Develop a SEM culture across your institution Develop a SEM culture across your institution
Discover innovative approaches from peers Discover innovative approaches from peers
Implement changes to achieve your goals Implement changes to achieve your goals

Why SEMM Forum?

Our goal is student success. The outcome is institutional success.

When professionals learn from peers at other institutions and share Canadian-made solutions across silos, organizational goals can be achieved and students benefit as a result.

SEMM Forum provides an opportunity for everyone on campus to have a positive and sustainable impact on the institutional outcomes that support student success.

Register Now Register Now

Develop a SEM culture across your institution:

Explore every factor impacting enrolment Explore every factor impacting enrolment
Learn from colleagues and peers across Canada Learn from colleagues across Canada
Get your whole team on the same page by learning together Get your whole team on the same page by learning together

Who Should Attend?

The SEMM Forum is for anyone involved in attracting, recruiting, or engaging students in their post-secondary experience in Canada. This includes strategic enrolment leaders, marketers, recruiters, registrars, senior administration, deans, student services and other professionals.

Here are some of the job titles of those that attended recent SEMM Forums:

  • Director of Recruitment and Admissions
  • Assistant Director, Student Recruitment
  • Director, Enrolment
  • Vice-President Academic Affairs and Registrar
  • Associate Director, Strategic Enrolment Management
  • Provost & Vice President
  • Registrar
  • Registrar & Director of Admissions
  • Associate Director, Student Services
  • Associate Registrar
  • Associate Registrar, Admissions & Recruitment
  • Associate Vice-President, Student Affairs
  • Enrolment Advisor
  • Chief Recruitment Officer
  • Dean
  • Recruitment Specialist
  • Director of Enrolment Services
  • Director of Finance
  • Director of Institutional Data Analysis & Planning
  • Director of Marketing
  • Director of Student Services
  • Director SEM
  • Manager, International Student Recruitment
  • Manager of Student Services & Athletics
  • Marketing & Recruitment Manager
  • Director of Admissions
  • Director of Communications and Marketing
  • Director, Admissions & Student Recruitment
  • Director, Academic Initiatives & Planning
  • Director, International Marketing & Recruitment
  • Director, Undergraduate Recruitment
  • Student Recruitment Officer
  • Registrar, Student Services
  • Executive Director of Student Experience
  • Executive Director, Student Services

Your Action Plan

1. Register your team today at the best rates. 1. Register your team today at the best rates.
2. Learn, make connections, and discover new strategies and tactics. 2. Learn, make connections, and discover new strategies and tactics.
3. Exceed your goals and objectives back on campus. 3. Exceed your goals and objectives.

Testimonials

See what past attendees say about the SEMM Forum.

"Every presentation I attended was well prepared, delivered professionally and had clear takeaways. It doesn't matter if you have been in the field for less than two years or 15 years. You will leave with knowledge you can start applying now."

Chanelle Landriault

Chanelle Landriault

Recruitment Manager, Le Collège Boréal

"SEMM is Canada's conversation. Participants come together to share their knowledge, experience and accomplishments with openness and a real willingness to help one another. It's like coming home to sit around the table with those who care about what I have to say and from whom I learn great lessons."

Mary Ross

Mary Ross

Registrar, University Canada West

"As an Associate Vice Provost, Strategic Enrolment Management, at one of Canada's medical doctoral universities, I appreciate the opportunity to connect with a variety of individuals (senior leaders through to those new to the field) to discuss emerging topics, trends, and best practices. I have not attended in a few years, and it reminded me that our environmental and cultural contexts are continuously changing and it is important to keep engaged."

Alison Pickrell

Alison Pickrell

Assistant Vice Provost, SEM, University of Saskatchewan

"As someone who is new to the field of recruitment, the SEMM forum provides not only "point in time" information, but credible and informed speakers to deliver it. Content, format, collaboration, expert delivery and support all combine to provide a Canadian event with great perspective."

Georgine Van de Mosselaer

Georgine Van de Mosselaer

Director of Advancement, Booth University College

"I've attended the SEMM Forum for several years now, and have always left with new ideas. I would definitely recommend those in education consider this event, be it delivered virtually or in-person."

Rita Chen

Rita Chen

Senior Manager, International Business Development, Seneca College

"The SEMM Forum is one of Canada's best opportunities to grow a deep understanding of enrolment management and marketing. The program is top-notch and so are the attendees; rarely do I see this type of high quality interaction between presenters and participants."

JP Rains

JP Rains

Director, Digital Strategy & Communications, Laurentian University

"The information presented was relevant to a wide range of post-secondary administrators. This is extremely important as communication between all levels of administration such as recruitment, marketing, student services, admissions and all other facets is needed in recruitment, retention and graduation initiatives."

Lorretta Neebar

Lorretta Neebar

Registrar & Director of Enrolment Management, University of Toronto Mississauga

"The SEMM Forum offers an insightful and engaging look at leading research and activity taking place across the higher-education landscape in Canada. It is a high-value learning opportunity for SEM professionals!"

Mark Kolanko

Mark Kolanko

Associate Registrar, Enrolment, St. Francis Xavier University

"I have worked in higher education communications for seven years but I just recently started a role focused on strategic recruitment communications. SEMM Forum was an incredibly timely and valuable introduction to a side of the student life cycle that is largely unfamiliar to me. I have some building blocks for success as I enter into this next chapter of my career. Thank you!"

Allie Downing

Allie Downing

Senior Communications Strategist, Recruitment & Admissions Enrolment Services, Wilfrid Laurier University

"I enjoyed learning from others in the field of enrollment management, marketing, and recruitment. The diverse perspectives they shared during the SEMM Forum were insightful and encouraging, and left me energized bringing back ideas for my institution."

Daniel Deschenes

Daniel Deschenes

Recruitment Officer, Campus Visitors, Brock University

"The SEMM Forum consistently provides a solid program with great opportunities to learn from and interact with our colleagues."

Tom Brophy

Tom Brophy

Senior Director, Student Affairs and Services, Saint Mary's University

View All

Feature Presenters

Panelist Headshot
Dr. Gervan Fearon

President,
George Brown College

Panelist Headshot
Angela Wolfe

Director, Indigenous Student Recruitment,
Simon Fraser University

Panelist Headshot
Ken Steele

Higher Education Strategist,
Eduvation

Panelist Headshot
Blessie Mathew

Director, Career Centre and Experiential Learning,
University of Alberta

Panelist Headshot
Sarah Wells

Olympian,
Believe Initiative

Speakers List

(Additional presenters will be added soon.)

Panelist Headshot
Jeannette Miron

Registrar and Senior Director Student Success,
Canadore College

Panelist Headshot
Nina Bilimoria Angelo

Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer,
Unibuddy

Panelist Headshot
Nick Valentino

Program Manager, Student Success Initiatives,
York University

Panelist Headshot
Richard Mitchell

Manager of Access and Inclusion, Undergraduate Admission and Recruitment,
Queen's University

Panelist Headshot
John F. Albanese

Dean of Enrollment,
Glasgow Caledonian New York College

Panelist Headshot
Angi Roberts

Assistant Registrar, Marketing and Communications,
University of Guelph

Panelist Headshot
Shawn Chorney

Vice President Strategic Infrastructure, Indigenous and Learner Services,
Canadore College

Panelist Headshot
Michelle Dittmer

President & Co-Founder,
Canadian Gap Year Association

Panelist Headshot
Ryan Snowdon

Strategic Enrolment Management Lead, Faculty of Arts and Science,
Queen's University

Panelist Headshot
Kara Eldersveld

Executive Director, Online Program Experience,
Anthology

Panelist Headshot
Graeme Collins

Assistant Manager, International Digital Marketing and Communications,
University of Guelph

Panelist Headshot
Vidur Kalive

AI Architect,
York University

Panelist Headshot
Shoshannah Bennett-Dwara

Recruitment Representative, Undergraduate Admission and Recruitment,
Queen’s University

Panelist Headshot
Bonnie Crocker

Senior SEM Consultant ,
Academica Group

Panelist Headshot
Tina Dealwis

Content Specialist,
York University

Panelist Headshot
Chiranjiv Phull

Digital Marketing Lead,
The Michener Institute of Education at UHN

Panelist Headshot
Grace Acosta

Associate Registrar,
The Michener Institute of Education at UHN

Panelist Headshot
Emma Grant

Enrolment Advisor,
Trent University

Panelist Headshot
Graham Donald

Founder & President,
Brainstorm Strategy Group

Panelist Headshot
Jennifer Powell

Director, Community Engagement,
Brainstorm Strategy Group Inc.

Panelist Headshot
David Cameron

Senior Manager of Research,
Toronto District School Board

Panelist Headshot
Kelly Gallagher-Mackay

Associate Professor, Faculty of Liberal Arts,
Wilfrid Laurier University

Panelist Headshot
Jackie Pichette

Director, Policy, Research and Partnerships,
Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario

Panelist Headshot
Andrew Klotz

Co-Founder,
Circuit Virtual Tours

Panelist Headshot
Rob Brown

Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Education,
York University

Panelist Headshot
Rupaali Kumar

Recruitment Officer, Campus Visitors and Community Outreach,
Brock University

Panelist Headshot
Suzie Addison Toor

Director, Social Innovation and Student Success,
Georgian College

Panelist Headshot
Daniel Deschenes

Customer Success Lead,
Circuit Virtual Tours

Panelist Headshot
Sohrab Rahmaty

Lead Researcher and Writer,
OCAS

Panelist Headshot
Dr. Chris Busch

Associate Vice President, Enrolment Management,
University of Windsor

Panelist Headshot
Nicholas Shalagan

Associate Director, Accelerated MBA, Recruitment and Admissions,
Ivey School of Business, Western University

Panelist Headshot
Sanchit Mittal

Strategic Partnerships Manager,
ApplyBoard

Panelist Headshot
Hannah Dang

Senior Director, Partner Relations,
ApplyBoard

Panelist Headshot
Sarah Wells

Olympian,
Believe Initiative

Panelist Headshot
Dr. Michelle Riconscente

Chief Strategy and Operating Officer ,
Motimatic

Panelist Headshot
Aida Osmonva

Regional Development Manager,
Pearson PTE

Conference Program

(Additional Presentations TBA)

Day 1 - Pre-Conference Workshops (additional fee and registration required)

Mon, Oct 24

Registration Desk Open

Time Icon1:00 - 1:30

Drop the Megaphone: Tools & Techniques for Omnichannel, Multilateral Communication

Time Icon1:30 - 4:30

Prospective students, applicants, enrolled students and influencers are all awash in a flood of traditional and non-traditional education options, and they are all inundated by...

