National Guild For Community Arts Education

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Home > Networking

What's a Conference without Great Conversations & New Connections?

Each year we hear from delegates that one of the most valuable aspects of attending the Conference for Community Arts Education are the discussions that result from both formal and on-the-fly networking opportunities. With that in mind, we've planned the following events.

Conference delegates represent nonprofit arts education organizations across the country, including arts and cultural centers, community arts schools, preparatory programs, performing arts companies, youth serving organizations (e.g., Boys and Girls Clubs of America), museums, and other agencies. Some organizations provide classes and lessons in their own facilities; others collaborate with senior centers, hospitals, public schools, and other agencies to increase access to arts education. Many do both.

Connect with your peers across the country during the following events!

(schedule subject to change)

Everyone's Right to Arts and Culture: A Community Conversation
Sponsored by Creative Philadelphia — Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy

Wednesday, November 11, 6:00 PM - 8:00PM

Free and open to the public

Like nutrition, health care, and shelter, arts and culture should be a right for all residents. In many major cities, we have seen a decline in investment in cultural resources in low-income neighborhoods.
Join us at the Philadelphia Clef Club of Jazz and Performing Arts for a free, public forum to discuss what is at stake in our communities when wide disparities persist in who has access to arts and culture and who does not, as well as to explore what we all can be doing to increase cultural equity. Learn More.

Office Hours

Thursday, November 12 - Saturday, November 14

Meet with an expert in the field for a free consultation focused on your questions, challenges, and areas of interest. Consultations are available for individuals or groups on a first-come, first served basis during scheduled Office Hours blocks. List of experts TBA. You may sign-up for a consultation on-site at the registration desk.

Discipline Roundtable Breakfasts 

Thursday, November 12, 8:30 AM - 9:45 AM

Kick-off your conference experience by engaging in a focused conversation with your peers that work in your artistic discipline at organizations across the country. This is a great way for veterans and first-time conference attendees alike to make connections that will last through the next three days and beyond!

Breakfast meetings are planned for Dance, Music, Theatre, Media Arts, and Visual Arts disciplines.

Next Level Luncheons 

Thursday, November 12, 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Ticketed event: $35

These dynamic, peer luncheons feature facilitated discussions that will generate ideas and practical strategies for taking your organization to the next level. Topics include:

  • Activating Your Brand
  • Building Student Participation in Fee-Based Programs
  • Facing the Future: Effective Succession Planning
  • Harnessing the Power of Volunteers
  • Meeting Them Where They Are: Strategies for Online Arts Learning
  • Mobilizing Parents and Families as Advocates
  • Raising Real Money with Corporate Partners
  • Recruiting and Retaining Talented Staff
  • Technology Planning and Integration
  • Using Data to Tell Your Organization’s Story

Opening Night Reception 

Thursday, November 12, 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM

Gather at the Philadelphia Marriot Downtown to celebrate the kick-off of the 78th annual conference with friends old and new. Explore the Arts Education Expo. Have a drink, mingle, network, and connect!

Taste of Philadelphia Dine-Arounds 

Thursday, November 12, 7:00 PM

Join your peers as we head out to sample some of Philadelphia's great eateries. Out of pocket.

Meet the Ambassadors Breakfast

Friday, November 13, 8:00AM - 8:45PM

Meet with the 18 arts education leaders that have been selected to serve as this year's Guild Ambassadors. Learn about upcoming professional development and networking events, connect with members that share your interest or live in your area, and find out how to get involved!

Networking Meetings 

Friday, November 13, 12:15 PM - 1:45PM

Meet with some of the National Guild's Networks and Ambassadors. Meetings will include:

  • Arts-in-Education Roundtable
  • Arts Centers Roundtable
  • Collegiate Divisional Roundtable
  • Creative Youth Development Roundtable
  • Culturally Specific Roundtable
  • Large School Roundtable
  • Mid-Size School Roundtable
  • Small School Roundtable

Get to Know the Guild Breakfast

Saturday, November 14, 7:30AM - 8:45AM

Learn about new developments at the Guild, exciting upcoming programs, and the diverse benefits of Guild Membership. Staff members will lead an in-depth discussion on what the Guild can offer you and your organization. Come, enjoy your breakfast, and learn about how the Guild is advancing arts learning opportunities for all.

Site Visits 

Saturday, November 14, 9:00 AM - 12:00PM

Get out of the hotel and into the community for a behind-the-scenes look at some of the Philadelphia area's exemplary community arts education organizations. Visits include facility tours, overviews of each organization's key programs and inner workings, and an opportunity for in-depth dialogue with peers working in similar disciplines or program types.

Annual Awards Luncheon

Saturday, November 14, 12:30 PM - 2:15 PM

Join us for a celebratory luncheon honoring Kwayera Archer-Cunningham, founding president and CEO of Ifetayo Cultural Arts (Brooklyn, NY) and Lily Yeh, founder of Village of Arts and Humanities (Philadelphia, PA) and Barefoot Artists, Inc. (Philadelphia, PA).

Philadelphia Mural Arts Walking Tour

Saturday, November 14, 2:30 PM - 4:00 PM

Ticketed event: $15
Tour leaves from the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown

Explore the world’s largest art gallery on foot during this one-mile Mural Arts Program walking tour. A professionally trained guide will share the stories of the people, places, and themes of each mural. Along the way, you also will learn about the culture of the neighborhoods, how the murals complement their environment, and the 30-year history of the nationally-recognized Mural Arts Program.

Closing Night Celebration  

Saturday, November 14, 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM

Celebrate new friendships, collaborations, and insights, and raise a glass to our continued work together as a field!


This resource brought to you by the National Guild for Community Arts Education.