Newbie to Wonk, This Year’s Washington Policy Seminar was the Perfect Place for the Policy Curious to Gather, Learn, and Share
April 24, 2023
By: Amy Williams NACEP Executive Director
We had another outstanding NACEP Washington Policy Seminar this year in DC. The weather was fine and the cherry blossoms did not disappoint! Our goal was to provide attendees with informative, timely, and engaging content on the latest policy developments affecting dual and concurrent enrollment programs, and I believe we accomplished that and more.
Throughout the two-day event, we heard from a diverse range of speakers who provided valuable insights on federal and state policy issues, as well as best practices for implementing policy to improve equity and access in dual and concurrent enrollment programs. We also had the opportunity to engage in productive discussions with policymakers and other education professionals, sharing our perspectives and experiences and learning from each other.
One highlight of the seminar was the session by US Department of Education’s Luke Rhine who serves as Deputy Assistant Secretary at OCTAE. Mr. Rhine and I had the opportunity to work together years ago, when we both had similar roles in our respective states (Delaware and Montana). I was not surprised to hear that he was tapped by the US Department of Education during the Biden administration. His remarks made it clear that supporting dual and concurrent enrollment is a priority at USED. It was also refreshing to hear about the increased support for dual and concurrent enrollment and how this manifests in several objectives they are working on to increase college and career connections in high schools. To my knowledge, this was the first time NACEP hosted a representative from the Department for this Policy Seminar, I suspect it will not be the last.
Of course we had many other outstanding sessions including three from NACEP Board and Commission members on everything from challenges and opportunities with national datasets, to understanding and leveraging connections between state, federal and local policy, and ways to better serve our members advocacy needs.
We had a great mix of first time and repeat attendees from 17 states. Josh Floyd, from Wytheville Community College in Virginia has attended the past two years and shared about what he values about this event: “Along with the annual NACEP Conference, the Washington Policy Seminar is one that I greatly anticipate each academic year. I learn valuable information from top-notch presenters, plus I am able to network with fellow NACEP colleagues!”
Thank you to all our attendees, speakers, and discussion facilitators for making this a truly unique and impactful event. We look forward to planning next year’s event and hope that you will make time to join us next year in DC!