Below are reflections on the 2022 Global Summit from the Caribbean delegation.

The 2022 Global Summit hosted by the IASAS was a riveting and truly rewarding experience for me. From the perspective of a virtual presenter, I was truly inspired by the commitment of the team that worked in the background to ensure that our contributions were integrated into the conference experience and that we had an equally connected experience as that of in-person attendees. I am especially thankful to both you and Abigail Smith who went the extra mile to ensure that I participated and to Lisa Moscaritolo and Ronan ONeill who delivered a quality CX experience. As a participant, I was truly impressed with the conference content and discussions. Not only was the experience well designed and executed but it stimulated an excitement for the future of the Student Services profession and in particular, the value and impact of our contributions as Student Services professionals. I walked away inspired to further explore and collaborate with my Student Services colleagues in the Caribbean towards enhancing the University experience for students. Kudos to the Executive IASAS team and thanks again for the opportunity to share!

Jarell Alder (Mr.)

The University of the West Indies

St. Augustine Campus

Trinidad & Tobago, WI

The location of the conference was an excellent choice by the planners. It was inspiring to see such a beautiful green campus and the UCC’s commitment to the environment. I am sure many campuses could learn from them.

The topics presented on were very relevant to our times and what students and student affairs practitioners and administrators are currently facing in today’s world. I also loved that so many international perspectives were represented in the breakout sessions.

I appreciated the focus on SDG goals as well. Encouraging student affairs practitioners and administrators to become even better global citizens, who are enthusiastic about implementing the SDGs in their environment and hopefully being able to pass on that zeal to students and University administrators to inspire more activism for positive change.

Ms. Donna Caesar

Administrative Officer

The UWI, St. Augustine Campus

Trinidad & Tobago

Attending the IASAS Conference virtually was a great experience. Kudos to the conference planning committee for ensuring that virtual participants were engaged and included meaningfully in conference activities. As a student leadership educator, I particularly enjoyed and connected closely to the rich perspectives of the youth and discussions about how we can intentionally strategize to integrate the United Nations sustainable development goals in student-led programming frameworks, policy planning and the creation of a sustainability institutional standards. The sessions that allowed participants to brainstorm practical approaches to the inclusion of SDGs was extremely insightful.  I certainly looking forward to continuing these discussions with student affairs colleagues globally and learning more about IASAS.

Ms. Amanda Best-Noel

The University of the West Indies

St Augustine Campus

Trinidad & Tobago, W.I.

Thank you for the opportunity to provide a brief account of my experience at the IASAS 6th Global Summit held in June this year. While this was not my first visit to Ireland, it was my first visit to Cork and the beautiful University College, Cork (UCC). What a magnificent Campus! In my opinion University College, Cork being an official Green Campus, provided the most appropriate environment to further discussions on sustainability and the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The rich biodiversity was evident as we strolled across the Campus and the enviable smart and energy efficient rooms, where the sessions were held, were world class. You may be aware that the UCC in March 2020, celebrated 10 years since becoming the first University in the world to be awarded a Green Flag from the Foundation for Environmental Education. We heard that The Green Campus Programme in UCC has evolved significantly since its inception. Strong commitment and support from the highest levels in the university has contributed to embedding sustainability across its operations, teaching, research and outreach. 

While the social interactions including the welcome event, the gala evening, the tour arranged for us to see some of Cork, including the famous Jameson Distillery, made the in person event more memorable, many of the presentations at the Summit stayed with me. Discussions on the UCC’s Graduate Attributes Programme stood out. This in relation to the skills, knowledge and abilities of their graduates, beyond disciplinary content knowledge, that are applicable in a range of contexts in their lives. We heard useful information about the 3 step transitioning initiative programme, from which the UWI may benefit in its quest to produce graduates who are recognized as well-rounded, curious, self-aware, individuals who continually learn new skills, are open to new ideas, and make things happen.  As an in-person attendee, we had the opportunity to observe first-hand the initiatives and resources which supported the UCC’s students in becoming SDG implementers. Many other presentations impacted on me and my UWI colleagues and these I intend to include in my overall report.

We were delighted to finally meet Lisa Moscaritolo, in person.  We were enlightened by hers and others who presented studies on the UN SDGs. In-person allowed for vibrant after session discussions on student affairs & services (SAS) commitment to student success and life-long learning. Facilitators shared in small group discussions on trends, opinions, and knowledge, and how SAS/HEI support SDGs and develop and educate students.

We took so many photos! I have included just a couple here of our time at UCC. I am grateful and happy for the opportunity to attend!

Ms. Indira  Ousman

The University of the West Indies

St. Augustine Campus

Trinidad and Tobago, W.I.

This was the first Global Summit that I would have attended and it certainly was a great experience. Unfortunately, I was unable to be in Ireland and hence I can speak only about the virtual experience. I believe that the face-to-face experience would have been exceptional, but we were not disadvantaged as virtual participants.  There were some instances of audio challenges, however, I believe that the planners went beyond to eliminate the challenges that sometimes plague virtual events, and in cases where there were issues I was very pleased with the professional and timely manner that these issues were resolved.  A great thank you especially to Ronan and the Team behind the scenes for a job well done.

I was appreciative of the high standards of the presentations and the fact that virtual participants were still afforded the chance to be involved in the conversations and discussions. The group sessions and the session for virtual participants on both days were very instructive for enjoying a meaningful event. There were still opportunities to meet new colleagues, forge new networks and benefit from diverse perspectives. There was richness in the discussions because of the diverse audience.

In general, the efficiency of the planning committee, the high standards set for the presenters and the topics that were addressed are commendable. The SDGs certainly influence all of our practice and us as practitioners as well as our regions.  Though my needs were met as a virtual participant, I am planning to attend in person at the next Summit!

Well done Planning Team!

Jacqueline Huggins Ph.D.

The University of the West Indies

St. Augustine Campus

Trinidad and Tobago, W.I.

As an in-person attendee, the 2022 Global Summit experience was truly impressive on all levels:

  1. The conference itself – which was well organised with constant updates and hand holding by Martha, Lisa and Kathy.  It also proved to be a rich learning opportunity, particularly the focus on the SDGs.  The breakout sessions allowed for us to share our various experiences and learn from our colleagues; learning which can be transferred to student services in The UWI context.
  2. The social activities – we were well taken care of: UCC campus tour, cocktail reception, dinner, distillery/Heritage Centre tour; truly appreciated and thoroughly enjoyable.  

Looking forward to the next Summit.

Ms. Simone Roberts

The University of the West Indies, St. Augustine

Trinidad and Tobago