C3X 2019 Reflections

Written By:

James Dwyer
C3X 2019 Committee Chair
Executive Director, Auxiliary Business Services
Arizona State University

Impact, Innovation, and Industry: Reflections on a Successful Conference Experience

When the NACAS team asked me to reflect on C3X on behalf of the 2019 conference committee, the first thought that came to mind was “thank you.”

Thank you to institutional members who invested time, resources, and thought leadership to help exponentially increase the impact auxiliaries have on students and the communities we serve. I was truly inspired by hearing others tell their stories and engage in the difficult discussions that are sometimes necessary to enable a true connection. We also got to see the awarding of the NACAS Foundation’s Campus Care Grant. I am extremely excited to see the results of the Cal State – Fullerton program and hear about the impact that it has made when we meet again next year. I am hopeful that by reflecting on this program at next year’s conference and recognizing new programs, this will become a valuable component of attending C3X in the future.

Thank you to business partners for supporting the C3X experience in so many ways. I heard anecdotally that the engagement level at the Expo was as strong as ever. Without your participation, the events, content, and tours would not have been as impactful. I also had the chance to connect with a business partner at an educational session and was inspired by the fact that their primary goal in attending was to take the content back to a campus contact that could not make the conference — That is a true partner.

Thank you, conference committee and volunteers. NACAS would not be what it is if the culture of volunteerism was not so strong. That culture was on full display at C3X in Phoenix, although we could have used a few more on the 5K Fun Run… The C3X 2019 Committee fully embraced the strategic goals provided to the group and worked hard to achieve them, not only in relation to the conference, but also in ensuring the lasting impact would be realized through enhanced engagement and facilitated networking. The educational content was the primary focus of the 2019 committee. I hope it exceeded expectations and will continue to be a resource as NACAS brings presenters back for webinars and other engagement opportunities that will drive value for members. For the 2020 conference committee, here is a riddle: How many volunteers does it take to stuff 2000+ room drop bags? Reach out to a member of the 2019 committee to learn the answer…

I would also like to thank the leadership team at Arizona State University, Dr. Morgan Olsen, Nichol Luoma, Jeff Rensel, Krystal Lewis, Cortney Smith, Mick Dalrymple, and countless others that volunteered time and resources to elevate the C3X experience.

Finally, thank you to the NACAS staff. It was very clear to me that you are all very passionate individuals that believe in the mission of the organization and the impact that it has on helping facilitate a better campus experience. The energy and optimism you all brought to the conference was amazing and rivaled any new student orientation leadership team I have ever worked with, and that is no small accomplishment.

We all have unique opportunities on our campuses to make an impact every day and I am looking forward to hearing more about how you tell that story, operationalize the idea, and strategically deliver value when we meet again in Anaheim, California for C3X 2020.