Prospective students, applicants, enrolled students and influencers are all awash in a flood of traditional and non-traditional education options, and they are all inundated by a torrent of advertising, recruitment and reminder messages, in print, outdoor, mass media, websites, social apps, and search results. Time is precious, attention is scarce, and patience for the traditional “firehose” of outbound communication has worn thin – at every stage of enrolment. What’s more, expectations have skyrocketed for personalized, interactive, on-demand information – in multiple channels – in response to natural language questions.

Across industry sectors, the worlds of web, social, phone and face-to-face sales, marketing and support are rapidly converging. In response, higher ed institutions have been deploying teams of social media, telephone and outreach ambassadors to engage current and potential students in two-way conversations. They’ve also been investing in sophisticated technologies to maintain contact databases, automate follow-up and communication touchpoints, predict applicant decisions and student needs, and provide 24/7 personalized answers, advice and guidance.

Many smaller institutions have focused on “high-touch” strategies to grow applications, improve conversion and heighten retention, by doubling down on personal attention, student ambassadors, in-person events, active social channels and carefully crafted communications. Larger institutions have deployed high-tech tools to transform marketing, recruitment and success initiatives at scale, including CRMs, AI chatbots, predictive analytics, virtual community platforms and personalized adaptive technologies.

Whether your preferred approach is high-touch or high-tech, and whether you work in marketing, recruitment, enrolment or student success, the goal of communication should be the same: engaging your stakeholders in responsive dialogue, delivering the information they want, in the way they want, at the time they want, and ultimately building a vibrant community based on affinity and multilateral interactions.

In this 3-hour interactive workshop, marketing strategist Ken Steele will outline the fundamentals of bidirectional communication and multilateral community-building, share world-class examples for PSE marketing, recruitment, conversion and retention, and prompt participants to share their own experiences and insights. You’ll have the opportunity to reflect on your current strengths and weaknesses, and come away with plenty of food for thought and bright ideas to consider.

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Ken Steele headshot

Ken Steele

Higher Education Strategist, Eduvation

Ken Steele is Canada’s best-known higher ed futurist, facilitator and consultant in branding, marketing and innovation. As a former Shakespeare scholar and instructor, technology consultant, marketer and entrepreneur, Ken brings a unique, wide-ranging perspective and divergent thinking to college and university strategic planning, marketing and enrolment management.

Worldwide, more than 30,000 higher ed professionals have come to know Ken as a definitive source of breaking news, bright ideas, strategic foresight, and thoughtful insight. He co-founded Canada’s largest PSE market research firm, created a leading daily news digest, and has written dozens of articles and white papers, and hundreds of research reports and environmental scans.

Ken monitors worldwide developments shaping the future of higher education in real time, writes a free daily newsletter (the Eduvation Insider), produces a video webcast (Ten with Ken), and convenes national roundtables of higher ed marketers. He sits on eCampus Ontario’s Virtual Learning Advisory Committee, and has consulted with hundreds of colleges and universities – from New England to New Zealand – helping them interpret market research, understand their competitive context, distil their institutional “Brand Chemistry,” and nurture a culture of innovation across campus.

If you haven’t heard Ken speak before, take a look at his introduction video here.

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Integrating DEI Into Your Daily Actions & Larger Initiatives

Time Icon1:30 - 4:30

You’ve heard, read, and learned a lot about diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) recently. But do you feel confident and equipped to implement DEI in your daily work? Do...

You’ve heard, read, and learned a lot about diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) recently. But do you feel confident and equipped to implement DEI in your daily work? Do you know how to effectively integrate DEI in your projects and practices?

For diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives to be successful they require organizational and individual commitment, cultural change, and time. DEI is a process, not a destination and evidence shows that workplaces that genuinely embrace DEI foster increased productivity and innovation as well as higher levels of meaningful engagement by employees and stakeholders.

To this end, most post-secondary institutions have invested in DEI training and education over the past few years. We have learned about unconscious bias, discrimination, microaggressions, intersectionality, and a whole host of ‘isms.’ Now we are at the point where we need to purposefully integrate this knowledge into the daily actions that form our work. Each individual in an organization has a responsibility in moving the needle forward on cultural change.

In the first half of this 3-hour interactive workshop, you will learn how to practice inclusive leadership regardless of whether you are in a formal leadership role. Inclusive leaders at all levels of an organization are the catalyst to sustainable change. In the second half of this workshop, you will learn how to apply a framework to create and review policies, programs, services, and practices using a DEI lens. Using this framework, you will be able to ensure the work you produce is culturally relevant, considers a wide range of perspectives, and is fundamentally based on justice and inclusion.

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Blessie Mathew headshot

Blessie Mathew

Director, Career Centre and Experiential Learning, University of Alberta

As Director of the University of Alberta Career Centre and Experiential Learning Blessie Mathew’s portfolio also includes the Undergraduate Research Initiative (URI), and Women in Scholarship, Engineering, Science, and Technology (WISEST). Each unit connects broadly in their goal to support students, postdoctoral scholars, and alumni in engaging in career development and experiential learning activities that help them build the skills, knowledge, experience, and connections they need to progress in their careers resourcefully, and with hope and resilience. With over 25 years of experience in student affairs and DEI work, Blessie is committed to and engaged in the daily work of equity, diversity, and inclusion--if any one of us is oppressed it means all of us are oppressed.

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Day 1 - Conference Opening (included in conference registration)

Mon, Oct 24

Registration Desk Open

Time Icon4:30 - 5:30

Opening Reception & Light Dinner

Time Icon5:30 - 8:30

Start off your conference experience right with this opportunity to meet and share with peers from across Canada while enjoying drinks and a light dinner.

Day 2

Tues, Oct 25

Registration & Networking Breakfast

Time Icon7:30 - 8:30

Welcome & Opening Remarks

Time Icon8:30 - 9:00
Graham Donald headshot

Graham Donald

Founder & President, Brainstorm Strategy Group

Graham Donald is one of North America’s leading experts on attracting, recruiting, and engaging students and graduates.

He founded Brainstorm Strategy Group Inc. in 2003 to focus on improving students’ school-to-work transition by advising and training both the employers that hire students and the educators who support their career development on campus.

His clients have included KPMG, PwC, University of Toronto, Deloitte, GE, McGill University, HSBC, UBC, Rutgers University, Kraft, and many others.

He chairs several conferences annually including the Campus Recruiting Forums in cities across Canada and the USA; the Canadian Career Development Summit; and, the Strategic Enrolment Marketing & Management Forum. He also speaks regularly at conferences across the US and Canada.

Graham Donald is a firm believer in the value of a general arts education and makes use every day of the skills he developed pursuing a double-major in English and Literary Studies. He received both his BA and MBA from the University of Toronto.

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Keynote Presentation

Surfing the Waves of Change: New Opportunities Emerging from Turbulence

Time Icon9:00 - 10:00

In turbulent times, visionary leaders and their committed crews recognize the winds of change, reset their sails and change course as necessary. The past few years have...

In turbulent times, visionary leaders and their committed crews recognize the winds of change, reset their sails and change course as necessary. The past few years have disrupted our work, study, family and social lives, magnified pre-existing inequities and vulnerabilities, and accelerated the evolution of technological change. Labour market shifts and automation are driving continuous innovation in our programs. Our students’ diverse hardships and challenges have prompted more flexible policies and procedures, more intense student coaching, bridging and onboarding programs, and more extensive service hours and channels. Instructors and students alike have come to value new pedagogies, technologies and resources, while also appreciating the unique affordances of gathering face-to-face on campus. The pandemic has ushered in an era of unprecedented uncertainty, and a more fluid future for higher ed that will blend disciplines, drive more flexible services and credentials, and blur the lines between online and on-campus, learning and work, virtual and reality.

Despite the challenges of chaos, times of turbulence and crisis are also moments of opportunity for nimble institutions and departments to regroup, rethink our strategies and markets, and refocus our resources. In this dynamic session, higher ed futurist Ken Steele will attempt to still some of the current chaos, provide a long-range view toward the horizon, and help us appreciate some emerging opportunities for enrolment and marketing professionals.

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Ken Steele headshot

Ken Steele

Higher Education Strategist, Eduvation

Ken Steele is Canada’s best-known higher ed futurist, facilitator and consultant in branding, marketing and innovation. As a former Shakespeare scholar and instructor, technology consultant, marketer and entrepreneur, Ken brings a unique, wide-ranging perspective and divergent thinking to college and university strategic planning, marketing and enrolment management.

Worldwide, more than 30,000 higher ed professionals have come to know Ken as a definitive source of breaking news, bright ideas, strategic foresight, and thoughtful insight. He co-founded Canada’s largest PSE market research firm, created a leading daily news digest, and has written dozens of articles and white papers, and hundreds of research reports and environmental scans.

Ken monitors worldwide developments shaping the future of higher education in real time, writes a free daily newsletter (the Eduvation Insider), produces a video webcast (Ten with Ken), and convenes national roundtables of higher ed marketers. He sits on eCampus Ontario’s Virtual Learning Advisory Committee, and has consulted with hundreds of colleges and universities – from New England to New Zealand – helping them interpret market research, understand their competitive context, distil their institutional “Brand Chemistry,” and nurture a culture of innovation across campus.

If you haven’t heard Ken speak before, take a look at his introduction video here.

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Networking & Refreshment Break

Time Icon10:00 - 10:15
Concurrent Sessions

Thank You for Being a Friend: How York’s AI Tool Helped Students Thrive Through the Pandemic and Back to Campus

Time Icon10:15 - 11:15

When York University launched SAVY, its AI-driven student virtual assistant in January 2020, they couldn't predict that just two months later, the COVID-19 pandemic would...

When York University launched SAVY, its AI-driven student virtual assistant in January 2020, they couldn't predict that just two months later, the COVID-19 pandemic would disrupt in-person education and impact students.

