
My favorite NACEP memory happened during the conference in Duluth in 2002. The location had been chosen partly through persuasion that early October was a beautiful time of year on the North Shore of Lake Superior, with warm temperatures and the oak, maple and birch trees in full fall color.
Well..., it snowed. But, attendees were treated to toasting marshmallows at a nighttime bonfire on the beach while the snow gently fell and hissed in the flames, and the waves boomed against the rocks. OK, so I wasn’t there, but so many people who were there have told me about this experience, that now it’s one of my favorite NACEP stories, too.
My best most recent memory is of arriving in Louisville last October, and being told that over 800 people had registered for the conference. That is astounding growth in the last 15 years: I think the attendance at that conference in Duluth was about 35 people.
Do you have any advice for first time NACEP volunteers?
My advice for anyone who would like to volunteer is to step forward and let people know you are interested--they will be glad to hear from you. Don't sit back and wait to be noticed, and don't self-select out of opportunities.
How did you get started volunteering for NACEP?
When the NACEP organization was very small, I was asked to run for a position on the NACEP Board, to fill in for someone who had to drop out at the last minute. Board service was a great learning experience--not only for my professional development, but also for greater understanding about the standards and best practices in current enrollment.
What have you learned about NACEP and concurrent programs?
The field of concurrent enrollment is dynamic, innovative, and increasingly complex--and so is NACEP. The regular reviewing of the standards for currency, relevancy and accuracy is an example of evolving to fit the changing needs of concurrent enrollment stakeholders while at the same time maintaining the program integrity essential for sustainability and student success.
We owe a huge debt of gratitude to that first small group of education professionals who in the mid '90's had the vision to start discussing--and then creating--an organization targeted toward ensuring high quality rigor and professional development for the concurrent enrollment field. Equally importantly, NACEP would not be the national voice of concurrent enrollment today if not for the efforts of our gifted professional staff members who move it forward and upward.
What do you do when you are not volunteering?
One of the great things about retirement (Do I sound like an AARP ad? Yikes!) is that you can chose what you want to do, and the schedule for doing it. My husband and I live in northern Minnesota, where you really need either to love doing snow-related activities, or desperately dream about moving elsewhere. We love to cross-country ski--fortunately, the terrain is relatively flat, so I don't fall down as often as I would alpine skiing. The snow is also nice because it covers all the undone outside projects, so we can relax for a few months. To top it off, my husband loves to cook and I love to eat, so retirement has turned out to be even better than I had hoped.