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pre-conference workshops

NCLCA Pre-Cons take a deep dive into the work of the learning center professional and provide opportunities to develop as a center and as a leader in the field.

Registration Pricing:

individual sessions | $50

3 sessions bundle | $120 



Pre-Con: Tuesday September 28

Session A:     Forging Successful Learning Centers

Critical Considerations and Evidence-Based Practices for New Learning Center

Session C: Why we will not return to exclusively face-to-face tutoring post COVID

Improving Student Engagement Through Technology 

Session D: Forging Supportive Pathways for Neurodiverse Learners

How your learning center can champion the success of students with learning differences

Session E Forging a Foundation of Equity and Empathy

Implementing Bias Education and Training for Your Learning Center Staff

Pre-Con | Tuesday, September 28

Session A | 8:00 - 11:00 a.m.

Forging Successful Learning Centers: Critical Considerations and Evidence-Based Practices for New Learning Center Directors

Stepping into an LC leadership role and feeling overwhelmed about how to focus your efforts? Join members of the NCLCA Past Presidents Council for an in-depth exploration of evidence-based best practices that will help you improve the infrastructure and operations of your center.

Breakout groups will allow you to begin forging concrete plans in critical areas, including LC programs and services, utilization of online tools and technology, assessment and evaluation, professional development, and budgets and revenue generation.

Facilitated by

Lindy Coleman


Lindy Coleman began her career at the College of Charleston in 2001 as the Coordinator of the Study Skills Program in the Center for Student Learning.  She stepped into the role of Associate Director in 2011, and became the Center for Student Learning Director in 2016.

As the Director, Lindy oversees the day to day operations of the College’s centralized academic support services center, the Center for Student Learning, which includes five walk-in tutoring labs, by appointment tutoring, academic coaching, SI (Supplemental Instruction), study skills assistance, and the Cougar Countdown program. She works closely with the on-site professional staff, faculty lab directors, and more than 160 student employees.

Lindy also serves on the boards of NCLCA, the National College Learning Center Association, and SECLCA, the Southeastern College Learning Center Association, a regional affiliate group encompassing South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia.

Laura Sanders


Laura Sanders is the College of Engineering Assistant Dean for Student Success and the Hesse Learning Resource Center Director at Valparaiso University.  She has been a learning center professional in STEM-related areas for 25 years and has served on the NCLCA Executive Board in various roles for ten years.  Laura is now a past-president serving the organization on the Council for Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS) Board of Directors, as the NCLCA Certification Officer, and Chair of the Learning Center of Excellence program. Her areas of interest are tutor training for STEM courses, assessing student learning outcomes, learning center management and best practices, and learning strategies.

Lisa D’Adamo-Weinstein


For over 30 years, Lisa D’Adamo-Weinstein has been a higher education leader, administrator, and educator in the fields of learning assistance, learning center leadership, student affairs, student support services, student success and retention, learning with technology, and online learning. She is certified in organizational change management and has conducted numerous external reviews and certification evaluations of learning support centers.

She is currently an associate professor at SUNY Empire State College. Before coming to the college in 2007, she wore many hats teaching, administrating, and directing learning assistance programs at Indiana University, American University, and the United States Military Academy – West Point.

You can find out more about Lisa’s background, presentations, and research interests at

https://sites.google.com/site/drlisadw/home  or connect on LinkedIn at


Jenny Haley

Professional Development

Dr. Jenny Haley is a Past President of NCLCA, past Communications and Publications Officer for NCLCA, current Chairperson of CLADEA (Council of Learning Assistance and Developmental Education Associations), and current Chairperson for the LCLC (Learning Center Leadership Certification).  Dr. Haley holds LCLC Level 4 (Lifetime) certification.

Geoff Bailey

Budget Revenue

Dr. Geoff Bailey is the Immediate Past President for NCLCA and served as both Vice President and President (2018-2020). He earned the NCLCA Certified Learning Center Professional (Level 4) lifetime achievement in 2016 and has served on the Frank Christ Outstanding Learning Center Award Committee, President’s Outstanding Learning Center Award Committee, Innovative Use of Technology Award Committee, NCLCA/LSCHE Website Award Committee, and Conference Social Committee.

Moreover, Geoff serves as the Executive Director of REACH (Resources for Academic Achievement) at the University of Louisville. He received a BS degree in Sports Medicine from Guilford College, a MS in Counselor Education and his PhD in Higher Education Administration from UNCG. Geoff’s commitment to a servant leadership philosophy is evidenced in both his extensive institutional service and commitment to professional organizations. Additionally, Geoff serves as an adjunct faculty member for the College of Education at the University of Louisville where he teaches graduate level coursework for both the College Student Personnel and Higher Education Administration programs, as well as serving on doctoral comprehensive exam review and dissertation committees. His research interests include the impact of learning centers on students’ success, persistence and retention efforts, assessment, and academic self-efficacy.

Session B | 8:00 - 11:00 a.m. Canceled 

From Idea to Submission: Publishing articles in NCLCA Newsletters and TLAR Articles

Session C | 12:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Why We will not Return to Exclusively Face-to-Face Tutoring Post COVID: Improving Student Engagement through Technology

While many tutoring centers across the country saw a drop in student participation during pandemic-induced remote learning, at UMBC, we saw growth in students taking advantage of remote tutoring and supplemental instruction. What is more, we have seen evidence of improved engagement among students and tutors made possible by some of the virtual processes we've put in place. More engaged students tend to do better academically (National Survey of Student Engagement). We will discuss these findings in terms of tutoring meeting many of the criteria of high-impact practices (frequent, timely, and constructive feedback, structured opportunities to reflect on learning) and consider what comes next with online tutoring and student engagement as we return to predominantly face-to-face classes and student support programs for the fall. There are important benefits for tutors and tutees from online tutoring that we want to build on (accessibility, convenience, online peer engagement), which is why we will not go back to providing exclusively face-to-face tutoring.