With students learning remotely, SAVY quickly became a key support, providing access to 24/7 help throughout the pandemic. In this session, attendees will learn how SAVY quickly pivoted to become a resource for COVID-19 information, provide mental health support, and be a friend and guide for students – and how SAVY is equally supporting students as they return to campus.

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Vidur Kalive headshot

Vidur Kalive

AI Architect, York University

Vidur Kalive is the Artificial Intelligence Architecture Lead at York University, with responsibility for multiple projects that are aimed at integrating AI and Machine Learning into different aspects of the student experience at the university, including SAVY, York University's Student Virtual Assistant. Vidur has a Bachelor's degree in Engineering and a Master's degree in Business. He has over 5 years' of experience working in the higher education sector. In his previous role, Vidur worked with Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia, where among other things, he helped develop Deakin's AI student virtual assistant using IBM Watson, which at the time was the first implementation of its kind anywhere in the world.

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Nick Valentino headshot

Nick Valentino

Program Manager, Student Success Initiatives, York University

Nick is currently responsible for the success of SAVY AI – York University's student virtual assistant, with capabilities to navigate York students to resources for academic success, health and wellness, student life, campus services and career development. He brings to this role almost 25 years of experience in marketing, communications, web and application development, and project management. Nick has also led York University's Division of Students' choices of CMS, CRM, and email management solutions and the creation of communications strategies and online protocols. He now spends his time finding ways to leverage technology to aid in student success.

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Tina Dealwis headshot

Tina Dealwis

Content Specialist, York University

Tina Dealwis, MA, is a Content Specialist on the Vice-Provost, Students – Communications and Marketing team at York University. Tina has worked in higher education for the past six years. At York University, she acts as the voice of SAVY, York’s student virtual assistant – where she helps to create a positive student user experience through writing impactful chatbot content. The content acts as a first line of contact for students’ inquiries and aligns with SAVY’s personality and tone and voice. She also leads focus groups with students that help inform future content. She previously worked at the University of Guelph-Humber as a Web Content Writer, and at Sheridan College as a Digital Communications Officer and Copy and Content Writer. Tina obtained a Master of Arts in Professional Communication from Royal Roads University, and a Bachelor of Applied Arts in Journalism from Ryerson University.

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Concurrent Sessions

Welcoming Indigenous Students: Application to Admission

Time Icon10:15 - 11:15

Recruiting Indigenous applicants to Post-Secondary institutions is a focus of many Universities and Colleges in Canada. However, for many institutions there is a gap of...

Recruiting Indigenous applicants to Post-Secondary institutions is a focus of many Universities and Colleges in Canada. However, for many institutions there is a gap of understanding on how to reach Indigenous applicants. Increasingly, global challenges from COVID 19 have impacted Post-Secondary Education in every facet; recruitment practices and efforts have not been immune to these challenges. Post-Secondary institutions are having to embrace that colonial methods and practices of recruitment do not work for Indigenous communities. New and alternative ways of reaching and attracting Indigenous students must be a priority. In these challenging times, relational recruitment strategies are necessary to attract Indigenous students. The conundrum for Post-Secondary institutions is knowing how to recruit Indigenous students.

This presentation will be in a circle format where participants will discuss and unpack their understandings of how Indigenous student recruitment could look like in a post-secondary setting.

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Angela Wolfe headshot

Angela Wolfe

Director, Indigenous Student Recruitment, Simon Fraser University

Angela Wolfe, is a nehiew iskwew (Cree woman) from the Ermineskin Cree First Nation, located in Maskwacis Alberta. She has dedicated her academic career to creating pathways for Indigenous students to reach their goals and dreams in post-secondary education.

Angela has 20+ years of higher education experience working at both UBC and the University of Alberta (U of A). She is known for her special gift of developing relationships with students, faculty, and community, and her teachings on the importance of respecting cultural identities and walking alongside one another.

Angela’s expertise is in post-secondary education, and she has specialized in teacher education. Her professional philosophy is rooted in practicing Wahkohtowin (relational interconnectedness) by sharing Indigenous knowledges and ways of being to enrich the learning journeys for all students in post-secondary education.

Currently, Angela is the Director, Indigenous Recruitment and Admissions at Simon Fraser University (SFU) in Burnaby, BC. Angela’s foundation at SFU is to support initiatives that invite Indigenous students to SFU and to assist in lifting supports for Indigenous students that call SFU their educational home. Before joining SFU, Angela was the Director of Indigenous Education at UBC providing leadership in the recruitment and retention of Indigenous students to new pathways, and for community-based cohorts in the NITEP program. She also taught two of the foundational Indigenous education courses of the program.

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Networking & Refreshment Break

Time Icon11:15 - 11:30
Concurrent Sessions

Top 12 Tactics Schools Are Using To Get Next-Level Results From Virtual Tours

Time Icon10:15 -11:15

Over 30% of students depend on virtual tours today*, and schools are hanging on to this high impact, low maintenance digital "multitool" as recruitment shifts back to...

Over 30% of students depend on virtual tours today*, and schools are hanging on to this high impact, low maintenance digital "multitool" as recruitment shifts back to in-person. We've gathered 12 best practices currently being used across the enrolment journey that schools have put in place to take their virtual tours even further than you would expect. Find out how you can set up your virtual tour for success in the world of hybrid recruitment.

You'll learn 12 different techniques being used by institutions to leverage their virtual tours, organized into 3 stages of the decision process:

  • Improve awareness and consideration
  • Enhance conversion
  • Assist incoming student onboarding and support their transition to post-secondary

You'll learn how to set up, promote, and measure these innovative tactics, and get even more value out of a key applicant resource.

*Source: 2021 University/College Applicant Survey by Academica Group

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Andrew Klotz headshot

Andrew Klotz

Co-Founder, Circuit Virtual Tours

Andrew is the Co-Founder and CEO of Circuit Virtual Tours, a virtual visit platform that supercharges recruitment outcomes. He leads a team to craft experiences that showcase the best aspects of colleges and universities. The best part of his job is working with institutions to identify new ways that Circuit can support current and future students as they transition to post-secondary.

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Rupaali Kumar headshot

Rupaali Kumar

Recruitment Officer, Campus Visitors and Community Outreach, Brock University

Rupaali Kumar is the Recruitment Officer focused on Campus Visitors and Community Outreach at Brock University. In this capacity, Rupaali oversees the campus tour program (both in-person and virtual) and organizes community outreach opportunities that allow students to engage with Brock in unique ways. Rupaali is a graduate of Brock University’s Concurrent Education program and has spent some time teaching high school in the GTA before returning to Student Recruitment at Brock. Rupaali brings experiences and insight from her teaching career to facilitate meaningful interactions between Brock University and prospective students.

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Daniel Deschenes headshot

Daniel Deschenes

Customer Success Lead, Circuit Virtual Tours

In this role, Daniel supports customers with their virtual tour project, from planning to launch, and expansion and optimization as they build immersive virtual tours to engage their prospective students. Prior to joining Circuit Virtual Tours, Daniel worked in Student Recruitment at Brock University, leading the campus tour and student ambassador program. With a depth of experience in post-secondary student recruitment, Daniel is a valuable resource to customers as they customize their virtual tour to meet the growing wants and needs of prospective and current students.

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Concurrent Sessions

From A to Gen Z: What Students Really Want

Time Icon11:30 - 12:30

Enrolment marketers face competing demands and an ever-changing landscape. But the chief concern that guides their decision-making is understanding the thoughts and feelings of...

Enrolment marketers face competing demands and an ever-changing landscape. But the chief concern that guides their decision-making is understanding the thoughts and feelings of this unique generation of students. Gen Z surveys are ten a penny - but there are two fundamental problems with them. First, they aren't tailored to the higher education experience. The way Gen Z interacts with brands is interesting, but it's not representative of their journey to one of the most important decisions of their life so far. And second, surveys don't accurately capture the true feelings and thoughts of respondents. Unibuddy's chat technology uniquely positions us to offer a window of insight into students' true sentiments about the higher education decision process.

In this session, we’ll share our machine learning-powered analysis from over 12 million messages from prospective students sent to universities around the world about their worries, expectations and aspirations. We’ll also share success stories from our 500+ university partners to illustrate what all of this means for institutions like Trent University. Unibuddy’s Chief Marketing & Strategy Officer Nina Bilimoria Angelo will co-present with Trent's Enrolment Advisor, Emma Grant.

Emma will highlight the benefits of digital interaction to prioritize the preferences of today’s student pool and simultaneously lessen your team's workload.

The session will be co-delivered by Nina Bilimoria Angelo, Chief Marketing & Strategy Officer at Unibuddy. A seasoned higher education expert, Nina has held leadership positions at education companies including Top Hat and Pearson.

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Nina Bilimoria Angelo headshot

Nina Bilimoria Angelo

Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer, Unibuddy

Nina Bilimoria Angelo is Unibuddy's Toronto based Chief Marketing and Strategy Officer. In this capacity, Angelo will support the global expansion of Unibuddy's unique peer-to-peer platform that allows institutions to help students make crucial decisions about where to go to school, what to major in, and how to make the most of their higher ed experience. Prior to joining Unibuddy, Angelo led teams at Top Hat, Pearson and HP and advised Fortune 500 companies as a management consultant. A seasoned higher ed leader, Angelo specializes in strategy creation, product conceptualization and testing, positioning and messaging, brand advocacy, and generally bringing order to chaos. "At such a critical time in higher ed's evolution, students need peer support now more than ever," Angelo says. "I am thrilled to contribute to the growing success of Unibuddy, where I believe we are helping improve educational return-on-investment for all students."

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Emma Grant headshot

Emma Grant

Enrolment Advisor, Trent University

Emma is an Enrolment Advisor at Trent University managing Student Ambassadors and Campus Tours. She graduated from Trent in 2021 with a degree in Psychology and Teacher Education. Emma is very passionate about equitable education and fostering communities amongst students.

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Concurrent Sessions

Write Emails That Students (or Anyone) Will Read…or Why Bother?

Time Icon11:30 - 12:30

How many emails do you write in a day? How many do you read? And do you really read every single one of them, word for word?

