Broadening the Scope of Vocational Exploration

2019 NetVUE Conference 3/21/2019 3/21/2019 3/21/20193/23/20193/23/20193/23/2019 Galt House Hotel Louisville, KY

About the Conference

The Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) is pleased to invite teams of campus leaders to the fifth national conference of the Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE), which will be held March 21−23, 2019, at the Galt House Hotel in Louisville, Kentucky. NetVUE is a nationwide campus-supported network administered by CIC that fosters the intellectual and theological exploration of vocation among college and university students.

Under the theme “Broadening the Scope of Vocational Exploration,” the 2019 NetVUE Conference will focus on the growing importance of vocation and calling across a wide range of concerns in undergraduate education. Greater attention is being paid to vocational exploration in a variety of contexts, including theological reflection across faith traditions, intellectual inquiry into issues of morality and ethics, and initiatives to develop students as future professional and civic leaders.

An array of distinguished speakers will address such topics as vocation in a world of accelerating change, the increasingly diverse religious and ethical worldviews of undergraduate students, and moral leadership as a calling. Concurrent sessions will highlight successful campus programs and offer research-based analyses of vocational exploration in theory and practice. The entire conference is designed to provide participants with a wide range of resources to sustain and broaden the work of vocational exploration—in the classroom, the advising process, career development, campus ministry, community engagement, and other campus venues. Participants will also have opportunities to network with colleagues in similar roles at other institutions.

Each NetVUE member college and university is invited to designate a three- to five-person campus team, led by the president, chief academic officer, or another officer at the vice-presidential level. The team should include others who play key roles in helping undergraduates consider their vocations in relation to personal development, educational plans, and postgraduate choices. Campus representatives may include faculty members, student life staff, chaplains, vocation program directors, and career services advisors.

Thanks to member dues and generous support from Lilly Endowment Inc., the registration fee of $800, which includes the costs of accommodations, all conference meals, and program materials, will be waived for three team members of NetVUE institutions. Two additional team members—up to five total—may register at the institution’s expense. Participating institutions will be responsible for covering travel expenses for all team members.

NOTE: Registration for the 2019 NetVUE Conference is closed.

About NetVUE

Return to NetVUE Site

The Network for Vocation in Undergraduate Education (NetVUE) is a nationwide association of colleges and universities administered by the Council of Independent Colleges (CIC) that supports students in the work of vocational exploration and discernment. Through national conferences and regional gatherings, faculty seminars and scholarly resources, campus visit and consulting programs, and a wide range of grant initiatives, NetVUE encourages member institutions to develop and extend vocation-related conversations and programming on their campuses.

NetVUE is supported by member dues and by the generosity of Lilly Endowment Inc., which has brought conversations about vocation and calling to national prominence through a series of major grant initiatives over the past two decades. Among these were its Programs for the Theological Exploration of Vocation (PTEV), which supported major initiatives on 88 college and university campuses between 1999 and 2009. As Lilly’s direct support of PTEV concluded, CIC, with support from Lilly, launched NetVUE in 2009. Since that time, more than 225 colleges and universities have joined the CIC-sponsored network.

Biennial national conferences of NetVUE have been held since 2011, with the 2017 NetVUE Conference bringing together more than 600 campus leaders from 170 colleges and universities to explore vocational frameworks and practices. NetVUE member institutions, most of which are rooted in the liberal arts, represent a wide range of religiously-affiliated institutions as well as many without specific religious ties. They are united by their commitment to strengthen and deepen vocational exploration and discernment on their campuses, both in the classroom and in other areas of undergraduate student life.

NetVUE Purposes

NetVUE has five main purposes:

  1. Deepen the understanding of the intellectual and theological dimensions of vocational exploration;
  2. Examine the role of vocational exploration in a variety of institutional contexts;
  3. Share knowledge, best practices, and reflection on experiences across participating campuses;
  4. Facilitate the incorporation of additional colleges and universities into this enterprise; and
  5. Sustain an extended program in the intellectual and theological exploration of vocation.

NetVUE Activities

In addition to the large national conference held every other year, NetVUE offers a number of programs and services to member institutions:
  • Regional gatherings and multi-campus collaborations on specific topics conducted in non-conference years (six gatherings were held during 2017–2018);
  • Modest grants to support the further development of existing vocational exploration programs and the professional development of faculty and staff members;
  • An annual faculty development seminar, Teaching Vocational Exploration, for which faculty members may be nominated;
  • Consulting and campus visit services to strengthen or develop programs at member institutions;
  • Development of scholarly resources for vocational exploration, including At This Time and In This Place: Vocation and Higher Education (2016), Vocation across the Academy: A New Vocabulary for Higher Education (2017), and Hearing Vocation Differently: Meaning, Purpose, and Identity in the Multi-Faith Academy (forthcoming), all published by Oxford University Press;
  • An online community for the exchange of resources and ideas among member institutions; and
  • A small NetVUE staff, housed at Hope College, to support the network.
NetVUE is administered by CIC with generous support from Lilly Endowment Inc. and member dues. An Advisory Council composed of representatives from member institutions guides CIC in the administration of NetVUE. View additional information about NetVUE, including resources from prior conferences.

Not Yet a Member of NetVUE?

CIC welcomes the participation of additional independent colleges and universities in NetVUE. Institutions that join NetVUE gain access to the array of resources, programs, and services intended to support vocational exploration and discernment among undergraduate students. View additional information about NetVUE membership, including an application to join. Please complete the membership application prior to submitting conference registration. For questions about NetVUE, please contact David S. Cunningham, director of NetVUE, at or (616) 395-6750.

Featured Speakers



  • Rebecca S. Chopp
    Rebecca S. Chopp
    University of Denver
  • Katherine (Trina) Janiec Jones
    Katherine (Trina) Janiec Jones
    Wofford College
  • Rachel S. Mikva
    Rachel S. Mikva
    Chicago Theological Seminary
  • Anantanand Rambachan
    Anantanand Rambachan
    St. Olaf College
  • Zeenat Rahman
    Zeenat Rahman
    Aspen Institute
  • Robert M. Franklin, Jr.
    Robert M. Franklin, Jr.
    Emory University




