After the inaugural WPCampus concluded in 2016, organizers put out a call for campuses across the country to host the event in 2017. The WPCampus planning committee has announced that WPCampus 2017 will be held July 14-15, at Canisius College in Buffalo, New York.
Rachel Carden, a Senior Software Engineer for Disney Interactive, came up with the idea for WPCampus in a Tweet published in August, 2015. Since then, the community has grown to more than 500 members.
— Rachel Carden (@bamadesigner) August 3, 2015
Interview With Rachel Carden
What did you learn from organizing the first WPCampus that will improve the second event?
Most of the lessons learned from WPCampus 2016 involved logistics. A brand new community planning a brand new event with very minimal people ‘on the ground’ was challenging but, clearly, not impossible.
Most of the changes we’ve implemented have been on how to make the time we spend planning more efficient, especially since we are an entirely volunteer-driven organization spread out all over the world.
Overall, our first event was a success but there’s always little notes you take away for the next go round, like ‘make sure we take the group photo BEFORE everyone leaves’ and highlighted at the top of the list: ‘make sure we have candy again.’
Ultimately, our main priority is to ensure attendees aren’t worrying about the ‘where’, ‘what’, and ‘how’ so they can instead focus on learning, networking, and making the most out of our short time together. This means taking notice of how we can improve communication, signage, etc.
‘The secret of all victory lies in the organization of the non-obvious’ could not be more true. The biggest question we asked ourselves after WPCampus 2016 was ‘how can we create more opportunities for diverse interaction and discussion?’
Our planning team has some great ideas and we’re excited to experiment a little, to see how a conference might be able to drive development outside the usual sessions and lightning talks. We’re really excited for what’s in store for our next event.
Will there be another WordPress in higher education survey?
I hope so! If not, it won’t be for lack of desire. Last year’s survey offered an incredible amount of insight and data into how WordPress is being used in higher education. It would be great to see what has changed. Stay tuned!
Why was Canisius College chosen for the event?
We had some amazing universities apply and invite us all to their campus. An honor for which we are most grateful and appreciative. As was the case with WPCampus 2016, it was really hard to pick just one but ultimately, it comes down to what we believe is best overall for our attendees.
We even have a grading matrix because, of course we do, we’re in higher education. Canisius College is a beautiful campus in a great location, especially since a majority of the WPCampus community is located in the eastern U.S. and Canada.
The team at Canisius has also been extremely supportive and is working hard to make sure we have a great time in their top-notch facilities. Buffalo is also a great city with amazing architecture, food, and scenery that we’re excited to explore.
WPCampus Is Aiming for Sessions With a Variety of Perspectives
- WPCampus 2016 Recap
- WPCampus 2016: WordPress in Higher Education
- WPCampus – A WordPress Event Focused on Higher Education
- WPCampus Review
Registration is not yet available but will open soon.
“We aim for our session topics to be a good mix of WordPress in higher ed as well as solely higher ed and solely WordPress,” Carden said.
“We recognize the value and inspiration in all perspectives. We hope the general WordPress community, and other higher ed communities, will see the value in investing in WPCampus and its mission to advance higher education by lending their time, knowledge and experience.”