My guess is no. So then put yourself in...

How many emails do you write in a day? How many do you read? And do you really read every single one of them, word for word?

My guess is no. So then put yourself in a student's shoes: at the height of student recruitment/admission/conversion, how many emails fill their inbox? We already know the adage, "students don't read". But why? Because we aren't writing with them in mind. We're writing with us, our objectives, our daily tasks, our institutional goals in mind. Let's spend a bit of time learning why students don't read your emails and a lot of time learning how to change that. We'll use a method I call FIB: F-pattern meets Inverted Pyramid meets BuzzFeed. Using this method, we experienced an email open rate that was 44% higher than the industry standard! Join me to find out why!

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Angi Roberts

Assistant Registrar, Marketing and Communications, University of Guelph

Angi is an accomplished communications professional with 20+ years of experience in higher education, focusing on marketing and communications using traditional and digital media, brand development, and storytelling. She is a mom of two, a pastel and watercolour artist, the queen of list-making and pie-baking. She's a dog mom of two labs, she loves the outdoors, and she loves a good hot dog. She considers herself an expert loader of dishwashers (although, her husband will disagree), and despite her skills in digital communications, she is very particular about her pens. She was around when email became a 'thing'.

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Graeme Collins

Assistant Manager, International Digital Marketing and Communications, University of Guelph

Specializing in analytics, content creation and website maintenance, Graeme is highly skilled in developing and executing communications and marketing strategies that increase brand awareness, engagement and trust.

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Concurrent Sessions

The Impact of School Closures and Emergency Remote Learning on Postsecondary Transitions

Time Icon11:30 - 12:30

School closures and educational disruption associated with the COVID-19 epidemic have raised significant concerns about the impact on high school student learning and pathways...

School closures and educational disruption associated with the COVID-19 epidemic have raised significant concerns about the impact on high school student learning and pathways into post-secondary. This presentation will summarize HEQCO-supported research which draws on data from the Toronto District School Board (the largest school board in Canada) to look at student high school achievement and transitions to post-secondary during the first few school years affected by COVID-19. It will explore how grades, graduation and postsecondary applications/confirmations vary across three cohorts of approximately 50,000 students – including one pre-pandemic cohort.

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David Cameron

Senior Manager of Research, Toronto District School Board

David Cameron is the Senior Manager of the Research and Development Department in the Toronto District School Board. He is an educator and education policy sociologist with research interests inschool change and the interrelationship between educational policy intentions or design and peoples’ experiences within policy frameworks. David has twenty years of experience working in the school systems of Ontario, the US, and the UK. Most recently, David worked as a Director of Research for People for Education, a non-governmental organization think tank that advocates for public education. David believes that societal health and human rights depend on an enriched and vibrant public education system.

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Kelly Gallagher-Mackay

Associate Professor, Faculty of Liberal Arts, Wilfrid Laurier University

Kelly Gallagher-Mackay is an Associate Professor of Law and Society at Wilfrid Laurier University. Her major research interest is systemic discrimination and educational inequalities. Past roles include Research Director at the Future Skills Centre and at People for Education, and Northern Director of Akitsiraq Law school in Nunavut. Her 2 kids are on either side of postsecondary transitions.

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Rob Brown headshot

Rob Brown

Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Education, York University

Robert S. Brown retired from the Toronto District School Board's Research and Development department in 2019, following thirty-five years in applied research. He is Adjunct Professor at York University, in the Faculty of Education and in Critical Disability Studies. He has authored or co-authored works in a number of fields including education, psychology, sociology, medicine, and economics.

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Networking Lunch

Time Icon12:30 - 1:30
Concurrent Sessions

Interactive Demo: Build a Virtual Campus Tour that Engages Future Students

Time Icon1:30 - 1:50

Curious what it takes to create a top-notch virtual campus tour? Join the interactive demo and see how Circuit empowers creators with easy-to-use tools for crafting a highly...

Curious what it takes to create a top-notch virtual campus tour? Join the interactive demo and see how Circuit empowers creators with easy-to-use tools for crafting a highly engaging virtual campus tour.

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Daniel Deschenes

Customer Success Lead, Circuit Virtual Tours

In this role, Daniel supports customers with their virtual tour project, from planning to launch, and expansion and optimization as they build immersive virtual tours to engage their prospective students. Prior to joining Circuit Virtual Tours, Daniel worked in Student Recruitment at Brock University, leading the campus tour and student ambassador program. With a depth of experience in post-secondary student recruitment, Daniel is a valuable resource to customers as they customize their virtual tour to meet the growing wants and needs of prospective and current students.

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Andrew Klotz

Co-Founder, Circuit Virtual Tours

Andrew is the Co-Founder and CEO of Circuit Virtual Tours, a virtual visit platform that supercharges recruitment outcomes. He leads a team to craft experiences that showcase the best aspects of colleges and universities. The best part of his job is working with institutions to identify new ways that Circuit can support current and future students as they transition to post-secondary.

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Concurrent Sessions

How to Reach, Motivate & Convert your Students: Motimatic Shares Practical Insights to Improve Spring Registration

Time Icon1:30 - 1:50

When we change how students think about higher ed, they start to act differently—and achieve success at critical moments in their educational journey. Today, colleges and...

When we change how students think about higher ed, they start to act differently—and achieve success at critical moments in their educational journey. Today, colleges and universities around the world are leveraging Motimatic’s proven behavioral science and digital marketing expertise to drive immediate, measurable improvements in student enrollment and registration. Join our session to hear Motimatic’s Chief Strategy and Operating Officer – and former USC education professor – Dr. Michelle Riconscente, share new insights on how to engage, even your hard-to-reach students or on-the-fence admits. Whether you’re using email, texting, calls or social media to reach prospects and students, Dr. Riconscente will walk you through practical and easy-to-apply ways to benefit from behavioral science in your own work. The session will also feature perspectives from your AACRAO peers who partnered with Motimatic to increase registration and improve enrollment.

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Dr. Michelle Riconscente headshot

Dr. Michelle Riconscente

Chief Strategy and Operating Officer , Motimatic

Concurrent Sessions

Surf Camp 101: Rad Skills for a Fluid Future

Time Icon2:00 - 3:00

This interactive workshop picks up where Ken Steele’s “Surfing the Waves of Change” keynote left off, considering the implications of turbulent times and the emerging...

This interactive workshop picks up where Ken Steele’s “Surfing the Waves of Change” keynote left off, considering the implications of turbulent times and the emerging opportunities for enrolment, marketing and student services. But we’ll also wade into the fundamentals of nurturing entrepreneurial thinking and an innovation mindset – for yourself, your team, and the broader campus community – so that you can surf the crests and curls with confidence, leveraging the awesome currents of change without getting “wiped out.”

To identify and pursue the most “righteous” opportunities, you’ll inevitably have to overcome long standing traditions of academic risk-aversion and hypercriticism, fierce competition for limited resources, and deep-rooted anxieties about “rocking the boat.” But the world’s most innovative organizations bring diverse perspectives to bear, unlock the creativity and drive of entrepreneurial thinkers, provide them with resources and time to experiment, and foster a climate of trust, curiosity and adventure where bold new ideas can bubble to the top and truly flourish.

With a bit of effort, talent, and luck, you’ll leave this session better prepared to “hang ten” with the best of them, using some actionable techniques to contribute to a more nimble and entrepreneurial institution.

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Ken Steele

Higher Education Strategist, Eduvation

Ken Steele is Canada’s best-known higher ed futurist, facilitator and consultant in branding, marketing and innovation. As a former Shakespeare scholar and instructor, technology consultant, marketer and entrepreneur, Ken brings a unique, wide-ranging perspective and divergent thinking to college and university strategic planning, marketing and enrolment management.

Worldwide, more than 30,000 higher ed professionals have come to know Ken as a definitive source of breaking news, bright ideas, strategic foresight, and thoughtful insight. He co-founded Canada’s largest PSE market research firm, created a leading daily news digest, and has written dozens of articles and white papers, and hundreds of research reports and environmental scans.

Ken monitors worldwide developments shaping the future of higher education in real time, writes a free daily newsletter (the Eduvation Insider), produces a video webcast (Ten with Ken), and convenes national roundtables of higher ed marketers. He sits on eCampus Ontario’s Virtual Learning Advisory Committee, and has consulted with hundreds of colleges and universities – from New England to New Zealand – helping them interpret market research, understand their competitive context, distil their institutional “Brand Chemistry,” and nurture a culture of innovation across campus.

If you haven’t heard Ken speak before, take a look at his introduction video here.

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Concurrent Sessions

The Role of Data Integrity in the Changing Landscape of Higher Education Marketing

Time Icon2:00 - 3:00

With the world in constant state of flux, this presentation offers timely insights to help institutional marketers and higher-ed leaders hone their strategies to drive...

With the world in constant state of flux, this presentation offers timely insights to help institutional marketers and higher-ed leaders hone their strategies to drive sustained success. Join Anthology and Glasgow Caledonian New York College as we explore a wide range of trends impacting institutions' abilities to successfully navigate the highly dynamic higher-education environment including leveraging data to meet changing student expectations, trust, escalating complexity and competition. As the definition of “student success” becomes more nuanced and personalized, the growing volume of student data presents an opportunity for colleges and universities to deliver bespoke experiences, programs, and interventions for the right students, at the right time.

The importance of developing and nurturing direct relationships with students has never been more important. How institutions gather and extract insights from student data will become more critical. As institutions move from one moment of uncertainty to the next, data-driven student insights and the ability to quickly adjust strategies will be more important than ever. Institutions that can successfully operationalize rapid decision making and act on student insights will be better placed to achieve student-centric innovation and growth.