Concurrent SessionsConcurrent Sessions8Concurrent Session<h3>Citizenship and Social Justice in Vocational Reflection</h3> Many college and university mission statements affirm the goal of educating students to contribute to a democratic society and to help make the world a better place. How might vocational reflection and discernment programs help to achieve these goals? In this session, presenters will describe how they are connecting the language of citizenship and social justice to vocation in order to help students think comprehensively about the world in which they will live. Such an approach can appeal to students with specifically theological interests as well as to those not grounded in particular faith commitments.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Lord Edwin J. (Eddie) Carreon</em></strong>, Associate Director of Residence Life and Adjunct Professor, Arrupe Scholars Program, John Carroll University<br><strong><em>Amy S. Peak</em></strong>, Director of Undergraduate Health Science Programs and Chair, Health Science Department, College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences, Butler University<br><strong><em>Rachel F. Pickett</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Psychology and Director of First-Year Experience Programs, Concordia University Wisconsin<br></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>Integrating Meaning, Calling, and Career</h3>Many of today’s undergraduate students want their college experience to offer not only a path to a fulfilling career but also guidance for finding meaning and purpose in their lives. Too often, these goals are framed as mutually exclusive, when thinking about calling and vocation can help students move beyond this apparent dichotomy. In this session, presenters will describe how the idea of vocation can function as an integrating concept that draws together career readiness, life skills, and deeper questions of meaning and purpose. Examples will be offered from both curricular and co-curricular contexts.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Steven G. Affeldt</em></strong>, Director of the McDevitt Center, Co-Director of the Manresa Program, and Associate Professor of Philosophy, Le Moyne College<br><strong><em>Ryan Colvin</em></strong>, Director, Center for Career Education, Millsaps College<br><strong><em>TaRita Johnson</em></strong>, Career Center Director, Calvin College<br><div><strong><em>Ronald J. (RJ) Rapoza</em></strong>, Associate Director of Career Advising and Development and Co-Director of the Manresa Program, Le Moyne College</div></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>Internships for Vocational Discernment</h3>Vocational reflection can become more relevant and immediate for students when they are able to “try out” what they have discerned. Internships provide students an important opportunity to discover whether their thoughts and assumptions about a particular form of work match what people in that profession actually do. But internship programs need a great deal of attention and oversight if they are to succeed as genuine forms of vocational exploration and discernment. In this session, presenters will describe features of internship programs that engage students in vocationally meaningful ways. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Samuel J. Dreeben</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Psychology and Coordinator of the Psychology Internship Program, Schreiner University<br><strong><em>Angela A. Upright</em></strong>, Program Coordinator for the Harold C. Smith Program in Christian Studies, Ursinus College<br><div><strong><em>Sara C. Wrenn</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Psychology, Bennett College</div></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>The Role of Graduates in Vocational Discernment</h3>All colleges and universities have a large pool of their own graduates who can engage with students in myriad ways to help them shape the trajectory of their educational experiences. Students also need help in articulating the value of their higher education experiences, in both the curricular and co-curricular environments. In this presentation, leaders will provide a brief overview of their alumni-related vocation initiatives. They will share strategies gleaned from practices of engaging alumni at varying levels of scale, from limited engagement to campus-wide initiatives, but always with an eye toward assessment and sustainability.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Joshua Ambrose</em></strong>, Associate Dean of Campus and Community Engagement, McDaniel College<br><strong><em>Twyla Hough</em></strong>, Director of Career Services and Co-Director for the Center for Experiential Learning and Career Success, Trinity University (TX)<br><div><strong><em>Julia Jasken</em></strong>, Provost and Executive Vice President, McDaniel College</div></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>Student Athletes at Risk? Why Vocation Matters</h3>Colleges and universities are discovering that vocational discernment programs face unique challenges when working with student athletes, whose academic and career goals often run a distant second to their athletic identities. When this identity is challenged (for example, because of academic ineligibility, athletic performance, or major injury), institutions often struggle to retain these students, particularly if they are male. In this session, presenters will describe the steps that they have taken, through their advising services and at-risk remediation programs, to tailor vocational discernment programs to the needs of student athletes. Particular attention will be given to the need to intervene early and deliberately to help students nurture identities that transcend their athletic involvement.<br><blockquote><strong><em>John Kippes</em></strong>, Director of Student Life, Dakota Wesleyan University<br><strong><em>William E. Mullins</em></strong>, University Chaplain and Assistant Professor of Religion and Christian Education, Muskingum University<br><strong><em>Joseph M. Roidt</em></strong>, Provost, Dakota Wesleyan University<br><div><strong><em>Mark A. Stambush</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Psychology and Chair, Psychology Department, Muskingum University</div></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>Student Motivation and Engagement in Vocational Programming</h3>How can we best encourage and motivate students to become more deeply engaged in the work of vocational exploration in the classroom? In this session, a panel of three faculty members—all of whom participated in the 2018 NetVUE faculty seminar on Teaching Vocational Exploration—will discuss student engagement, expectations, and motivations in the vocational exploration courses that they have taught. Session participants will be invited to offer insights from their own classroom experiences through guided discussion questions, brainstorming, and sharing ideas, obstacles, and opportunities. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Melody M. Pannell</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Social Work, Eastern Mennonite University<br><strong><em>C. Nani Skaggs</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Psychology, Northwest Christian University<br><div><strong><em>Lindsey M. Ward</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Worldview Studies and Director of the First-Year Experience and Young Adult Ministry Scholars, University of Dubuque</div></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>Training the Trainers: Equipping Faculty Mentors</h3>NetVUE campus leaders are often responsible for equipping faculty members to incorporate vocational discernment into their interactions with student advisees. In this session, presenters will describe their own institutions’ approaches to this challenge, with a particular focus on how their efforts have sought to create a culture of vocational discernment on campus. The session will explore the implementation of strategic goals and plans that can sustain this work, as well as assessment methods that can be used to improve upon these efforts over time. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Jason W. Clayton</em></strong>, Dean of Career and Life Calling, Cornerstone University<br><strong><em>Brian K. Foreman</em></strong>, Executive Director, Center for Church and Community, Campbell University<br><div><strong><em>Amy J. Santas</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Biology and Chair, Biology Department, Muskingum University</div></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>Vocationally-Based First-Year Experience Programs</h3>Many colleges and universities have recognized the value of integrating vocation into their first-year experience (FYE) programs. Of course, the content and structure of FYE-related vocation initiatives will vary greatly, depending on institutional context. In this session, two institutions will draw on the lessons they have learned in crafting, implementing, and assessing vocation-based first-year experience programs. Particular attention will be given to the ways that FYE programs can support and advance other key institutional learning goals and priorities.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Maria Ollier Burkett</em></strong>, Assistant Director, University Honors Program, University of Dayton<br><strong><em>Amy Gray</em></strong>, Vice President for Student Success, Aurora University<br><strong><em>Matthew Kneller</em></strong>, Director of General Education and Associate Professor of Communication, Aurora University<br><strong><em>Stephen W. Wilhoit</em></strong>, Professor of English, Associate Director of the Ryan C. Harris Learning Teaching Center, and Director of Faculty Career Enhancement, University of Dayton</blockquote>
Breakfast Roundtable DiscussionsBreakfast Roundtable Discussions14​Breakfast is provided for all registered Conference participants. <br>Several tables are designated for participants who wish to join colleagues to discuss specific topics. Two additional discussions will be held in separate rooms to accommodate larger numbers of participants.<br> <div> <br> </div><h3>A Dialogue on the First-Year Experience</h3>How have NetVUE institutions integrated vocation into the first-year experience? What are the advantages and challenges of different approaches (for example, a content-based first-year experience vs. an extended orientation to college)? At this roundtable, a NetVUE leader who was deeply involved in the development of a vocationally-based first-year experience will describe that process and briefly outline the course’s pedagogical approach. Participants will be invited to compare their own institutions’ first-year programs (in whatever state of development), goals for future efforts, current experiences, or outcomes of programs already implemented.  <br> <blockquote> <strong><em>Julie E. Yonker</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Psychology, Calvin College<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Organizing a Conference on Vocation and Students of Color</h3>Participants are invited to discuss organizing a conference focused on improving programs, methods, and strategies for vocational exploration among undergraduate students of color. Such a conference would be designed to produce an edited volume, tentatively titled <cite>Deep Beckoning: Unique Opportunities and Challenges of Vocational Exploration with Undergraduate Students of Color</cite>, which could serve as a rich resource for those who wish to explore best practices in this work. <br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Loye Sekihata Ashton</em></strong>, Director, Center for International Studies and Global Change, Associate Professor of Religious Studies, and Chair, Liberal Studies Department, Tougaloo College<br><strong><em>Melody M. Pannell</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Social Work, Eastern Mennonite University<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Social Media and Vocational Exploration </h3>How can member institutions make the best use of social media to promote and encourage the work of vocational exploration at their institutions? What has worked well (and not so well) as NetVUE leaders step into the next generation of cross-campus communication? In this roundtable session, participants are invited to share knowledge, best practices, and potential future strategies for negotiating the ever-changing landscape of social media on college campuses. <br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>C. Hannah Schell</em></strong>, NetVUE Online Community Coordinator, CIC<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Zigzag Vocational Trajectories</h3>How might we prepare students to think about their vocational journeys across their lifespans? How can we help them understand that challenges and pitfalls need not deter them from being persistent in reaching their goals? This roundtable discussion will consider projects that help students see that career journeys are not typically linear, but are more typically “zigzag” paths that are required to work around barriers along the way. The session will include a description of “visual career paths,” originally developed for online content through a campus working group, designed to help students think about their callings. <br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Natalie Luna</em></strong>, Career Counselor and Employer Services Coordinator, California Lutheran University <br> </blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Best Practices for NetVUE Campus Contacts</h3>This roundtable session provides gathering time for those who currently serve as NetVUE Campus Contacts, as well as those who might be willing to take on that role in the future. NetVUE staff will offer advice on how to make the most of this important role as point of contact for member campuses. Participants will be encouraged to describe best practices and to offer feedback on how the NetVUE staff might improve communication with, and provide better support for, those who serve as Campus Contacts. <br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>David S. Cunningham</em></strong>, Director of NetVUE, CIC<br><strong><em>Lynne M. Spoelhof</em></strong>, NetVUE Program Coordinator, CIC<br></blockquote> <br> <h3>Developing an Application for a NetVUE Grant<br></h3>This session will begin with a brief presentation on the array of NetVUE grants that will be offered in the coming year. Participants can check on their institution’s eligibility for various programs (whether in this year or a future year). They also can ask questions about developing conversations on campus in preparation for applying for a grant, as well as application procedures and best practices for successful grant administration. This session also will include a brief preview of what programs will be introduced as the result of a new award to CIC from Lilly Endowment Inc. <br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Harold V. Hartley III</em></strong>, Senior Vice President, CIC<br><strong><em>Lynn Hunnicutt</em></strong>, Assistant Director of NetVUE, CIC</blockquote>
Small-Group Discussions by Campus RoleSmall-Group Discussions by Campus Role3<p>Participants with prior NetVUE Conference experience will meet in small groups of campus leaders who serve in similar roles. The groups will discuss the effectiveness of different approaches to renewing programs for vocational exploration and discernment based on institutional missions and participant experiences. Each group also will consider ways to sustain vocational reflection efforts on participants’ campuses.<br><br><em>Note: Conference participants are assigned to specific groups. Please consult conference materials for details.</em><br></p>
Breakfast Roundtable DiscussionsBreakfast Roundtable Discussions5Breakfast is provided for all registered Conference participants. Several tables are designated for participants who wish to join colleagues to discuss specific topics. Two additional discussions will be held in separate rooms to accommodate larger numbers of participants.<br><br> <h3>Bridging Undergraduate Research and Career Readiness through a Student Conference</h3>How can we help students to see the connections between their academic studies and their “hands on” work in relation to current topics and problems? How might we facilitate greater interdisciplinary exchange among undergraduates? One possibility is through the development of a student conference, designed to promote the exchange of research and to make findings accessible to a broader audience. At this roundtable, a NetVUE leader with experience in organizing such events will describe general approaches and best practices and solicit the experiences of other participants who have undertaken similar projects (or hope to do so). <br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Thais P. Carter</em></strong>, Director, Institute for Leadership and Services, Valparaiso University<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>A Calling to Remember: Studying History as a Vocation</h3>Can teachers of history help students to think of this field as a calling to be keepers of memory? History can focus on storytelling and remembering, thereby freeing teachers to pursue their own strengths and thus to bring their subject to life. This roundtable is designed for those who teach within the academic discipline of history, or who teach the history of their own discipline or applied field. The goal is to develop a conversation about how this work can both build critical thinking skills and include the formation of virtue.<br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Martin H. Dotterweich</em></strong>, Director of Faith and Learning and Chair, History and Political Science Department, King University (TN)<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Social Media and Vocational Exploration </h3>How can member institutions make the best use of social media to promote and encourage the work of vocational exploration at their institutions? What has worked well (and not so well) as NetVUE leaders step into the next generation of cross-campus communication? In this roundtable session, participants are invited to share knowledge, best practices, and potential future strategies for negotiating the ever-changing landscape of social media on college campuses. <br> <em>(Note: This discussion will be offered on both Friday and Saturday mornings.)</em><br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>C. Hannah Schell</em></strong>, NetVUE Online Community Coordinator, CIC<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Vocation in Pluralistic Institutions</h3>In pluralistic institutions, the work of helping students to address questions of meaning and purpose can present both opportunities and challenges. This work can sometimes seem to present a false choice between meaningfulness and inclusion—the community can opt for a homogeneity that provides a shared framework for questions of meaning and value, or it can choose inclusivity but assume that this requires setting aside the “big questions” of life. This roundtable is designed to facilitate a conversation among those who work at pluralistic institutions and who seek to facilitate vocational exploration across important and enduring lines of difference. <br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Matthew Croasmun</em></strong>, Associate Research Scholar, Center for Faith and Culture, and Lecturer in Divinity and Humanities, Yale University<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Best Practices for NetVUE Campus Contacts</h3>This roundtable session provides gathering time for those currently serving as NetVUE Campus Contacts, as well as those who might be willing to take on that role in the future. NetVUE staff will offer advice on how to make the most of this important role as point of contact for member campuses. Participants will be encouraged to describe best practices and to offer feedback on how the NetVUE staff might improve communication with, and provide better support for, those who serve as Campus Contacts. <br> <em>(Note: This session will be offered on both Friday and Saturday mornings.)</em><br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>David S. Cunningham</em></strong>, Director of NetVUE, CIC<br><strong><em>Lynne M. Spoelhof</em></strong>, NetVUE Program Coordinator, CIC<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Developing an Application for a NetVUE Grant</h3>This session will begin with a brief presentation on the array of NetVUE grants that will be offered in the coming year. Participants can check on their institution’s eligibility for various programs (whether in this year or a future year). They also can ask questions about developing conversations on campus in preparation for applying for a grant, as well as application procedures and best practices for successful grant administration. This session also will include a brief preview of what programs will be introduced as the result of a new award to CIC from the Lilly Endowment. <br> <em>(Note: This session will be offered on both Friday and Saturday mornings.)</em><br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Harold V. Hartley III</em></strong>, Senior Vice President, CIC <br> <strong> <em>Lynn Hunnicutt</em></strong>, Assistant Director of NetVUE, CIC</blockquote>
Presidents ForumPresidents Forum8<em>(Open only to currently-serving college and university presidents)</em><br><br>Presidents are invited to participate in a candid conversation regarding changing institutional contexts and approaches to broaden and sustain vocational exploration initiatives while attending to institutional mission and resources. Two NetVUE member presidents will facilitate the discussion.<br><blockquote>Conveners:<br><strong><em>J. Michael Pressimone</em></strong>, President, Fontbonne University<br><strong><em>Susan Traverso</em></strong>, President, Thiel College</blockquote>
Orientation Session for Those New to NetVUEOrientation Session for Those New to NetVUE3First-time participants in the NetVUE Conference are invited to gather for an orientation to NetVUE, its history, understandings of vocation, and programs and services. This session will provide guidance about how to benefit from the NetVUE Conference and will allow newcomers to get to know each other. <br><blockquote>Conveners:<br><strong><em>David S. Cunningham</em></strong>, Director of NetVUE, CIC<br><strong><em>Richard Ekman</em></strong>, President, CIC</blockquote>
BreakfastBreakfast5<p>​Breakfast is provided for all registered Conference participants. Several tables are designated for participants who wish to join colleagues to discuss specific topics. Two additional discussions will be held in separate rooms to accommodate larger numbers of participants.<br></p>
Breakfast and Hotel CheckoutBreakfast and Hotel Checkout14<p>​Breakfast is provided for all registered Conference participants. <br>Several tables are designated for participants who wish to join colleagues to discuss specific topics. Two additional discussions will be held in separate rooms to accommodate larger numbers of participants.<br></p>
Opportunities for Vocational ReflectionOpportunities for Vocational Reflection21<h3>​Quiet Space for Contemplation and Meditation</h3><h3><br>Prayer Labyrinth<br></h3>
Lunch by Campus RoleLunch by Campus Role9<p>Conference participants are invited to sit at tables designated by campus role.</p>
