by Kimberly McNair, EdD, Director of College Access and Enrollment,
The last plenary session at AACRAO SEM 2019, "Taking SEM Home," directed participants to reflect on the conference and identify gaps and opportunities to help enhance their SEM work.
During Part 1 of the session, attendees created a word cloud, with the following being the most prominent responses: involvement, relationships, students matter, ethos, courageous leadership, purpose first, and data. This feedback
and subsequent discussion seem to reinforce that SEM leaders have a student-first ethos and rely on relationships and data to achieve SEM goals.
In Part 2 of the session, Dr. Clayton Smith, SEM Conference Director, offered the following as guiding thoughts to help SEM leaders process and take back what they learned to their campus community.
1. SEM leaders must create stories that make SEM sing. What stories will you tell about the SEM work at your institution?
2. Cross campus communication is an integral part of being a SEM professional. How can you improve your cross-campus communication to advance SEM goals and objectives?
3. As a SEM professional, you must carefully assess the environment and encourage everyone to pull together. How can you build coalitions to advance SEM work at your institution?
4. SEM requires good programming, technology, and operations. How are you going to work through each of these areas on your campus?