During this presentation we will discuss the following levers that should be considered as you work to build a student first ecosystem:

  • Student obsessed mentality
  • Program identification and development
  • Benefits of a first party data marketing strategy
  • Contextual, relevant, and helpful personalization at scale

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Kara Eldersveld headshot

Kara Eldersveld

Executive Director, Online Program Experience, Anthology

Kara Eldersveld specializes in developing transparent, mutually beneficial partnerships with colleges and universities that focus on prioritized growth opportunities. Every institution has a unique recipe for growth and Kara has a proven track record of assembling complex and strategic solutions that leverage expertise across academic program strategy, marketing, enrolment and course design/development. Prior to Blackboard, Kara was the Director of Marketing and Enrolment Strategy at Rice University. During her time there she worked closely with university leadership to develop a university-wide program portfolio strategy that included more than 300 non-credit and certificate programs. She also developed an in-house workflow around market research, program performance, governance, instructional design, marketing, advertising, enrolment, admissions, and student services. Prior to Rice, Kara worked as the head of strategy and accounts at two different award-winning advertising firms, serving a variety of clients, from k-12, higher-ed, non-profits, entertainment, and hospitality. Her corporate and high-education experience gives her a unique perspective around how to solve for the complexities of building a successful strategic online program portfolio from the ground up. Kara holds an B.A. from Miami University in Mass Communications.

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John F. Albanese headshot

John F. Albanese

Dean of Enrollment, Glasgow Caledonian New York College

John F. Albanese is an experienced leader in admissions, enrolment, and student affairs. He is student-centered and data-driven, with expertise in recruitment and enrolment strategy and curating the student experience. John closely follows the data and trends in the prospective student marketplace and has led enrolment growth at several universities. He is inspired by the transformative experience students achieve with the right direction and support and has focused on integrating key functional areas to optimize student success. John’s most recent roles prior to joining GCNYC include leading recruitment, enrolment, and student services for MBA and MS programs at Baruch College-City University of New York and the University of San Francisco.

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Networking & Refreshment Break

Time Icon3:00 - 3:15
Concurrent Sessions

Roundtable: What Is The Value And Role Of Student Services Within SEM Plans?

Time Icon3:15 - 4:00

SEMM Forum Roundtables provide an opportunity for an open, facilitated discussion among peers from across Canada on topics of common interest.

In this session,...

SEMM Forum Roundtables provide an opportunity for an open, facilitated discussion among peers from across Canada on topics of common interest.

In this session, participants will discuss the value of including and collaborating with student service teams in the development of post-secondary strategic enrolment management plans. What is the role of student services in your SEM efforts? What are the challenges presented and the opportunities available?

Join in the discussion, learn from your peers, and make new connections in this highly interactive session.

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Suzie Addison Toor headshot

Suzie Addison Toor

Director, Social Innovation and Student Success, Georgian College

Suzie Addison-Toor has worked for Georgian College as faculty, program coordinator, founded the Centre for Changemaking and Social Innovation and is currently the Director of Student Success and Social Innovation.

She is responsible for implementing the social innovation strategy college wide in addition to helping lead proactive changes to the college's student services portfolios and student government. Accomplishments include leveraging the concepts of flourish and thriving to build a new student success framework, leading Georgian to be the first and only Canadian college to be recognized as an Ashoka Changemaker Campus.

Prior to working at Georgian College, Suzie founded and led “Addus”, a community agency in Toronto that supports adults with developmental disabilities to lead active lives.

Suzie Addison-Toor has a Masters in Leadership from Royal Roads University. She is also a trained Executive Transition Practitioner and is part of a growing community of consultants that are supporting agencies and associations through the unique aspects of nonprofit leadership transition.

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Concurrent Sessions

Situated Recruitment: How a Social Learning Theory Can Be Used as a Guide to Improve the Quality of Applicants

Time Icon3:15 - 4:00

Learning is social and we learn by doing – of course! That’s why we are here at SEMM Forum, and this is one of the foundational concepts of Situated Cognition Theory.

...

Learning is social and we learn by doing – of course! That’s why we are here at SEMM Forum, and this is one of the foundational concepts of Situated Cognition Theory.

By the end of this session you will be able to improve the quality of your application pipeline by applying the concepts of Situated Cognition Theory to your recruitment and admissions process.

If you are reading this and thinking “What is Situated Cognition Theory?” that means you are an outsider. But don’t worry! You are also an insider and part of a community of practice that is comprised of anyone involved in attracting, recruiting, or engaging students in their post-secondary experience in Canada.

This workshop will put you on an inbound journey of understanding how situated cognition theory can be utilized to create a social learning environment that allows prospective students to demonstrate alignment to your program’s selection criteria and program outcomes.

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Nicholas Shalagan headshot

Nicholas Shalagan

Associate Director, Accelerated MBA, Recruitment and Admissions, Ivey School of Business, Western University

“Learning is social and we learn by doing” – This phrase best describes the lens that Nick uses to see the world and how he has become a leader in the recruitment and admissions of Canadian based candidates for post-graduate professional degree programs.

A love for understanding how people learn led Nick to pursue a Master’s in Education from Canisius College. Upon graduation he took on the role of Project Leader for Katimavik and managed the competency-based work-integrated learning curriculum and community engagement for the project. This experience led to the opportunity with Cuso International in Tanzania as a National Volunteer Advisor.

When Nick returned from East Africa he became the Associate Director, Institutional Relations at International Studies Abroad (ISA). This role managed the company’s Canadian operations, developed annual budgets, created business and project plans, managed domestic and international university partnerships, implemented targeted programming to recruit program specific students to post-graduate professional degree programs while managing the administrative team to ensure a high-level customer service to prospective students and university partners.

In 2017, Nick joined Western University’s Faculty of Science to oversee the recruitment and admissions of students for two post-graduate professional degree programs and is currently serving as Associate Director, Recruitment and Admissions for Ivey’s Accelerated MBA program.

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Concurrent Sessions

Finding the Right Candidates in a New Market

Time Icon3:15 - 4:00

As our labour market and digital technology evolves, post-secondary education and training institutions need to develop new programs to keep up and get ahead. In 2021, The...

As our labour market and digital technology evolves, post-secondary education and training institutions need to develop new programs to keep up and get ahead. In 2021, The Michener Institute of Education at UHN – which is unique in that it only trains the allied health professions - launched a new program in Digital Health and Data Analytics.

For many of those involved in the process, it was their first time developing and rolling out a new program. More significantly, it was the first time Michener's recruitment and digital marketing advisors were marketing a program to an unfamiliar target audience – those seeking a career related to data and AI, as opposed to healthcare providers. The Communications and Marketing and Recruitment teams at Michener worked closely together to develop a successful recruitment marketing campaign within six months of the program's development and are pleased to share their learnings. This is essentially a crash course in digital recruitment marketing that could benefit anyone with a revenue generation or awareness raising mandate but will especially benefit those in the PSE sector recruiting to new markets.

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Chiranjiv Phull headshot

Chiranjiv Phull

Digital Marketing Lead, The Michener Institute of Education at UHN

Chiranjiv is a Google-certified professional with 6+ years of experience in Digital Marketing.

In his current role as Digital Marketing Lead at The Michener Institute of Education at UHN, Chiranjiv develops in-house marketing campaigns alongside copywriters and graphic designers and manages Michener's social media channels, including Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Since starting this role three years ago, Chiranjiv has helped grow organic followers through effective content strategies and has increased enrollment in full-time and continuing education programs through paid digital marketing campaigns.

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Grace Acosta headshot

Grace Acosta

Associate Registrar, The Michener Institute of Education at UHN

Grace Acosta is an experienced strategic and systems thinker by heart and is passionate about improving the overall student experience through process improvements. Throughout her 16- year career in higher education in the Philippines, Singapore and Canada, she advocated and led numerous initiatives in registrarial services, enterprise systems and data analysis. In her current role, she pioneered the creation of an online assessment portal, the automation of grade conversion and the systematic applicant data collection and analysis. These innovations successfully re-engineered and transformed recruitment and admissions processes by leveraging data analytics and technology.

Grace currently serves in the Strategic Enrolment Management Working Group at The Michener Institute and is also a board member of Canadian Ellucian Users Group. She graduated with honours (Cum Laude) from her undergraduate degree in education and applies the fundamental pedagogical principles learned to strategic enrolment management.

In her free time, Grace is an outdoor enthusiast who loves hiking and kayaking.

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Plenary Session

20,000 Voices: Understanding the Diverse Characteristics of Today’s Students

Time Icon4:10 - 5:00

Everyone has an opinion about "students today". We seek generalizations to help us understand how to attract, recruit, and support students. And while these generalizations may...

Everyone has an opinion about "students today". We seek generalizations to help us understand how to attract, recruit, and support students. And while these generalizations may help us make decisions, invest resources, and possibly even become more effective in our work with students, they often hide a diversity of views, experiences, and interests.

Regardless of what part of the student lifecycle you are focused on, being in tune with these diverse perspectives will support the work you do as a SEMM professional.

This presentation will feature highlights of a new edition of the Brainstorm Student Interests Report focused on developing a better understanding of the interests, aspirations, and expectations of today's students. Based on an in-depth survey of more than 20,000 current Canadian university and college students in 2022, the report provides insights that will support the work of SEM leaders, marketers, recruiters, registrars, deans, student services, and other post-secondary professionals.

While providing fresh insights into the general characteristics of current students; the breadth of this research also allows us to uncover the unique attributes of students by gender, diversity group, age, major area of study and GPA. Further, we can explore the unique interests and needs of international students, graduate students, and first generation students.

Join us for the exclusive launch of the first report from this year’s research, hear some highlights, and participate in the discussion among your peers.

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Graham Donald headshot

Graham Donald

Founder & President, Brainstorm Strategy Group

Graham Donald is one of North America’s leading experts on attracting, recruiting, and engaging students and graduates.

He founded Brainstorm Strategy Group Inc. in 2003 to focus on improving students’ school-to-work transition by advising and training both the employers that hire students and the educators who support their career development on campus.

His clients have included KPMG, PwC, University of Toronto, Deloitte, GE, McGill University, HSBC, UBC, Rutgers University, Kraft, and many others.

He chairs several conferences annually including the Campus Recruiting Forums in cities across Canada and the USA; the Canadian Career Development Summit; and, the Strategic Enrolment Marketing & Management Forum. He also speaks regularly at conferences across the US and Canada.

Graham Donald is a firm believer in the value of a general arts education and makes use every day of the skills he developed pursuing a double-major in English and Literary Studies. He received both his BA and MBA from the University of Toronto.

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Networking Cocktail Reception

Time Icon5:00 - 6:00

Day 3

Weds, Oct 26

5 KM Run With Canadian Olympian, Sarah Wells

Time Icon7:00

Come one and come all! Invigorate your mind and body and expand your conference experience by running with Canadian Olympian, Sarah Wells. Gather outside the hotel lobby at...