Workshops on Vocational Resources to Enrich Campus InitiativesWorkshops on Vocational Resources to Enrich Campus Initiatives10Concurrent Session<h3>Assessing Impact: Demonstrating the Value of Vocation Initiatives</h3><div>How can NetVUE leaders demonstrate the impact of vocation-related programming to make a compelling case for ongoing institutional support of their most successful initiatives? This session will outline a broad approach to program evaluation that goes beyond participant satisfaction ratings or other short-term indicators of success. The presentation will describe broad principles and provide practical tips that can be used to structure data collection and analysis. In order to be productive, this work should emphasize how well programs achieve their stated goals and how they serve an institution’s strategic priorities.<br></div><blockquote><div> <strong><em>Lisa Jasinski</em></strong>, Special Assistant to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, Trinity University (TX)<br>Chair: <strong> <em>Christon G. Arthur</em></strong>, Provost, Andrews University (MI)<br></div></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>​Getting the Word Out: Telling the Story of Successful Programs </h3>Many NetVUE institutions are operating highly successful vocational exploration programs from which their undergraduate students are benefitting enormously. But it can be difficult at times to make these successes known and recognized, even among the college’s faculty and staff members—let alone to its wider constituencies (including alumni, current and prospective parents, and trustees). This panel of journalists and scholars with extensive experience in social media, blogging, and writing for a wider audience, will offer insights and suggestions for telling these important success stories more compellingly.<br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Kalpana Jain</em></strong>, Senior Religion and Ethics Editor, The Conversation US<br><strong><em>Caryn D. Riswold</em></strong>, Mike and Marge McCoy Family Distinguished Chair in Lutheran Heritage and Mission and Professor of Religion, Wartburg College<br><strong><em>C. Hannah Schell</em></strong>, NetVUE Online Community Coordinator, CIC<br>Chair: <strong> <em>Brian D. Ammons</em></strong>, Director of Spiritual Life and Chaplain, Warren Wilson College<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Interfaith Vocational Reflection at Distinctively Religious Campuses</h3>At many institutions with distinctive religious missions and constituencies, the student body is becoming increasingly diverse with respect to faith commitment or lifestance. What challenges do such institutions face when carrying out programs in vocational exploration and discernment? Do the Christian roots of the concept of vocation allow for, encourage, or even demand a religiously inclusive approach? What role can institutions’ traditional constituencies play in adjusting to this new context? Presenters from three NetVUE institutions will speak to the challenges and opportunities for interfaith vocation programs at these institutions.<br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>John D. Barton</em></strong>, Professor of Religion and Director, Center for Faith and Learning, Pepperdine University<br><strong><em>Jeffrey Carlson</em></strong>, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Professor of Theology, Dominican University (IL)<br><strong><em>Marion H. Larson</em></strong>, Department Co-Chair and Professor of English, Bethel University (MN)<br><strong><em>Sara L. H. Shady</em></strong>, Professor of Philosophy, Bethel University (MN)<br>Chair: <strong> <em>Nicole L. Johnson</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Religious and Interdisciplinary Studies and Coordinator, Peacebuilding and Social Justice Program, University of Mount Union<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Mentoring Students of Color for Deep Purpose</h3>How do students of color experience vocational exploration programs? How are their questions of personal identity and spirituality shaped by the current national landscape of race and religion? Three presenters who have reflected deeply on these questions will offer their perspectives on vocation, spirituality, religion, and purpose in the lives of students of color. They also will describe effective practices deployed to address these topics and offer realistic next steps for evolving campus programs.<br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Younus Y. Mirza</em></strong>, Project Director, Barzinji Project for International Collaboration to Advance Higher Education, Shenandoah University<br><strong><em>Monica M. Smith</em></strong>, Vice President of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Augustana College (IL)<br><strong><em>Gloria Urrabazo</em></strong>, Vice President for Mission and Ministry, Our Lady of the Lake University (TX)<br>Chair: <strong> <em>Caroline J. Simon</em></strong>, Provost and Executive Vice President, Whitworth University<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Virtue, Vice, Vocation: Scholarship on Ethics and Calling</h3>The first volume in the NetVUE Scholarly Resources Project, <em>At This Time and In This Place: Vocation and Higher Education</em> (2016), featured chapters that explored the relationships among virtue, vice, and vocation. In this session, one contributor to the volume and two other experts in this field will discuss the scholarly merit and practical application of the language of virtue and vice as an element of vocational reflection programs.<br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Douglas V. Henry</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Baylor University<br><strong><em>David Matzko McCarthy</em></strong>, Associate Provost and Fr. James M. Forker Professor of Catholic Social Teaching, Mount St. Mary’s University (MD)<br><strong><em>Elizabeth Newman</em></strong>, Eula Mae and John Baugh Professor of Theology and Ethics and Director, Master of Theological Studies Program, Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond<br>Chair: <strong> <em>René E. Johnson</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Religion and Philosophy and Director of Servant Leadership, Finlandia University<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Vocation across the Curriculum: Lessons from the NetVUE Faculty Seminar</h3>What does it mean to “teach” vocation in the college context? What do we know about effective practices for implementing vocational reflection in the classroom? This session, convened by the co-leaders of the NetVUE faculty seminar, Teaching Vocational Exploration, features four presenters from a variety of academic disciplines, who will speak to their experiences of implementing vocational exploration in a curricular setting.<br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Geoffrey W. Bateman</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Peace and Justice Studies and Associate Dean of Student Support and Experiential Learning, Regis University (CO)<br><strong><em>Lindsey Bosko-Dunbar</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Mathematics and Faculty Director of Pathways to Purpose, Spring Hill College<br><strong><em>Esteban Loustaunau</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Spanish and Director of the SOPHIA Program, Assumption College<br><strong><em>Robin Shura</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Kent State University at Stark<br><br> <h4>Conveners:</h4> <strong> <em>Darby K. Ray</em></strong>, Donald W. and Ann M. Harward Professor of Civic Engagement and Professor of Religious Studies, and Director, Harward Center for Community Partnerships, Bates College<br><strong><em>Paul J. Wadell</em></strong>, Professor of Religious Studies, St. Norbert College<br></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Vocation in the Health Professions</h3>By some estimates, nearly half of entering undergraduates plan to pursue careers in the health professions. Of these, a large majority imagine that they will be physicians. Many of these students will discover—sometimes with considerable pain—that medicine is not, in fact, their calling. Other students may avoid considering health careers because of misperceptions about the skills and capacities that these diverse fields require. Three presenters with wide experience addressing these issues, both in theory and practice, will lead a conversation on vocational exploration programs for students considering careers in health professions.<br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Tina S. Holland</em></strong>, President, Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady University<br><strong><em>Margaret E. Mohrmann</em></strong>, Professor Emerita of Pediatrics, Medical Education, and Religious Studies, University of Virginia<br><strong><em>Kurt A. Schackmuth</em></strong>, Vice President for Mission and Interim Associate Provost for Academic Affairs, Lewis University<br>Chair: <strong> <em>Paul J. Maurer</em></strong>, President, Montreat College<br></blockquote>
Business Meeting of NetVUE MembersBusiness Meeting of NetVUE Members11The biennial meeting of NetVUE members will include a review of NetVUE goals; membership; programs, services, and activities; and finances. Members also will consider future plans and directions and have an opportunity to ask questions and offer suggestions regarding NetVUE’s continuing development. Each member institution should be represented by at least one senior member of the campus team.<br><blockquote>Presiding: <strong><em>Richard Ekman</em></strong>, President, CIC<br><br>Reports: <br><strong><em>David S. Cunningham</em></strong>, Director of NetVUE, CIC<br><strong><em>Lynn Hunnicutt</em></strong>, Assistant Director of NetVUE, CIC<br><strong><em>Harold V. Hartley III</em></strong>, Senior Vice President, CIC</blockquote>
Networking ReceptionNetworking Reception12<p>​The reception provides an opportunity for all NetVUE Conference and Exhibit Hall participants to connect informally with colleagues.</p>
Dinner on Your OwnDinner on Your Own13<p>​This evening provides an opportunity for conference participants to join colleagues old and new for dinner. Participants make their own arrangements. Please consult the Guidebook app for restaurant recommendations or inquire at the CIC registration desk.</p>
Opportunities for Vocational ReflectionOpportunities for Vocational Reflection25<h3>​Quiet Space for Contemplation and Meditation</h3><h3><br>Prayer Labyrinth<br></h3>
Concurrent SessionsConcurrent Sessions27Concurrent SessionCultivating Vocation through Literary Studies<br>Vocational reflection and discernment are often shaped by life stories, ethical choices, and diverse worldviews—all of which can be better understood through the study of literature, writing, and literary theory. How can pedagogical commitments and innovations of these disciplines encourage students to respond to their own desires and strengths as well as to the needs of the world? In this session, English department faculty members, all of whom participated in the 2017 NetVUE seminar on Teaching Vocation Exploration, will explore the relationship between the craft of interpretation and the cultivation of vocational reflection. They also will offer pedagogical case studies.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Sheila Bauer-Gatsos</em></strong>, Associate Professor of English and Director of the Core Curriculum, Dominican University (IL)<br><strong><em>Deirdre E. Egan-Ryan</em></strong>, Associate Professor of English and Director of Academic Service Learning, St. Norbert College<br><strong><em>Stephanie L. Johnson</em></strong>, Associate Professor of English and Director of the Honors Program, The College of St. Scholastica<br><strong><em>Giffen Mare Maupin</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of English, Hendrix College<br><div><strong><em>Erin A. VanLaningham</em></strong>, Associate Professor of English and Director of the Honors Program, Loras College</div></blockquote><div><br></div><div><h3>Developing a Vocational Portfolio through Advising</h3>As the range of vocation-related activities expands on a given campus, it can become difficult for students to keep track of how their experiences relate to and interact with one another. In this session, presenters will describe how they use the advising process as an opportunity for students to gather their vocational questions, reflections, and efforts toward discernment and to curate these in an accessible format. What are the best ways for students to continually reflect on and document their vocational journeys? How can institutions support advisors and mentors so that they can better guide students in this work? <br><blockquote><strong><em>Colin A. Anderson</em></strong>, Director of Hiram Connect, George and Arlene Foote Chair in Ethics and Values, and Associate Professor of Philosophy, Hiram College<br><strong><em>Patrick Hayden-Roy</em></strong>, Associate Provost for Integrative and Experiential Learning and Professor of History, Nebraska Wesleyan University</blockquote></div><div><br><h3>Innovative Strategies for Faculty Development </h3>The lasting effects of a student’s college experience depend heavily on the relationship between students and faculty members—whether in the classroom, the laboratory, or in less formal venues. In this session, presenters will describe their efforts to bring more faculty members into the conversation about vocation and calling. Successful initiatives include reading groups, learning communities, and theological conversations, all of which can help develop a common language and framework for faculty to engage in conversations about vocation with students.