Facilitated by

Delana Gregg

Dr. Delana Gregg serves as the Director of Academic Learning Resources, Assessment, and Analysis at UMBC. She oversees the Academic Learning Resources programs for the Academic Success Center (tutoring, supplemental instruction, alerts, placement testing, and academic success meetings). She also leads assessment for the Division of Undergraduate Academic Affairs, collaborating with programs to assess student learning and interventions for student success, retention, and graduation. Gregg's service as the President of UMBC's Professional Staff Senate and as a manager for UMBC's Middle States re-accreditation team helped her build a unique skill set in program assessment, data analysis, and higher education institutional knowledge focused on student success.

Sarah J. Shin

Dr. Sarah J. Shin is Associate Provost for Academic Affairs at UMBC, where she is also a Professor of Education and the 2017-20 Presidential Research Professor. A member of the Provost's Office senior leadership, Shin manages comprehensive periodic reviews of academic programs and development of new programs and leads key campus-wide initiatives, including strategic enrollment planning and implementation, strengthening online teaching and learning, and instructional space and scheduling improvement. Shin brings extensive leadership and shared governance experience, including her two-term service as president of the UMBC Faculty Senate and as an American Council on Education (ACE) Fellow (2017-18).

Session D | 12:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Forging Supportive Pathways for Neurodiverse Learners: How Your Learning Center Can Champion the Success of Students with Learning Differences

While the number of neurodiverse students enrolling on college campuses is rapidly growing, many students leave before earning a degree. Learning center professionals are challenged to establish postsecondary learning environments that foster access and academic success for students with learning differences. Forging pathways to success, learning center professionals must expand their understanding of the needs of neurodiverse students and employ strategies that address learner variability and support academic success. This session will focus on ways learning centers can be a champion for neurodiverse students through awareness, advocacy, coaching, learning environments, collaborative partnerships, and support services.

This pre-conference session will:

  • Increase awareness of neurodiversity and the challenges facing students with learning differences.
  • Examine the role Executive Functioning skills play in achieving higher education success.
  • Explore learning ecosystems, design, and Universal Design for Learning approaches.
  • Review coaching techniques and programming designed to support learner variability.
  • Showcase the beneficial impact of learning communities on neurodiverse student success.
  • Provide opportunities for goal setting and vision promotion for attendee campuses.

Attendees can expect to gain a solid foundation for understanding neurodiverse students and how learning centers can impact their success. Participants will receive handbook resources which include:

  1. Learning modules for coaching Executive Functioning strategies.
  2. UDL checklist for learning centers and campus offices.
  3. Guides for campus collaboration and funding sources.
  4. Library guides focused on neurodiversity, universal design for learning in postsecondary learning environments, and Executive Functioning in higher education.

This session will be facilitated by two learning center professionals from the university learning center at East Carolina University. The session will include topic presentation, group discussion, as well as campus vision and planning activities.

Facilitated by

Elizabeth Coghill

Dr. Elizabeth Coghill has served as the inaugural Director of the Pirate Academic Success Center at East Carolina University for 14 years. An experienced administrator, her research and practice interests focus on marginalized student populations' academic and social success: neurodiverse learners, students of color, first-generation, economically disadvantaged, and military-affiliated students. She is an early adopter of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) techniques embedded within a campus learning center. Dr. Coghill is an invited speaker on neurodiversity, a podcast contributor for the ThinkUDL podcast series, and is a co-editor and author of the book Supporting Neurodiverse College Student Success:  A Guide for Librarians, Student Support Services, and Academic Learning Environments, a Roman and Littlefield publication. Coghill professional experiences are in learner support services, academic advising, registrar, systems training, career development, enrollment management, and admissions.

amber Arnold

Amber Arnold, MAEd, has served as the Assistant Director for Student Success at the Pirate Academic Success Center at East Carolina University since March 2019. Before this role, she served as the Mentoring Specialist for two years at the center. Her specialized interests in higher education include high school transition, Executive Functioning, and advocacy supports for neurodiverse students, peer-led academic success coaching and mentoring, call center programming, freshman seminar curriculum, and fostering a sense of belonging on campus through student success initiatives.    

Session E | 12:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Forging a Foundation of Equity and Empathy: Implementing Bias Education and Training for Your Learning Center Staff

Do you have plans to incorporate implicit bias training for your tutors, academic coaches, and SI Leaders? Participants will begin to create a working plan for their learning center's bias or other DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) training program in this interactive session. During the workshop, participants will have the opportunity to identify concrete action items for their training delivery, including:

  • Establishing and assessing learning outcomes
  • Identifying key campus partnerships
  • Choosing appropriate facilitation strategies

This workshop is designed for learning center staff who have a foundational knowledge of the impact of implicit bias and who intend to incorporate DEI training as a permanent component of their staff training program.

Facilitated by

Abe Saunders

Abe Saunders, M.A., M. Ed. serves as the Associate Director for the Center for Student Learning at the College of Charleston. He has facilitated bias education and training for faculty, staff, and students in various functional areas. His professional background and graduate work are in clinical mental health counseling and college student affairs administration.

Richa Pokhrel

Richa Pokhrel, M.A., serves as the Data Coordinator for the Center for Student Learning at the College of Charleston. Before joining the CSL, she worked at various nonprofit organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area. She received her Master's in International Development, but most of her career has been in some aspect of the education field.

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