Come one and come all! Invigorate your mind and body and expand your conference experience by running with Canadian Olympian, Sarah Wells. Gather outside the hotel lobby at 7:00 AM.

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Sarah Wells headshot

Sarah Wells

Olympian, Believe Initiative

Obstacles don't scare Sarah Wells. As an Olympic hurdler and Pan Am Games Silver medallist, Sarah has become an expert in overcoming hurdles both literally and figuratively. Founder of the Believe Initiative, Sarah has used her story to help over 125,000 people in North America understand the importance of being resilient and the power of believing in yourself. Sarah has worked with organizations such as Salesforce, Deloitte, Proctor and Gamble, Kraft-Heinz, Bell Media, and Google on how to build more resilient teams and leverage passion to activate purpose. Most recently you might recognize Sarah from Season 7 of the Amazing Race Canada where she finished as runner up, and was able to use her skills in a whole new kind of way. As someone who used to exercise for a living, she's a little bit crazy, but very passionate about making an impact. You'll want to listen up when Olympic semi-finalist and Pan Am Games silver medallist Sarah Wells takes the stage!

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Networking Breakfast

Time Icon8:00 - 8:45

Opening Remarks

Time Icon8:45 - 9:00
Jennifer Powell headshot

Jennifer Powell

Director, Community Engagement, Brainstorm Strategy Group Inc.

Jennifer Powell has 13 years of experience working in the post-secondary sector in areas that include communications, marketing, admissions, student recruitment, student services, work integrated learning, career development, event planning and stakeholder relations.

During her time at Durham College, she also was a member of the Board of Governors.

Prior to joining the sector, Jennifer worked at a national not-for-profit that represented the interests of both grocery retailers and foodservice distributors across Canada in both event planning and public policy positions.

Jennifer holds a diploma from Sir Sandford Fleming as well as post-graduate certificates obtained through Ontario Tech University and Ryerson University and a micro-credential through the Brainstorm Strategy Group Inc.

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Keynote Presentation

A Transformative Opportunity: Building Towards the Future of Post-Secondary Education

Time Icon9:00 - 10:00

We have seen incredible growth in human prosperity and possibilities over the past centuries. We have often attributed human progress to technology and, indeed, everything but...

We have seen incredible growth in human prosperity and possibilities over the past centuries. We have often attributed human progress to technology and, indeed, everything but our people – all our people. Over the past three years the pandemic shone a spotlight – and in many cases, exacerbated – economic inequities experienced by Black, Indigenous and racialized communities, people with disabilities and women. As we rebuild and recover, instead of simply reconstructing the status quo, we have an opportunity to enact transformative changes that can benefit both our economy and our society as we build towards the future.

Post-secondary institutions can play a critical role in (a) cultivating a foundation of equity, reconciliation and belonging, (b) improving access to educational opportunities, (c) addressing tremendous economic and technological turbulence, and (d) providing an environment for diverse learners to succeed. Part of our challenge is matching our stated values to our realized outcomes as we build towards the future.

Attend Dr. Gervan Fearon’s keynote address to hear about how post-secondary institutions can make meaningful inclusion part of their core community expectations, policies, practices, and strategies as well as succeed in meeting the economic and technological challenges of our times. Join this critical discussion on moving to and beyond the ROI of EDI.

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Dr. Gervan Fearon headshot

Dr. Gervan Fearon

President, George Brown College

Dr. Gervan Fearon became President of George Brown College in August 2021. Working with colleagues across the college, he aims to support career-oriented programs to meet the needs of students and the demands of employers; advance college-led research; and enhance community engagement. With a proven track record of collaboration, transformative leadership and engaging higher learning communities in a shared mission, he leads George Brown’s efforts to provide transformative education opportunities that benefit learners, industry and the greater community.

Gervan previously served as the President and Vice-Chancellor at Brock University and at Brandon University. He has also held numerous progressive roles in post-secondary education, including Vice-President, Academic, at Brandon University; Dean of the G. Raymond Chang School of Continuing Education at Ryerson University; Associate Dean at York University’s Atkinson Faculty of Liberal and Professional Studies; Visiting Scholar at the University of Washington; and as an Associate Professor at York University. Gervan also has a strong teaching and research record.

His career also included serving as the Executive Assistant to the Deputy Minister at the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and a Senior Analyst at the Treasury Board, Ontario Ministry of Finance. He has also served on numerous community boards, including Ontario Trillium Foundation, Brandon Urban Aboriginal Peoples’ Council, United Way Niagara, Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce, and the Chinese Cultural Centre of Greater Toronto. He was also Co-Chair of the Niagara Region’s Community Safety and Well-Being Planning Committee, Chair of the Budget and Audit Committee of Council of Ontario Universities, and President of Tropicana Community Services.

Gervan was a co-founder of the Canada Caribbean Institute, along with Sir Hilary Beckles, Vice-Chancellor, The University of the West Indies. Gervan is a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal (2013), The Michaëlle Jean Foundation Influencer Award (2017), The University of the West Indies Vice-Chancellor's Award (2020) and several other awards of recognition. 

He holds a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Western Ontario and received his master’s and bachelor’s of science degrees in agricultural economics from the University of Guelph. He holds a Chartered Professional Accountant designation (CPA, CGA) and Institute of Corporate Directors designation (ICD.D).

On May 24, 2021, Gervan gave an interview to CBC Radio's Metro Morning Toronto. Interview transcript.

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Networking & Refreshment Break

Time Icon10:00 - 10:15
Concurrent Sessions

Roundtable: Ensuring Optimal International Student Enrolment in SEM Plans

Time Icon10:15 - 11:15

SEMM Forum Roundtables provide an opportunity for an open, facilitated discussion among peers from across Canada on topics of common interest.

In this session,...

SEMM Forum Roundtables provide an opportunity for an open, facilitated discussion among peers from across Canada on topics of common interest.

In this session, participants will discuss how institutions ensure optimal international enrolment by providing that they can effectively recruit, enrol, and graduate international students while increasing the probability that those graduates will become alumni with strong connections to the school. Are institutions prioritizing international students in their SEM planning? How are others addressing this challenge?

Join in the discussion, learn from your peers, and make new connections in this highly interactive session.

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Dr. Chris Busch headshot

Dr. Chris Busch

Associate Vice President, Enrolment Management, University of Windsor

Dr. Busch is the University of Windsor’s Associate Vice-President, Enrolment and Senior International Officer. He is responsible for leading the institution’s enrolment and internationalization activities in collaboration with other senior institutional leaders. His scholarship focuses on the role organizational culture has on internationalization, or the process of integrating an international, intercultural or global dimension into higher education.

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Concurrent Sessions

Making Sense of the Numbers: Using Data to Guide your Enrolment Planning

Time Icon10:15 - 11:15

Data-driven decision-making is the standard in enrolment planning today. Now that you have collected your institutional data, which data should drive your process, how...

Data-driven decision-making is the standard in enrolment planning today. Now that you have collected your institutional data, which data should drive your process, how can you apply it to your planning, and how does this all fit within the larger theory of strategic enrolment management? Join Academica Senior SEM Consultant Bonnie Crocker and Grace Acosta from The Michener Institute of Education at UHN for a discussion of how you can turn this year’s data and numbers into next year’s enrolment strategy.

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Bonnie Crocker headshot

Bonnie Crocker

Senior SEM Consultant , Academica Group

Bonnie has over 30 years of experience in the postsecondary sector, including 15 years at McMaster University in recruitment and admissions and more than 10 years as Registrar at Huron University College. During her time at Huron, Bonnie assumed the responsibilities for institutional assessment and planning, and was promoted to the position of Registrar and Executive Director Institutional Research and Planning. In her more than five years with Academica Group, Bonnie has successfully led several SEM Planning and SEM-associated projects. Bonnie completed her Master’s in Enrolment Management in 2013 and is currently working toward her doctoral degree in Performance Improvement Leadership for Higher Education.

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Grace Acosta headshot

Grace Acosta

Associate Registrar, The Michener Institute of Education at UHN

Grace Acosta is an experienced strategic and systems thinker by heart and is passionate about improving the overall student experience through process improvements. Throughout her 16- year career in higher education in the Philippines, Singapore and Canada, she advocated and led numerous initiatives in registrarial services, enterprise systems and data analysis. In her current role, she pioneered the creation of an online assessment portal, the automation of grade conversion and the systematic applicant data collection and analysis. These innovations successfully re-engineered and transformed recruitment and admissions processes by leveraging data analytics and technology.

Grace currently serves in the Strategic Enrolment Management Working Group at The Michener Institute and is also a board member of Canadian Ellucian Users Group. She graduated with honours (Cum Laude) from her undergraduate degree in education and applies the fundamental pedagogical principles learned to strategic enrolment management.

In her free time, Grace is an outdoor enthusiast who loves hiking and kayaking.

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Concurrent Sessions

Additional Session TBA

Time Icon10:15 - 11:15
Concurrent Sessions

Digital Tools and Data Insights to Improve International Enrolment Forecasting and Conversion

Time Icon11:30 - 12:30

Canadian higher education institutions are under increasing pressure to apply a strategic enrolment management approach to international recruitment in order to meet a variety...

Canadian higher education institutions are under increasing pressure to apply a strategic enrolment management approach to international recruitment in order to meet a variety of different goals including higher conversion rates, nationality diversification and targeting recruitment efforts for undersubscribed programs. In order to make the best possible decisions to achieve these goals, institutions need to have accurate and understandable data relevant to their target markets and the decision factors their students consider when deciding where and what to study. Using data available at any institution's admission and recruitment offices, combined with insights from IRCC-reported study permit trends, we will demonstrate how institutions can strategically plan enrollment forecasting and improve conversions.

Particular attention will be paid to how the Knowledge Pyramid model (moving from Data to Information to Knowledge to Wisdom) can be applied to develop a successful international recruitment strategy. A fifteen-minute Q&A session will further enable us to share lessons learned from our experiences.