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Jennifer Brink</em></strong>, Director of Academic Advising and First-Year Experience, Gordon College<br><strong><em>Davina C. Lopez</em></strong>, Professor of Religious Studies, Eckerd College<br><strong><em>Michael McKinney</em></strong>, Vice President for Student Life and Dean of Students, Thiel College<br><strong><em>Eugene T. Torigoe</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Physics, Thiel College</blockquote></div><div><br><h3>Institutional Vocation: Fostering Leadership, Promoting Inclusion </h3>Recent discussions of vocation have raised questions as to whether the language can be usefully applied to institutions as well as to individuals. In short, can colleges have callings? This session begins with a broad discussion of institutional vocation in areas such as leadership development, strategic planning, and the role of trustees. Presenters will provide detailed examples from their own institutions as to the difference that this approach can make. Especially in church-related higher education, attention to institutional vocation can help leaders think about the institution’s religious heritage and promote greater inclusion and interfaith dialogue. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Florence D. Amamoto</em></strong>, Professor Emerita of English, Japanese Studies, and Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies, Gustavus Adolphus College<br><strong><em>Jason A. Mahn</em></strong>, Director of the Presidential Center for Faith and Learning and Associate Professor of Religion, Augustana College (IL)<br><strong><em>Julianne E. Wallace</em></strong>, Assistant to the President for Mission and Director of Campus Ministry, Alvernia University</blockquote></div><div><br><h3>Integrating Vocation into the Curriculum</h3>It can be difficult to integrate vocational reflection and discernment programming into the curriculum, especially given the sharply disciplinary structure of contemporary academic institutions. In this session, presenters will describe the progress that their institutions have made toward curricular integration, whether in the general education program or in particular academic disciplines. What kinds of conversations are needed in order to make such curricular changes possible? Which understandings of vocation are most valuable in helping faculty members to see the benefits of integrating the concept into their courses? How can the vocational components of particular courses be evaluated? <br><blockquote><strong><em>Daniel E. Fox</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Economics and Finance and Department Chair, Ashland University<br><strong><em>Kelly Lettieri</em></strong>, Assistant Director of Internships, King’s College (PA)<br><strong><em>James M. Wallace</em></strong>, Associate Dean of Arts and Sciences and Professor of English, King’s College (PA)</blockquote></div><div><br><h3>Interactive Vocational Discernment </h3>What kinds of activities and exercises are most useful for engaging students in vocational reflection and discernment? What do educators need to have in their “vocational toolkits” in order to make such opportunities as successful as possible? In this session, presenters will demonstrate classroom activities that incorporate interactive experiences, thereby helping students come to a better understanding of particular dimensions of vocation. Time for discussion will follow the demonstrations, and related resources will be available. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Eric R. Anderson</em></strong>, Director of Career Development, Capital University<br><strong><em>Dain J. Gotto</em></strong>, Director of Vocation Programming, Aurora University<br><strong><em>Stephanie Hart</em></strong>, Administrative Director, Pathways to Purpose Program, Spring Hill College</blockquote></div><div><br><h3>Visionary Mentors and Reflective Advisors</h3>Advising and mentoring programs can make a great deal of difference in students’ experience of vocational reflection and discernment. In this session, presenters will examine two emerging concepts in this field and will describe their own institutions’ experiences in implementing reflective advising and visionary mentoring. The goal is to help advisors feel better equipped for, and confident about, making an impact through their advising and mentoring conversations with students. Session participants will be invited to engage in discussion about their own campus programming in these areas.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Scott M. Davidson</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Theology and Director of the First-Year Program, Alvernia University<br><strong><em>Elyse Nelson Winger</em></strong>, University Chaplain, Illinois Wesleyan University</blockquote></div><div><br><h3>Vocation from the Centers: Insights from Calling and Career Centers</h3>Calling and career “centers” have become increasingly popular as hubs of campus vocational exploration activity. Such centers need to develop strong partnerships with students, faculty members, staff, and other stakeholders—across campus and beyond. In this session, panelists will discuss efforts on their campuses to foster vocational exploration partnerships and programming through the work of a center. Representing a variety of institutional contexts, approaches, and models, presenters will describe the mission and structure of each center, its primary audiences, and its most effective practices and programs, as well as lessons learned thus far. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Shonn Colbrunn</em></strong>, Executive Director, Boerigter Center for Calling and Career, Hope College<br><strong><em>Krista E. Hughes</em></strong>, Director, Muller Center and Associate Professor of Religion, Newberry College (SC)<br><strong><em>Katie M. Mitchell</em></strong>, Director, Center for Career and Calling, Anderson University (IN)<br><strong><em>Paul C. Pribbenow</em></strong>, President, Augsburg University<br><strong><em>Ryan J. White</em></strong>, Associate Dean of Advising and Applied Learning and Director of First-Year Seminars, Hope College<br></blockquote></div>
Networking and Refreshment BreakNetworking and Refreshment Break26
Welcome and Bobby Fong Memorial Keynote Address: Rebecca S. ChoppWelcome and Bobby Fong Memorial Keynote Address: Rebecca S. Chopp2Rebecca S. ChoppPlenary Session<h3>Welcome and Conference Overview</h3><blockquote><strong>Richard Ekman</strong>, President, CIC<br><strong><em>David S. Cunningham</em></strong>, Director of NetVUE, CIC<br></blockquote><br><h3>Bobby Fong Memorial Keynote Address</h3><em>This keynote address is offered in memory of Bobby Fong (1950–2014), who served as president of Ursinus College and Butler University and played a key role in the founding of NetVUE.</em><br><br><p></p><h4>The Future as Vocation</h4><p>Current trends for work, society, and the individual’s search for meaning are disrupting our traditional understanding of vocation. By some accounts, nearly 60 percent of today’s jobs will be automated by 2030, and 85 percent of the jobs in 2030 haven’t been invented yet. Seven out of ten workers face an uncertain future. Continuous vocational navigation through career, life, and society will be more important than ever, and this process will be shaped by a person’s faith commitments, values, talents, and political and cultural perspectives. In this period of accelerating change, how can higher education leaders shape a 21st-century understanding of vocation that encourages students and graduates to develop lives of meaning, purpose, and commitment? Which educational practices effectively support the skills, habits, and capacities needed for life-long vocational design and agility?<br> <br>Chair: <strong> <em>Tracy Y. Espy</em></strong>, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Pfeiffer University<br></p>
Closing Plenary Session: Robert M. Franklin, Jr.Closing Plenary Session: Robert M. Franklin, Jr.18Robert M. Franklin, Jr.Plenary Session<h3>​The Vocation of Moral Leadership</h3><p>Moral leadership across societies has become an urgent concern. Ethical reform and social change take place when ideas, individuals, and institutions align for the common good. Colleges and universities often have led and modeled change to advance our society. This address will suggest that educational leaders are called to demonstrate moral leadership with confidence and humility at a time of declining intellectual clarity and social and moral cohesion. By embracing this work as a vocation, leaders can embody and act with courage, integrity, and imagination as they strive to serve the common good and invite others to join them. This vocation can be carried out by gifted individuals, dedicated groups, and enduring institutions.<br><br>Chair: <strong><em>Kent L. Henning</em></strong>, President, Grand View University<br></p>
Boxed Lunches and DepartureBoxed Lunches and Departure19
Concurrent SessionsConcurrent Sessions16Concurrent Session<h3>Collaboration across Campus: Getting Everyone Involved</h3>By their very nature, academic departments and campus offices tend to function independently of one another. While these “silos” can be useful in providing independence and autonomy, they can make it difficult for students to find a common structure on which they can rely. Such structures can be achieved through a campus-wide focus on holistic student development, with an emphasis on pathways for vocational exploration and a shared common language for faculty members and staff. In this session, presenters will discuss strategies for cross-campus collaboration and integration of curricular and co-curricular programmatic efforts related to vocation. <br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Marie E. Leichliter-Krause</em></strong>, Assistant Provost, Waynesburg University<br><strong><em>Genna L. Steele</em></strong>, Academic Projects and Grants Coordinator, Waynesburg University<br><strong><em>Zandra L. Wagoner</em></strong>, University Chaplain, University of La Verne<br> <div> <strong><em>Kathleen F. Weaver</em></strong>, Associate Provost for Research and Professional Development, Loyola Marymount University</div></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Creating Vocation Programs for Sophomores</h3>Research suggests that the sophomore year is a critical time for undergraduates. Lacking both the novelty of the first year and the sense of accomplishment of the junior and senior years, sophomores often find themselves at loose ends and are at greatest risk for dropping out of college altogether. Presenters will describe how they have sought to counter these difficulties by engaging sophomores in vocational exploration and discernment. The presentation will describe specific strategies and initiatives for engaging faculty and staff in this work, for integrating it into existing programs and activities, and for developing new programs that can help frame the work of vocational exploration among sophomore students. <br> <blockquote> <strong> <em>Andrew Bailey</em></strong>, Assistant Controller, Luther College<br><strong><em>Rachel F. Brummel</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies and Political Science, Luther College<br><strong><em>Cynthia M. Gettys</em></strong>, Director, Center for Teaching Excellence and Biblical Foundations of Faith and Learning, Southern Adventist University<br> <div> <strong><em>Rick Norskov</em></strong>, Professor of Biology, Southern Adventist University</div></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Infusing Institutional Commitments through Print and Online Resources</h3>Many resources are available for guiding students in faith-based vocational discernment, but these resources may not match the specific character of an institution or the developmental level of its students. In this session, presenters will frame their respective projects in relation to the institutional strategic plan, then describe the contents of each (<cite>Called: A PLNU Vocational Reader</cite> and <cite>CALLED! An Online Field Guide</cite>). They will describe how the materials are being used by faculty members, students, and staff, as well as how they helped to evaluate the contributions of calling-infused activities to relevant vocational outcomes.