2018 Conference

Lightning talks. They’re talks. Made of lightning.

Participants in the HighEdWeb 2017 lightning talks

At the HighEdWeb conference last year in Hartford, we debuted a presentation format that I’ll admit I’d been wanting to try for a very long time: lightning talks. 10-minute blasts of pure awesome, positively sizzling with wisdom. I’m not exaggerating when I say that our inaugural lightning talk presenters — Lougan Bishop, Lacy Paschal, JP Rains, Jason Proctor, and Jill Weaver— absolutely knocked it out of the park.

So I won’t be giving anything away to say that the lightning talks are back for 2018! For me, the lightning talks embody what is best about the HighEdWeb ethos. The lightning talk sessions are presented right after lunch in a general session, for all the attendees to experience together. Developers hear from social media managers. Marketers hear from network managers. And we all learn from each other. It’s fast-paced, it’s fun and it’s right after dessert. Not too bad.

This year’s speakers and sessions carry on in last year’s tradition. Content strategist Tim Senft kicks off with an inspiring talk on how to innovate in an environment that might not be the most innovation friendly. Security expert Jess Brock describes the importance of cultivating what she calls a “security mindset.” Writer Donna Talarico reminds us that it is OK to daydream and play at work, and that it’s actually necessary for building our creative energy. Jeff Stevens will present a new model for thinking about your content strategist, as not so much a lord and master but as a boon companion and content sidekick. And finally JP Rains is back, with a lightning talk version of his incredibly well-received session on using student journey mapping to improve the experience on our websites.

Lightning talks take the best of HighEdWeb and concentrate it down to its most zappable form; they’ll leave you thunderstuck. So be sure to register today and save your seat to see the energy up close:  

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By Liz Gross

Liz Gross is the Director of Campus Sonar. Her professional super powers include designing and analyzing market research, applying social media strategy to multiple areas of the business, explaining difficult concepts in simple language, and using social listening to develop consumer insights and assist with reputation management. She received her Ph.D. in Leadership for the Advancement of Learning and Service in Higher Education at Cardinal Stritch University.