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Students Advocates Conference

2023 Student Advocates Conference

This year’s virtual convening will bring together a variety of mentors, educators, student support staff, and thought leaders throughout the business and community sectors to navigate the historic programmatic changes that have recently taken place in Indiana. Attendees will have the opportunity to hear from and engage with Commission staff and partners who are leading the efforts on 21st Century Scholars, FAFSA, the Indiana College Core Expansion and My College Core Tool, programs and initiatives underway for military and adult learners, and much more.

*Recordings of each session will be coming soon. Please check back in by 12/15/2023

Click here to review event details on the conference agenda

2022 Education Value Convening

(formerly Student Advocates Conference)

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

  • 9:00 a.m. | Keynote


    Chris Lowery, Commissioner for Higher Education

    Commissioner Lowery will situate today’s Education Value Convening in the context of Indiana’s college-going rate, adult postsecondary attainment and graduate retention rankings, highlight the economic and social justification for postsecondary education and present CHE’s high-level strategies to strengthen higher education access, completion and outcomes in Indiana.


  • 9:30 a.m. | Indiana's Education Value Research

    Indiana’s Education Value Research

    Charlee Beasor, Associate Commissioner for Marketing & Communications

    Allison Kuehr, Communications & PR Manager

    Charlee and Allison will present findings from CHE’s education value research and detail how the research is informing CHE’s education value campaign and strategies to equip Indiana’s trusted messengers to promote postsecondary education.


  • 10:30 a.m. | Break

    Please return to sessions around 10:40 a.m.

  • 10:40 a.m. | Breakout Sessions I

    Public Policy Update

    Josh Garrison, Associate Commissioner for Public Policy

    Josh will provide an overview of recent and potentially forthcoming federal and state policy changes influencing postsecondary education in Indiana.


    Statewide FAFSA Goal

    Michelle Ashcraft, Associate Commissioner for K-12 Strategy

    Michelle will present a statewide FAFSA goal for the 2023 high school graduating class, highlight strategies for strengthening FAFSA filing among high school seniors and postsecondary students, and present opportunities for Hoosier FAFSA filers to access Indiana’s robust state financial aid.


    Adult Student Report

    Lee Rathbun, Assistant Director for Data Analytics

    Lee will present for the first time the high-level findings of CHE’s forthcoming Adult Student Report.


  • 11:25 a.m. | Lunch Break

    Please return to afternoon sessions around 12:20 p.m.

  • 12:25 p.m. | Breakout Session II

    Expansion of the Indiana College Core

    Michelle Ashcraft, Associate Commissioner for K-12 Strategy

    Michelle will present a strategy to expand access to the Indiana College Core (ICC) to all Indiana high schools by 2026 and quadruple the number of completions by 2028.


    Credit for Prior Learning

    Stacy Townsley, Associate Commissioner for Adult Strategy

    Stacy will present key opportunities for greater utilization of credit for prior learning to increase Hoosier access to postsecondary opportunities, particularly for veterans.


  • 1:10 p.m. | Break

    Please return to sessions around 1:20 p.m.

  • 1:20 p.m. | Moderated Panel: Indiana's Partnership Pentagon

    Panel Discussion: Indiana’s Partnership Pentagon

    Chris Lowery, Commissioner for Higher Education

    José Medina, Community Partner Manager

    Commissioner Lowery will introduce Indiana’s Partnership Pentagon for postsecondary education and José Medina will moderate a discussion with coalition leaders representing education, employers, government, community organizations and philanthropy.

  • 2:00 p.m.  | Convening Ends

    A conference evaluation survey will be sent electronically in the next few days. Thank you for your ongoing commitment to higher education and student success.

2021 Student Advocates Conference

Wednesday, December 15 - Thursday, December 16

Keynote 1 | Education Value and Career Relevance
Teresa Lubbers, Commissioner for Higher Education
Jason Bearce, Vice President, Education & Workforce Development, Indiana Chamber of Commerce 


Keynote 2 | From Ally to Accomplice: Helping Student Succeed Beyond Completion
Chantee Eldridge, Ed.D, Vice President, Communications, Equity and Outreach, Strada Education Network

The 2021 Student Advocates Conference was generously supported by Strada Education Network and hosted in partnership with the Indiana Association for College Admission Counseling. Contact us at

2020 Student Advocates Conference


2019 Student Advocates Conference


2018 Student Advocates Conference

  • Click here to download the conference presentations.
  • Click here for a copy of the conference agenda.

2017 Student Advocates Conference

2016 Student Advocates Conference

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