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Sanchit Mittal

Strategic Partnerships Manager, ApplyBoard

Sanchit (he/his) came to Canada as an International Student. He holds two Master's degrees and has diverse experience working with International Students and various marginalized communities (including LGBTQ2S+ & refugees). Sanchit is passionate about Data-driven approaches to International Student Recruitment, helping Canadian institutions to improve their students' experiences and lessen the risk of over-reliance on one or two major source countries for student recruitment. Prior to ApplyBoard, Sanchit worked with Vancouver Island University in the International Student Services as well as International Student Recruitment teams. Residing in the traditional territories of the Huron-Wendat, the Seneca, and the Mississaugas of the Credit peoples, Sanchit is passionate about Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) and Truth & Reconciliation work, and is an advocate for Social Justice. Outside his day job, Sanchit is an Anti-Racism Response Training Facilitator and has worked with various public and private organizations across Canada, including notable Post-secondary and secondary educational institutions.

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Hannah Dang

Senior Director, Partner Relations, ApplyBoard

Hannah Dang is the Senior Director - Partner Relations at ApplyBoard, where she leads their Canadian and Australian Portfolio of Universities, Colleges and K-12 Institutional Partners. Hannah and her team have successfully established partnerships with over 450 institutions across the sectors. ApplyBoard is now the largest AI-powered platform for international student search, recruitment and admission.

Hannah has spent the last 12 years in various leadership roles within the Canadian International Education sector. Along with her experience, Hannah was responsible for driving high growth in student recruitments, managing student placements portfolios, and building successful public-private partnerships. Hannah is a true believer in the positive impact of student mobility and she is passionate about making a difference in the world through education. She has worked alongside senior industry leaders and government stakeholders on new business development and strategic planning to support Canadian Institutions.

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Networking & Refreshment Break

Time Icon11:15 - 11:30
Concurrent Sessions

Lost Sheep or Wise Owls? What is Really Happening When Students Take a Break?

Time Icon11:30 - 12:30
STUDENT PANEL: Come learn from current and past students who have chosen to temporarily withdraw or take a gap year. Sharing their stories will help you understand why they choose...
STUDENT PANEL: Come learn from current and past students who have chosen to temporarily withdraw or take a gap year. Sharing their stories will help you understand why they choose to take breaks, what encourages them to return and how higher ed can better support them. Students take breaks after high school and between years of study for a variety of reasons but how can colleges and universities recruit and retain these students? Larger data and trends will also be shared. Q&A opportunities with these students.

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Michelle Dittmer

President & Co-Founder, Canadian Gap Year Association

Michelle is an educator and youth advocate that has taught grades 4 through College, developed International Service-Learning Programs, nurtured Educational Partnerships with school boards from coast to coast, and developed youth policy. Having a finger on the pulse of the needs of young learners, combining their need for experiential learning and developing reflective and values-aligned practices, she founded the Canadian Gap Year Association to raise the profile of gap year as a solution to mental health, lack of clarity, and the skill gap.

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Karan Agrawal

Student Panelist

Karan Agrawal is from Toronto, Canada and is currently coming off his gap year where he earned a high income and professional experience within one of the top five banks in Canada. He began his studies initially in 2020 within the Mechanical Engineering discipline.

During the pandemic, he and his family struggled both financially and emotionally. To help his family out, he decided to take a gap year, and explore a new career path as he was unsure if Mechanical Engineering was the right program choice for him.

Although he dealt with much uncertainty, the reward for Karan was well worth it as he is now saving to buy a home for his family, and found his real passion in data analysis. Karan has switched his major to Industrial Engineering, and helped his family recover from the pandemic.

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Yvan Kammelu

Student Panelist

Yvan Kammelu graduated from McGill University, and then travelled to Nigeria for a gap year.

In Nigeria, he connected with family, worked and explored his interest in public health. Instead of going straight into a master’s program, after earning his degree in Kinesiology and Economics, he chose to travel and see what options were out there before deciding on a master’s program.

Now, Yvan is back in Montreal, preparing his applications for post-graduate studies. As a CanGap Ambassador, he hopes to share insight from his undergraduate experience to help other gappers make the best decision when picking university programs.

Yvan is also a model and a freelance graphic artist. He enjoys dancing, taking pictures and travelling.

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Lauren Marshall headshot

Lauren Marshall

Student Panelist

Lauren graduated high school in june 2022 and is only a few months into her gap year. She was very nervous about taking time off school and couldn't decide what to do to make this gap year worthwhile. She enjoys reading, writing and her gap year goal is to write a short story and travel!

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Concurrent Sessions

Remote College Programs: An Open Door for Adult Learners

Time Icon11:30 - 12:30

Researchers across the world are finding the shift to emergency remote learning, caused by the pandemic, may have inadvertently opened doors to postsecondary education for some...

Researchers across the world are finding the shift to emergency remote learning, caused by the pandemic, may have inadvertently opened doors to postsecondary education for some traditionally marginalized learners. For mature learners especially, labour market disruptions and remote working arrangements may be pushing those doors wide open. This presentation will summarize findings from a collaborative research project between HEQCO and OCAS, aimed at better understanding the pandemic’s impact on prospective Ontario college students. The presenters will draw from their analysis of approximately 13,000 survey responses to explore how student learning preferences and decision-making about postsecondary have been impacted by the COVID-19 / remote learning environment.

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Jackie Pichette

Director, Policy, Research and Partnerships, Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario

Jackie Pichette is the Director of Research, Policy and Partnerships at the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO), where she guides research projects and works with external partners to explore innovations and improvements in higher education. Prior to joining HEQCO, Jackie worked as a consultant at an Indigenous advisory services firm, as community organizer at Simon Fraser University, and as a government policy analyst. She has a M.P.P from Simon Fraser University and a B.A.H from Queen’s University.​

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Sohrab Rahmaty headshot

Sohrab Rahmaty

Lead Researcher and Writer, OCAS

Sohrab Rahmaty recently joined OCAS’s Applied Research Department as their Lead Researcher and Writer. He has extensive professional research experience and enjoys analyzing, and working with, both quantitative and qualitative data. At OCAS, Sohrab and his team work extensively with Power BI and Cognos which provide the data for much of their research needs. Sohrab also has extensive labour market and economic development experience, as well as expertise working with international students and hopes to bring these skill sets to OCAS’s future research projects.

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Networking Lunch

Time Icon12:30 - 1:30
Concurrent Sessions

Building Bridges in SEM to Cut Across Differing Stakeholder Needs

Time Icon1:30 - 2:30

As a SEM leader, you will be acutely aware of the various stakeholder needs, expectations and demands that are placed on you and your team on a regular basis. How do you...

As a SEM leader, you will be acutely aware of the various stakeholder needs, expectations and demands that are placed on you and your team on a regular basis. How do you maintain strategy when you are pushed and pulled in so many directions, some of which are not rooted in organizational strategy but rather, narrow scope views?

This session will provide insights and pragmatic approaches to maintaining SEM momentum and direction in a way that balances stakeholder engagement with organizational strategy and will build on years of successful SEM outcomes in an environment that has launched more than 40 new programs in 10 years, and grew from 2400 to more than 9000 students.

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Shawn Chorney

Vice President Strategic Infrastructure, Indigenous and Learner Services, Canadore College

Shawn Chorney is currently serving his 13th year as vice president at Canadore College in North Bay, Ontario.

Progressive, collaborative, innovative, and inclusive in support of delivering above established targets, are terms that have been used by both internal and external college stakeholders when describing Chorney's tenure as vice president. Chorney has collaborated with and led a team of dedicated and talented colleagues to establish Canadore as a college of choice that supports its learners as unique stakeholders of their college. This work has included the stewardship of comprehensive strategies and frameworks linked to mental health, equity, diversity and inclusion, sustainable development, and Indigenous education. This passion includes social innovation as evidenced through project leadership linked to clean water, sustainable food development, seniors' social inclusion, and The Village, Canadore's ground-breaking approach to educating health and wellness professionals.

Under Chorney's leadership, the College has secured more than $25M to develop and foster social innovation through programs and services. These include initiatives such as iCan Lead, the student leadership program developed by Canadore and poverty reduction efforts in the region including the Nipissing Poverty Reduction Through Education Program.

Prior to his time at Canadore, Chorney led campus expansion and renewal efforts at Northern College as both Associate Regional Director, South Region, and as Manager of the College Foundation. Chorney previously held positions at the United Way as Executive Director and in the private sector as a successful and results-driven entrepreneur.

Chorney currently serves on numerous boards and committees including the Colleges and Institutes Canada National Advisory Committee on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and as a member of the Ontario College Athletics Association Board of Directors. Chorney is a 2009 recipient of the Ontera Youth Leadership Award, 2015 alumnus of the Governor Generals Canadian Leadership Conference, and 2017 recipient of the Colleges and Institutes Canada Award for Leadership.

Chorney holds numerous training designations in mental health disciplines, cross-cultural competency, human resources, and strategic organizational planning. He earned his Bachelor's Degree from Laurentian University and a Master of Business Degree from the University of Phoenix.

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Jeannette Miron

Registrar and Senior Director Student Success, Canadore College

Jeannette Miron has worked in the Ontario College and University system for over twenty years. She has progressed through various roles in her career and is currently the Registrar and Senior Director of Enrolment and Student Services as well as Privacy Officer for Canadore College in North Bay, Ontario. As the current chair of the College’s strategic enrolment management committee, she is responsible for the coordinated efforts of all campus enrolment strategy and target achievement. She has led several student mobility initiatives at her institution and provincially, in partnership with other institutions. She is also a member of several provincial and national working groups where she maintains focus on access, enrolment, equity, privacy and sustainability issues.

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Concurrent Sessions

Access, Awareness and Success – Building an Equity Ambassador Program

Time Icon1:30 - 2:30
This session will focus on building a program intended to assist in increasing the diversity of the undergraduate student population by providing peer support to applicants from...
This session will focus on building a program intended to assist in increasing the diversity of the undergraduate student population by providing peer support to applicants from equity-seeking backgrounds; applicants can ask questions and receive support from current students from equity-seeking backgrounds. Joining the co-presenters will be Shoshannah Bennett-Dwara, who is a recent Queen’s University Bachelor of Science (Honours) of Biology graduate. We will highlight growing the program from 5 initial ambassadors in the winter of 2020 to a current staff of over 20. Topics of discussion will also include utilizing government grants to build the program, creating professional development opportunities for our staff, and highlighting testimonials from team members and incoming students who have interacted with our ambassadors. To conclude we will open the floor for a Q&A session with attendees.