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Lynette H. Bikos</em></strong>, Director of Research, Professor of Clinical Psychology, and Associate Dean, School of Psychology, Family, and Community, Seattle Pacific University<br><strong><em>Kerry D. Fulcher</em></strong>, Provost and Chief Academic Officer, Point Loma Nazarene University <br><strong><em>Jacqui Smith-Bates</em></strong>, Dean of Career Learning and Support, Seattle Pacific University<br> <div><strong><em>Maria R. Zack</em></strong>, Special Assistant to the President for Planning and Chair, Mathematical, Information and Computer Sciences, and Physics and Engineering Departments, Point Loma Nazarene University</div></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Institutional Heritage and Vocational Discernment</h3>Church-related colleges and universities often face a dilemma with regard to their own institutional heritage. By emphasizing their religious commitments, they may potentially limit the institution’s ability to recruit a sufficiently diverse body of students (and faculty members). On the other hand, a college’s religious heritage often allows it to distinguish itself more clearly from its peer institutions and to provide its students with the tools to focus on issues that they might not otherwise encounter. In this session, three experienced leaders of church-related colleges and universities will reflect on how their institution’s religious heritage and its commitment to vocational reflection mutually reinforce one another. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Brian T. Johnson</em></strong>, Assistant Vice President for Mission and Ministry, Valparaiso University<br><strong><em>Celestino J. Limas</em></strong>, Vice President for Student Life, Elizabethtown College<br> <div><strong><em>Tracy Wenger Sadd</em></strong>, Chaplain and Executive Director, Purposeful Life Work and Ethical Leadership, Elizabethtown College</div></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Integrative Approaches to Career Development</h3>The role of the career center has evolved considerably over the past few decades, away from a narrow focus on job placement toward more holistic models. Still, in many contexts, some staff and faculty members continue to think of their areas (career center, co-curricular activities, and academic programs) as existing in three separate realms. In this session, career development professionals will consider how campus conversations about vocation and calling can help educators in all three realms—faculty members, student life leaders, and career center personnel—provide students with a more integrated undergraduate experience. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Dee Pierce</em></strong>, Director, Center for Vocation and Career, Wheaton College (IL)<br> <div><strong><em>Caroline Sawyer</em></strong>, Director of Internships and Career Development, Pfeiffer University</div></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Student Leadership in Vocational Programming</h3>Undergraduate students who have been introduced to the concept of vocation can become student leaders within programs at their own institutions. But such students may still need considerable guidance and oversight from faculty members and staff. In this presentation, a group of NetVUE leaders will describe how students function in vocational leadership roles at their institutions. Using examples from a variety of programs involving students—peer mentoring, institutional publications, and counselor interns—this session will explore the delicate balance of allowing students freedom in their leadership roles and keeping faculty and staff advisors sufficiently involved to ensure success. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Beth A. Clark-Thomas</em></strong>, Dean for Retention and Student Success and Professor of Education, Malone University<br><strong><em>Tracy S. Parkinson</em></strong>, Vice President for Strategic Partnerships and Special Assistant to the President, Coker College<br> <div><strong><em>Lisa E. Sharpe</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Digital Media, Greenville University</div></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>The Impact of Faculty Vocational Journeys</h3>Undergraduates often imagine that their professors and mentors have followed nearly linear routes into their areas of expertise, while most faculty members tend to describe their vocational journeys as a much more winding path. When students discover this, they often feel less anxiety about their own questions and uncertainties about their callings in life. In this session, presenters will describe how they have curated and made public the stories of staff and faculty members at their institutions. Through a variety of media, and using a number of different resources, these stories can empower students to explore how their lives and their gifts can help them tell the story of their own vocational journeys.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Matthew T. Buns</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Kinesiology and Health Science, Concordia University, St. Paul<br><strong><em>Jason B. Meyler</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Spanish and Chair, Department of World Languages, Mount Mary University <br><strong><em>Sarah Olejniczak</em></strong>, Dean for Student Affairs, Mount Mary University <br> <div><strong><em>Marilyn Reineck</em></strong>, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Concordia University, St. Paul</div></blockquote><div> <br> </div><h3>Vocation as a Dialogue between Self-Understanding and the Common Good </h3>How can vocational discernment programs foster dialogue between a healthy attention to the self and a well-grounded understanding of the common good? In this session, presenters will describe how these conversations are taking place at their respective institutions, which share a Roman Catholic identity but have very different student populations and curricular emphases. Both institutions use instruments for personality discernment and draw on institutional mission to ground understandings of the common good. They also emphasize vocational discernment as a dialogue between self and world, using approaches such as mindfulness, well-being, and virtue. Attention will be given to employing concrete practices in such contexts as advising, first-year courses, online instruction, and co-curricular programming.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Anita M. Houck</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Religious Studies and Joyce McMahon Hank Aquinas Chair in Catholic Theology, Saint Mary’s College (IN)<br><strong><em>Bradford T. Stull</em></strong>, Professor of English, Coordinator of General Education, and Coordinator of Global Scholars Program, Rivier University</blockquote>
NetVUE Advisory Council MeetingNetVUE Advisory Council Meeting31
Meeting of the Council for Christian Colleges & UniversitiesMeeting of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities32<h3>“The Christian University and Vocation: Purposes and Strategies”</h3><blockquote>Convener: <strong><em>Richard Ostrander</em></strong>, Vice President for Research and Scholarship, CCCU<br></blockquote><em>Please note: Separate registration is required for this meeting.</em>
Meeting of the Network of ELCA Colleges and UniversitiesMeeting of the Network of ELCA Colleges and Universities33<h3>​“The Purposeful Calling of Lutheran Colleges: Vocation Strategies for Today’s ‘Generation Z’ Students” </h3><blockquote>Convener: <strong><em>Lisa Sethre-Hofstad</em></strong>, Vice President for Student Development and Campus Life, Concordia College (MN)<br></blockquote><em>Please note: Separate registration is required for this meeting.</em>
Conference RegistrationConference Registration34
Book SigningBook Signing35<p>​Author: <strong><em>Rebecca S. Chopp</em></strong></p>
Dinner and RemarksDinner and Remarks4<p>​Chair: <strong> <em>Richard Ekman</em></strong>, President, CIC<br><br>Invocation: <strong> <em>Beverly W. Hogan</em></strong>, President, Tougaloo College<br><br>Remarks: <strong> <em>Jessicah K. Duckworth</em></strong> is program director in the religion division of Lilly Endowment Inc., where she supports projects focusing on the exploration of Christian vocation across the lifespan, among many other initiatives. She previously served as assistant professor of congregation and community care at Luther Seminary in Minnesota and assistant professor of Christian formation and teaching at Wesley Theological Seminary. She is an ordained minister in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and the author of <cite>Wide Welcome: How the Unsettling Presence of Newcomers Can Save the Church</cite> (2013). Duckworth earned a BA in American studies and classics from George Washington University, an MDiv from the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia, and a PhD from Princeton Theological Seminary.<br></p>
Conference RegistrationConference Registration36
Morning Prayer in the Christian TraditionMorning Prayer in the Christian Tradition37<p>​Worship Leaders: <br><strong><em>Jonathan R. Huggins</em></strong>, Chaplain, Berry College<br><strong><em>Anne D. McKee</em></strong>, Campus Minister, Maryville College<br></p>
Lunch Conversation: How Student Vocation Programs Cultivate Future NetVUE Leaders (Optional)Lunch Conversation: How Student Vocation Programs Cultivate Future NetVUE Leaders (Optional)9​A number of younger NetVUE institutional leaders were introduced to vocation exploration when they were undergraduates, including those who studied at institutions that participated in the Programs for the Theological Exploration of Vocation previously supported by Lilly Endowment Inc. Many of these younger leaders credit their undergraduate experience as having played a key role in their decision to lead vocation programs today. In this special lunchtime session, three such leaders will reflect on the relationship between their undergraduate studies and their current roles. They will describe the opportunities that were significant in their own formation, how these experiences affected their continued vocational exploration, and how these programs shaped their approach to vocational exploration in their current contexts. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Daniel G. Meyers</em></strong>, Director, Center for Faith and Vocation, Butler University<br><strong><em>Samantha L. Miller</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of the History of Christianity, Anderson University (IN)<br><strong><em>Amir St. Clair</em></strong>, Executive Director, Wackerlin Center for Faith and Action, Aurora University</blockquote>
