The 2019 Council of College and Military Educators (CCME) Symposium proved, one more time, to be worthwhile for all those who attended. The Symposium’s common theme “Expanding Pathways: Influencing Relevant Outcomes” was evident and provided a forum to not only bring awareness to, but to highlight and enhance initiatives designed to promote innovative collaboration across the spectrum of military and military-affiliated community of stakeholders. The acronym alone encourages and fosters a sense of community: CC ME – courtesy copy me.
This year CCME brought the heat with the Opening Ceremony -General Session setting the tone to calm the audience with extremely loud… energetic music that proved to: empower Brigadier General Gregory Chaney, aka the Baby General to speak for an hour, allow the Honorable Patrick Murphy to scare everyone into building a bunker, and not to leave out the beginning of a series of death by power point that started with the Department of Defense (DoD) Voluntary Education update from Ms. Dawn Bilodeau. The above was done with intent to ensure that all CCME supporters and partners had a full house at the exhibit hall.
Now that I have your undivided attention and all joking aside; the intent is to capture the essence of the CCME Symposium and how the forum collectively highlights items of interest and enhances awareness – illustrating how we all play an integral role in ensuring educational pathways are clearly defined and made available to our service members, veterans, and their spouses.
Key Takeaway – It takes a Community of Stakeholders to truly serve and support the Military and Veteran Community…
From the Keynote Speakers to the General & Concurrent Sessions, key items of interest spanned a wide range of issues…
✦ Legislative Initiatives;
✦ Pathways & Workforce Development;
✦ Aligning Career Goals & Education
✦ From Credits to Credentials;
✦ Innovative Partnerships & Bridge Programs;
✦ Defining Successful Transition ‘From Military to Corporate’
✦ Advocacy & Regulatory Compliance; and
✦ Competence/Learning Ecosystems – Optimizing Human Capital
Dan Roby, Associate Vice President of Military Outreach from American Military University, stated – “It was reassuring to hear the great strides DoD is making in ensuring that all universities have equal access to their military student population, which will ensure the military member has access to the counseling and guidance they need”.
“When thinking about influencing relevant outcomes” stated Scott Leeling, Military and Veteran Affairs for DeVryWorks, “…as a US Army Veteran it is reassuring to work for an institution that is helping to create veteran ready organizations with valid and tested content”.
“The traditionally conceptual ideas of education and training, licensure and credentialing are being reassessed and rightfully so. There is no greater time than the present to take the lead and champion collaboratively innovative solutions to address 21st Century education and training challenges” – Dr. Steven L. Hall, Director, Office Veterans Affairs – City of Houston, Mayor’s Office.
We are all blessed with the necessary tools and the drive to succeed in life, whether during and/or after military service. In a globally technological advancing society; and coming from one who wore all hats within the military affiliated community (dependent, USAF active duty, reservist, military spouse, caregiver, and now, CEO of Centurion Military Alliance), I can attest to the benefits and critical importance of the universal community gathering to participate in such a forum as the CCME Symposium – providing a platform that allows for and promotes pursuit of continuing education, certification or licensure goals.
In closing, Brigadier General Gregory Chaney and the Honorable Patrick J. Murphyprovided well-spoken words that caused the standing room only conference session attendees to pause and reflect. I believe this message set an encouraging and impactful tone for the 2019 CCME Symposium. We have to collaborate to ensure educational pathways are provided for those who serve so that our military force remains unquestionably competitive – learning, developing and remaining engaged as critical thinkers so that we retain our military prowess as the greatest nation in the history of mankind.
Thank you first and foremost to the CCME Board Members for their dedication in ensuring the 2019 Symposium was a great success!
Thank you to all Sponsors:
Platinum Corporate: Microsoft
General: Waldorf University
In-Kind: American Intercontinental University, Arizona State University, Bismarck State College, Campbell University, Central Texas College, Coastline Community College, Colorado Technical University, DeVryWorks, DOD Military Community and Family Policy, Indtai, Inc., Iowa State University, National University, Still Serving Promos, Texas A&M University Central Texas, University of Maryland, UMASS Lowell, University of North Carolina Wilmington, Webster University, WorkMerk