Conference Activities

Welcome to the 2018 NCAN National Conference!

Here is a list of a few special activities only for registered conference participants – we hope that you will find in one or more of these opportunities of interest and will register to participate.

Area Tours

  • Reinvention of Steel City Boat Tour, Tuesday Sept. 25, 2:30 – 4:30 pm
    There's no better way to appreciate the reinvention of Pittsburgh than from the rivers that define the city. This two hour boat tour, hosted by the Pittsburgh Promise, will showcase the investments that helped transform the Steel City into the "Eds and Meds" center it is today. The tour will also spotlight the Pittsburgh Promise, the ground-breaking scholarship program that is giving Pittsburgh the home-grown talent it needs to thrive. The cost is $15 and you can register by clicking here. (we regret that are unable to issue refunds for this event)
  • Campus Visit and Dinner – University of Pittsburgh, Tuesday, Sept. 25, 4:30 – 8:00 pm -- THIS TOUR IS NOW CLOSED
    The University of Pittsburgh Office of Admissions and Financial Aid invites you to experience Pitt first hand. Learn about Pitt’s undergraduate admissions process, prospective student profile, and affordability options while enjoying dinner and a campus visit to one of our nations’ oldest higher education institutions - Pitt is now a public research institution of 25,000 undergraduate students and home to the historic Cathedral of Learning.

Focus Groups

  • Counselor and Advisor Focus Group, Tuesday Sept. 25, 4:30 – 5:30 pm, Rivers Room
    American University's Center for Postsecondary Readiness and Success, in collaboration with NCAN, is looking for college counselors and advisers who are interested in sharing their thoughts on the knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to adequately guide students on their postsecondary college and career journey. What do college access professionals need to be successful when guiding/advising/counseling students through their postsecondary planning (college and career)? What skills and knowledge should be non-negotiable when considering any professional who provides student guidance as they navigate postsecondary options? If you’re interested in participating, send your name, contact information, and the name of this focus group to Laura Owen She will follow up with more details.
  • and MyStudentAid App Feedback Focus Group, Tuesday Sept. 25, 4:30 – 5:30 pm, Commonwealth 2 Room
    FSA is hosting a focus group to get feedback on the redesigned and the beta version of the myStudentAid mobile app. We are looking for NCAN members to provide feedback on these new tools. Ideally, focus groups participants will have already seen one or both of these new tools. Please respond to Sara Melnick at if you are interested in attending.
  • High-Achieving Students, Open-Access Programs and Under-Matching Discussion, Tuesday, Sept. 25, 1:00 – 1:45 p.m., Grand Ballroom
    Are you an open-access program that is concerned about under-matching for your high-achieving students? Are you concerned about the access, persistence, and completion of these students, who might be most at-risk of under-matching? If so, we invite you to join a small group of NCAN member programs that are working on and concerned about the issue. This group will meet during Tuesday lunch and will be led by NCAN member the College Crusade of Rhode Island. Members of this organization are very interested in discussing their pilot initiative in this area, in learning from like-minded organizations, and in discussing how to share strategies with others in the field of college access and success. Contact Sara Melnick at if you are interested in joining this discussion.
Movie Screening and Discussion, Tuesday, Sept. 25, 7:30 – 9:00 pm, Grand Ballroom
Please join us for a screening of Personal Statement, a feature-length documentary that follows three seniors at Brooklyn high schools who are determined to get their entire classes to college, even though they aren't even sure they are going to make it there themselves. These students work as college counselors in their schools because many of their friends have nowhere else to turn for support, and refuse to succumb to the barriers that prevent so many low-income students from attending and graduating from college. Juliane Dressner, the film's director, Karoline Jimenez, one of the students featured in the film, and Janice Bloom from College Access: Research & Action, the NCAN member featured in this film, will be attending the screening to answer questions.

In a few days we’ll be sending you information on how to download the NCAN conference app. The app will allow you to view all conference sessions so you can start creating your conference schedule. You'll also be able to see information about and start networking with conference presenters and attendees.

We look forward to seeing you in Pittsburgh.