NetVUE Focus Group (By invitation only)NetVUE Focus Group (By invitation only)9<p>​Convener: <strong><em>Daniel O. Aleshire</em></strong>, NetVUE Program Evaluator, CIC, and former Executive Director, Association of Theological Schools</p>
Conference RegistrationConference Registration38
NetVUE Focus Group (By invitation only)NetVUE Focus Group (By invitation only)15<p>​Convener: <strong><em>Daniel O. Aleshire</em></strong>, NetVUE Program Evaluator, CIC, and former Executive Director, Association of Theological Schools</p>
Roman Catholic MassRoman Catholic Mass39<p>​Celebrant: <strong><em>Paul H. Colloton, OSFS</em></strong>, Director of Campus Ministry and University Chaplain, Ohio Dominican University</p>
Welcoming ReceptionWelcoming Reception35<p>The reception provides an inviting setting to greet old friends and meet new ones.<br></p>
Opportunities for Vocational ReflectionOpportunities for Vocational Reflection40<h3>Quiet Space for Contemplation and Meditation</h3><h3><br>Prayer Labyrinth<br></h3>
Concurrent SessionsConcurrent Sessions41Concurrent Session<h3>​Beyond the Major: Undeclared and Interdisciplinary Students</h3> Many students come to college without a clear sense of direction for their lives; others follow a path that sometimes lies outside the traditional majors. In response, Azusa Pacific launched an interdisciplinary studies program with vocation as its foundation, as well as its Exploring program, which offers a specialized first-year seminar and a speaker series. Faculty and staff program leaders were trained in a graduate-level theology course (A Lived Theology of Work) and they in turn trained the university’s student life staff to provide co-curricular support to students in these programs. This presentation will highlight the development of these programs, key partnerships required to make them possible, challenges that were encountered (and that continue to be addressed), and initial efforts at assessment.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Courtney W. Davis</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Communication Studies, Azusa Pacific University<br><div><strong><em>Karen M. Rouggly</em></strong>, Director for Mobilization, Center for Student Action, Azusa Pacific University</div></blockquote><br><h3>Diversity and Inclusion in Vocation</h3>Colleges and universities across the country are being compelled to take seriously their roles in the nation’s history of racism and white supremacy as they seek to envision and live into more just, equitable futures. Wesleyan College has recently begun engaging this effort in a more intentional way, focusing on vocational discernment as a complement to the college’s wider work of racial healing and transformation. This presentation will discuss outcomes of this effort, especially the value of creating space for educators to consider how to better prepare students to engage a diverse world. Presenters will invite discussion as to how vocational reflection can help conceptualize diversity and inclusion in ways that go beyond policies and practices.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Sarah Schanck</em></strong>, Director of Career Development, Wesleyan College (GA)<br><div><strong><em>Tyler M. Schwaller</em></strong>, Chaplain and Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, Wesleyan College (GA)</div></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>Flourishing and Suffering: A Durable Vision of Vocation</h3>Vocational exploration and discernment programs often try to work collaboratively toward a vision of calling that is rooted in human flourishing. But as staff and faculty members explore vocational issues more deeply, often questions emerge about the place of suffering in a vision of vocation that is rooted in flourishing and joy. What resources can we draw upon in order to develop such a vision? Presenters will facilitate a conversation in which participants ponder the intersection of vocation, suffering, and joy.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Aaron J. Kuecker</em></strong>, Provost, Trinity Christian College<br><strong><em>Rebekah L. Starkenburg</em></strong>, Vice President for Student Life, Trinity Christian College<br><div><strong><em>Jeff J. Timmer</em></strong>, Director of Vocation and Career Development, Trinity Christian College<br></div></blockquote><div><br></div> <h3>Thriving over Time: Sustaining Vocational Exploration Programs</h3>How can educational leaders ensure that vocational exploration initiatives thrive over time? How might these programs be evaluated in ways that help various stakeholders recognize the importance of sustaining them? How are these matters affected by the particular circumstances of an institution, including its curriculum design, budgetary constraints, and institutional mission? In this session, presenters will share insights gleaned from their experiences in sustaining programs in vocational exploration and discernment. Particular attention will be given to fiscally modest strategies that address issues of sustainability, as well as program assessment and faculty development initiatives.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Daniel Kirkpatrick</em></strong>, Assistant Professor and Program Chair of Christian Studies and Director, Calling and Servant Leadership Education Center, University of the Southwest<br><div><strong><em>Cynthia A. Wells</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Higher Education, Director, Ernest L. Boyer Center, and Associate Director of Faculty Development for Teaching and Learning, Messiah College</div></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>Vocation and Gen Z: Meaning-Making with Digital Natives</h3>Current undergraduates are no longer “Millennials”; their cohort, often called iGen or Gen Z, is marked by a very different range of concerns and commitments. These students may have little background in the faith traditions in which they were raised or no significant faith commitments at all. Their experiences are heavily shaped by the overwhelming presence of social media along with its tendency to heighten personal anxiety and to increase fear of commitment. These matters need attention from educators seeking to foster vocational conversations in the classroom and in co-curricular activities. This presentation builds on insights from the October 2017 NetVUE regional gathering “Vocation and Gen Z: Meaning-Making with Digital Natives,” held at Benedictine University. <br><blockquote><strong><em>Carrie M. Ankeny</em></strong>, Director of Campus Ministry, Benedictine University (IL)<br><div><strong><em>Christine M. Fletcher</em></strong>, Associate Professor of Theology and Director of General Education, Benedictine University (IL)</div></blockquote><br><h3>Vocation and the Under-Resourced Student</h3>For students who face challenges such as socio-economic factors, family demands, lack of parental support, or a family culture that is unfamiliar with attending college, daily demands can easily develop into crises that can derail their education. Because these students may have had little opportunity to consider the concept of vocation, guiding them toward vocational reflection and discernment can be an uphill battle. This presentation will consider how minority, first-generation, and otherwise “under-resourced” students can be affected by vocational exploration programs and will examine programmatic efforts to make the conversation more inclusive of all students.<br><blockquote><div><strong><em>Phillip D. Farmer</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Social Work and Department Chair, Behavioral and Social Sciences, Jarvis Christian College</div></blockquote><div><br></div><h3>Vocational Discernment: A Discourse of Privilege?</h3>Much of the scholarly and popular discourse on vocation describes a fulfilling journey that brings personal satisfaction and serves a needy world. But this is not the way that many people experience the world of work, which often requires dealing with disappointments: expecting a job and finding none, or lacking a sense of fit for the work that one does find. This presentation recommends three shifts in the discussion of vocation that can minimize perceptions of it as “privileged” discourse and more adequately address the lived realities of work. These shifts include developing a communal perspective rather than an individual one; focusing on social context as well as personal agency; and thinking of social transformation in a mutual and reflexive way, rather than as a mandate to “change the world.”<br><blockquote><div><strong><em>Christine Jeske</em></strong>, Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Wheaton College (IL)</div></blockquote><br><h3>Vocational Discernment as a Key to Retention</h3>While student retention is a key goal for every college and university, institutions are not always aware of the role that vocational discernment can play as a powerful contributor to student success. By assessing the impact of vocation programs on retention, practitioners can support recruitment efforts, advocate for additional resources, and encourage broader student participation. In this session, participants will be introduced to tools to analyze retention and student success measures, inventory their vocational discernment activities, and develop action plans for vocational programming. Participants will leave the session with the language, metrics, and ideas that they can use to advocate for expansion and deepening of vocational discernment as a key to retention.<br><blockquote><strong><em>Nancy C. Biggio</em></strong>, Associate Provost for Administration, Samford University</blockquote>
Book SigningBook Signing42<p>​Author: <strong><em>Robert M. Franklin, Jr.</em></strong></p>
Plenary Session Panel: Katherine (Trina) Janiec Jones, Rachel S. Mikva, Anantanand Rambachan, and Zeenat RahmanPlenary Session Panel: Katherine (Trina) Janiec Jones, Rachel S. Mikva, Anantanand Rambachan, and Zeenat Rahman6Katherine (Trina) Janiec Jones; Rachel S. Mikva; Anantanand Rambachan; Zeenat RahmanPlenary Session<h3>WELCOMING REMARKS</h3><div> <strong> <em> <br>Christopher L. Coble</em></strong> is vice president for religion at Lilly Endowment Inc. He previously served for 16 years as program director in the Endowment’s religion division. An ordained minister in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), he has served congregations in Indiana, North Carolina, Iowa, and Massachusetts. Coble is a historian of American religion, and his research interests focus on issues of religious formation and the transmission of faith in Christian churches. He earned a BA from Wabash College, an MDiv from Duke Divinity School, and a ThD from Harvard University.</div><div> <br> </div><h3>PLENARY SESSION PANEL</h3><div> <br> </div><h4>“Vocation in Multi-Faith Environments: Lifestance, Diversity, Difference”<br></h4>The language of vocation has deep roots in the Christian theological tradition. Given the increasingly multi-faith context of undergraduate life, many have asked whether this terminology can truly serve as a new vocabulary for higher education. Yet all students—regardless of their academic field, religious background, or demographic identity—will encounter people of diverse lifestances and beliefs. Students need space to reflect on their experiences and understandings of differences, particularly as they explore and discern their own vocations. The three scholars on this panel have explored these issues in their contributions to the newest volume from the NetVUE Scholarly Resources Project, <cite>Hearing Vocation Differently: Meaning, Purpose, and Identity in the Multi-Faith Academy</cite> (Oxford University Press, 2019). They will engage in a conversation about how a broader understanding of vocational exploration and discernment can address the increasingly diverse context of undergraduate education today.
Networking and Refreshment BreakNetworking and Refreshment Break7