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Ryan Snowdon

Strategic Enrolment Management Lead, Faculty of Arts and Science, Queen's University

Ryan Snowdon is the Strategic Enrolment Management Lead in the Faculty of Arts and Science at Queen’s University. In this role, Ryan guides the faculty in all matters of enrolment and retention including the development of transfer opportunities and pathways. Ryan has over 10 years of experience working in Undergraduate Admissions at Queen’s where he was integral in developing a First-Generation Pathway while continuing to oversee key initiatives such as the Indigenous Admission Policy and admission to upper year and online programs. Ryan has presented on transfer options and processes at several conferences and colleges throughout Canada and the United States.

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Richard Mitchell headshot

Richard Mitchell

Manager of Access and Inclusion, Undergraduate Admission and Recruitment, Queen's University

Richard brings 14 years of direct experience in community outreach, relationship building, and providing educational support to various students from underserved communities throughout the GTA. Examples include building and maintaining relationships with Toronto Community Housing (TCH), MP’s Office (Bill Morneau), Regent Park Community Health Centre, Empowered Squared, Toronto District School Board, the Pathways to Education program and most recently representing Queen’s on the Tri-Business School Collaborative. As the Manager of Access and Inclusion with the Undergraduate and Recruitment team, Richard is responsible for the implementation and execution of the Undergraduate and Recruitment (UAR) EDII Task Force recommendations. Formed in August 2020 the UAR RDII Task Force was created to address challenges of equity, inclusion and diversity faced by Black, Indigenous and racialized students. Under his portfolio Richard oversees the First-Generation Student Admissions Pathway and the Queen’s Equity Ambassador Program. Both initiatives focus on increasing access and awareness to post-secondary by engaging with equity deserving and racialized students to reduce barriers to demystify and some of the barrier’s they encounter. Richard is also currently acting as the Vice Chair for the Standing Committee, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion with the Ontario University Registrars Association (OURA).

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Shoshannah Bennett-Dwara headshot

Shoshannah Bennett-Dwara

Recruitment Representative, Undergraduate Admission and Recruitment, Queen’s University

Shoshannah Bennett-Dwara is a Recruitment Representative in the First-Generation Portfolio for Admission and Recruitment at Queen's University. She works directly with underrepresented communities in the GTA to assist in navigating the process of obtaining a post-secondary education. She has spent 4+ years working in EDII work through enacting policy and enforcing change through her role as Undergraduate Trustee to the Queen's University Board of Trustees as well as through Vice-President of the Queen's Student Diversity Project, Co-Chair and Co-Founder of the Queen's University Advocacy Coalition, and Chief of Sponsorship on the Queen's Black Premedical Association, among others. She has an overarching goal to express, validate, and ensure that the perspectives and ideas of marginalized groups are readily discussed and actively pursued to promote diversity, inclusion, and equity at Queen's and beyond.

Shoshannah has won various accolades that speak to her passion in furthering the above aim, including the Agnes Benidickinson Tricolour Award, the highest tribute that can be paid to a student for valuable and distinguished service to Queen's University in non-athletic, extracurricular activities. She looks forward to expanding her reach in the coming years and truly cultivating courageous change.

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Concurrent Sessions

Additional Session TBA

Time Icon1:30 - 2:30

Networking & Refreshment Break

Time Icon2:30 - 2:45
Keynote Presentation

We’re All In A Race: How To Ignite Ambition, Inspire Action, and Redefine Success For Yourself And Others

Time Icon2:45 - 3:45

We’re all in a race. The pressure, the deadlines, the competition for students. For Olympian Sarah Wells, it was a literal race at the Olympic Games and on the popular TV...

We’re all in a race. The pressure, the deadlines, the competition for students. For Olympian Sarah Wells, it was a literal race at the Olympic Games and on the popular TV show The Amazing Race, but in the Student Engagement world, there are a lot of parallels. While every scenario may be unique, we all have pressure to move quickly and push boundaries in order to achieve success. In this session Sarah will bring her energetic approach to teach us how to ignite ambition through fostering self-belief, how to inspire action by leveraging our distinguished strengths, and how we can redefine success to create momentum everyday. You’ll want to listen up when Olympic semi-finalist and Pan American silver medallist Sarah Wells takes the stage!

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Sarah Wells

Olympian, Believe Initiative

Obstacles don't scare Sarah Wells. As an Olympic hurdler and Pan Am Games Silver medallist, Sarah has become an expert in overcoming hurdles both literally and figuratively. Founder of the Believe Initiative, Sarah has used her story to help over 125,000 people in North America understand the importance of being resilient and the power of believing in yourself. Sarah has worked with organizations such as Salesforce, Deloitte, Proctor and Gamble, Kraft-Heinz, Bell Media, and Google on how to build more resilient teams and leverage passion to activate purpose. Most recently you might recognize Sarah from Season 7 of the Amazing Race Canada where she finished as runner up, and was able to use her skills in a whole new kind of way. As someone who used to exercise for a living, she's a little bit crazy, but very passionate about making an impact. You'll want to listen up when Olympic semi-finalist and Pan Am Games silver medallist Sarah Wells takes the stage!

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Closing Remarks

Time Icon3:45 - 4:00
Graham Donald headshot

Graham Donald

Founder & President, Brainstorm Strategy Group

Graham Donald is one of North America’s leading experts on attracting, recruiting, and engaging students and graduates.

He founded Brainstorm Strategy Group Inc. in 2003 to focus on improving students’ school-to-work transition by advising and training both the employers that hire students and the educators who support their career development on campus.

His clients have included KPMG, PwC, University of Toronto, Deloitte, GE, McGill University, HSBC, UBC, Rutgers University, Kraft, and many others.

He chairs several conferences annually including the Campus Recruiting Forums in cities across Canada and the USA; the Canadian Career Development Summit; and, the Strategic Enrolment Marketing & Management Forum. He also speaks regularly at conferences across the US and Canada.

Graham Donald is a firm believer in the value of a general arts education and makes use every day of the skills he developed pursuing a double-major in English and Literary Studies. He received both his BA and MBA from the University of Toronto.

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Jennifer Powell headshot

Jennifer Powell

Director, Community Engagement, Brainstorm Strategy Group Inc.

Jennifer Powell has 13 years of experience working in the post-secondary sector in areas that include communications, marketing, admissions, student recruitment, student services, work integrated learning, career development, event planning and stakeholder relations.

During her time at Durham College, she also was a member of the Board of Governors.

Prior to joining the sector, Jennifer worked at a national not-for-profit that represented the interests of both grocery retailers and foodservice distributors across Canada in both event planning and public policy positions.

Jennifer holds a diploma from Sir Sandford Fleming as well as post-graduate certificates obtained through Ontario Tech University and Ryerson University and a micro-credential through the Brainstorm Strategy Group Inc.

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FAQs

Expand FAQ
Is the SEMM Forum right for me?

Are you involved in attracting, recruiting, or engaging students in their post-secondary experience in Canada? If the answer to this question is yes, then the SEMM Forum is right for you. This includes strategic enrolment leaders, marketers, recruiters, registrars, senior administration, deans, student services and other professionals. Check out the “Who Should Attend?” section here.

Expand FAQ
When does the SEMM Forum start?

The SEMM Forum officially begins at 5:30 p.m. (EST) on Monday, October 24th with an opportunity to meet and share with peers from across Canada while enjoying drinks and a light dinner. We are also hosting two concurrent pre-conference workshops earlier in the day (additional registration required) that begin at 1:30 p.m. (EST).

Expand FAQ
Where is the conference taking place?

The conference is taking place at the Courtyard by Marriott Toronto Downtown Hotel which is on Yonge Street near College/Carleton. At the Courtyard by Marriott Toronto Downtown Hotel we have a special SEMM Forum hotel room until October 5th. You can reserve your accommodations directly online here or by calling Marriott reservations at 1 (800) 321-2211 or (416) 924-0611 and reference the “SEMM Forum”.

Whether you’re arriving by public transit, car, taxi, rideshare, plane or train, Toronto streets and our main highways are busy, so plan accordingly – we don’t want you to miss a moment of it!

Expand FAQ
When should I arrive?

If you are attending one of the pre-conference workshops:
You’ll want to be at the event venue by 1 p.m. at the latest on the 24th.

If you are starting with the opening reception and light dinner:
You’ll want to be at the venue by 5 p.m. at the latest on the 24th.

If you are not able to join us until the morning of our formal program:
We recommend arriving at the hotel on the 24th as we’re starting early on the 25th! Registration and breakfast will begin at 7:30 a.m. and the conference program starts at 8:30 a.m.

Expand FAQ
What's included in my registration?
  • Light dinner and reception on the evening of Monday, October 24th
  • Two days of invaluable conference workshops and keynote presentations
  • Countless opportunities for networking, sharing and learning
  • Full breakfasts on October 25 & 26
  • Refreshment breaks throughout the days on October 25 & 26
  • Sit-down lunches on October 25 & 26
  • Access to exhibits throughout the conference
  • Networking reception on October 25th
Expand FAQ
What's the benefit of a program focused on Canadian practices?

We’re Canadian, eh? SEM is very different in other countries. We believe that when professionals learn from peers at other institutions who have similar goals, students, systems and constraints and share Canadian-made solutions across silos, organizational goals can be achieved and students benefit as a result. The SEMM Forum provides an opportunity for everyone on campus to have a positive and sustainable impact on the institutional outcomes that support student success.

Expand FAQ
Is this conference entirely in person, virtual or hybrid?

The conference is entirely in person. It has been 2 years since many of us have had the opportunity to speak face-to-face, share ideas and network with each other. We’re so excited to be able to offer the conference program in person this year. You can be confident knowing that the conference team is taking all public health measures very seriously and we will follow and request that our delegates follow guidelines at all times.

2022 Sponsors

If you're interested in sponsoring this year's SEMM Forum, please contact Jennifer Powell,
via jennifer@brainstorm.ca to learn about available opportunities.

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