Deadline for Proposal Submission: November 9, 2018

Participating institutions are invited to develop a concurrent session presentation about any aspect of vocational exploration and discernment. Ideas and programs that emerge from campus experience linked to NetVUE programs, grants, campus visits, faculty seminars, or other initiatives are especially encouraged, as are presentations that intersect with this year’s conference theme, “Broadening the Scope of Vocational Exploration.” Presentations may focus on any facet of vocation, whether from the perspective of a curricular program in an academic discipline (theology, ethics, literature, psychology, or any other field) or across disciplines, or in relation to campus activities in advising and mentoring, career development, campus ministry, community engagement, or any other campus venue where vocational exploration takes place. Proposals may share effective practices, emerging opportunities, or assessment of what has worked well—and what could be improved—for campus vocational exploration programs.

Guidelines for Submitting a Concurrent Session Proposal

Presentation proposals should include a plan for 15–20 minutes of presentation complemented by a time for questions and discussion with session participants. Some sessions allow 45 minutes for a presentation by an individual or a single institutional team followed by discussion. Other sessions are 60 minutes, which can allow for two or more institutions or individuals to present on closely related themes. To propose a concurrent session presentation, please submit the following (not to exceed two pages):
  1. Title that describes the presentation topic or theme;
  2. Description of the proposed content;
  3. Two or three discussion questions designed to encourage conversation among session participants; and
  4. Names and titles of those who will make the presentation.
Please include a one-paragraph biographical description of each presenter that references current and previous positions, published academic works, and notable awards and service to the campus or elsewhere.

Concurrent session proposals should be submitted to David S. Cunningham, director of NetVUE, at Proposals must be submitted by November 9, 2018.

An Ongoing Conversation

As a learning community, NetVUE supports member campuses as they seek to broaden the scope of vocational exploration and discernment. Learning communities flourish when members share common readings, join in mutual conversations, and compare their perspectives. At the 2019 NetVUE Conference, the initiatives described below are designed to stimulate and strengthen the NetVUE community of reflection and discernment.

participants talking to each other seated at roundtables 

Pre-Conference Readings

Prior to the conference, all participants will be encouraged to read a small selection of materials to help focus discussions throughout the conference. Participants will be provided access to these readings several weeks in advance of the conference.

Guided Reflections on Vocation

Conference participants can consider their own vocations during opportunities for individual reflection and communal liturgy. Participants will receive information about these opportunities upon arrival in Louisville.

Small Discussion Groups

On Thursday afternoon and during the Friday lunch, participants will meet in small groups with campus leaders who work in similar roles on NetVUE campuses. Friday and Saturday breakfast sessions also will provide opportunities for discussions about specific vocational topics. The primary purpose of these conversations is to compare and contrast approaches to vocational reflection and discernment and to consider how vocational initiatives can be sustained over time.

Hotel and Travel


​The Galt House Hotel

140 North Fourth Street
Louisville, KY 40202
(502) 589-5200

 Hotel Information

front view of hotelPlease note: Participants must make their own hotel reservations after registering for the conference. The hotel room rate for conference dates is included with conference registration.

Room Rate:
$149 single/double per night

Hotel Reservation Deadline:
February 15, 2019

Louisville’s only waterfront hotel, the Galt House Hotel is located four blocks from Fourth Street Live and eight miles from the Louisville International Airport. The hotel also is just minutes from several Louisville attractions including the KFC Yum! Center, Louisville Slugger Museum and Factory, the Muhammad Ali Center, and Whiskey and Museum Rows. A family run hotel since 1835, the Galt House Hotel is now the largest hotel in Kentucky, consisting of two towers. Connecting the towers is the famous Conservatory, which features a cafe, a cocktail lounge and gathering area, an aviary, and a greenhouse space. The hotel offers seven restaurants and lounges including the famous rooftop Rivue Restaurant and Lounge with its spectacular views of downtown and the waterfront.

Additional Overflow Hotel

Please note: Due to the high level of participation at the 2019 CIC NetVUE Conference, only a limited number of rooms remain available at the Galt House Hotel, the conference hotel. In the event that participants are unable to secure a reservation at the Galt House Hotel, CIC encourages participants to contact the Hampton Inn Louisville Downtown directly to make lodging arrangements. The Hampton Inn is about a ten-minute walk from the Galt House Hotel.

Please note: Should your plans change and you can no longer attend the conference, contact Lynne Spoelhof at before cancelling your hotel reservation so that your accommodations may be transferred to another participant wishing to attend.  

Hampton Inn Louisville Downtown
101 East Jefferson Street
Louisville, Kentucky 40202
Tel: (502) 585-2200

Room Rate: $139 single/double
Hotel Reservation Deadline: February 15, 2019

CIC has reserved additional rooms at the Hampton Inn Louisville Downtown and will cover the room expense of up to three team members’ guest rooms for the conference dates, March 21 and 22. Participants must make their own hotel reservations. Reserve online or call the hotel directly at (502) 585-2200 and indicate that you are with the CIC–NetVUE Conference to reserve your guest room at the conference rate. Although CIC will cover participants’ guest room expense, your credit card information will be required to secure the reservation and for any incidental charges that might be incurred.

The Hampton Inn Louisville Downtown is located just eight blocks away from the Louisville Slugger factory and from the two newest distilleries, Jim Beam Urban Stillhouse and Evan Williams Bourbon Experience. Also, just blocks away is the thriving entertainment district, Fourth Street Live, and a few of the city’s museums including the famous Muhammad Ali Center.

The Hampton Inn is about a ten-minute walk from the Galt House Hotel. Amenities include complimentary wireless Internet access. Hotel check-in is 3:00 p.m. and check-out time is 12 noon.

Hotel Reservation Procedure

Participants first need to register for the NetVUE Conference in order to make a hotel reservation. After registration, participants will receive a confirmation email that includes detailed instructions and a code to make a reservation at the Galt House Hotel. CIC will cover the expense of the first three team members’ hotel rooms for the conference dates. The registration fee for fourth and fifth team members already includes payment of the discounted hotel room rate of $149 single/double per night. Participants are responsible for making their own hotel reservations.

The hotel reservation deadline is Friday, February 15, 2019. Hotel rooms may sell out before the deadline, so participants are encouraged to register for the Conference and reserve their hotel rooms as soon as possible. Please note that hotel reservations made after the deadline can only be accommodated on a space-available basis and may be at a rate higher than the CIC rate.

Participants who wish to extend their stay beyond the conference dates may do so at their own expense. A limited number of rooms are available at the conference rate for an extended stay. Please call the Galt House Hotel at (502) 589-5200 to make arrangements.


Travel Costs

Please note that travel expenses of all team members are the responsibility of individuals or their institutions. A limited number of travel grants are available to NetVUE member colleges and universities with limited resources or with unusually high travel expenses. To inquire about a travel grant, please contact David S. Cunningham, director of NetVUE, at or (616) 395-6750.

Hotel Parking

Self-parking for conference participants at the Galt House Hotel is $15 per day, and valet parking is $23 per day.

Galt House Shuttle Service

Xtreme Transportation provides airport shuttle service. Cost is $15 one way and $25 round trip when booked in advance. The shuttle departs Louisville International Airport every half hour from 7:15 a.m.–12:45 p.m. and hourly from 1:15–10:15 p.m.

The shuttle from the Galt House Hotel to the airport departs every half hour from 4:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m. and hourly from 1:00–11:00 p.m. To schedule, contact Xtreme Transportation by phone at (502) 561-4022, by email at, or the Xtreme Transportation website Opens in new window.


Taxicabs are available at the airport terminal traffic island on the left of the taxi stand. The estimated fare to the Galt House Hotel is $20 one way. The Louisville International Airport (SDF) taxicab providers are:
  • CityScoot—(502) 566-6384
  • Green Cab—(502) 635-6400; (502) 797-6064
  • Ready Cab—(502) 451-4114
  • Taxi7—(502) 777-7777
  • Yellow Cab—(502) 636-5511


Lyft and Uber are the only authorized ridesharing services available from the Louisville Airport. The Lyft and Uber pick-up area is located on the lower level, east side of the terminal on the inner curb.