Experiential Adventure is in the beautiful Oklahoma City at the 40th Annual Southwest Association of Student Assistance Programs Conference.
We survived the crazy earthquake that hit OKC last night at about 11:30 p.m. My reaction was similar to Kirk Herbstreit’s (ESPN’s college football analyst) reaction. He was at the OSU-K State game and was on the air live when the earthquake hit!
However, I know we will survive, as this picture clearly states.
We are very busy at this conference! We will be exhibiting from Sunday-Tuesday, so make sure and stop by to see us! This is the presentation we are going to use at the exhibitor booth.
We are presenting two concurrent workshops at SWASAP! Both workshops are on Tuesday, and they are going to be awesome! Our first workshop, “Constant Motion: Invest Fun and Teamwork Into Your TRiO Program” is at 11 a.m. and will last until 12:15 in Convention Center Room 4. This workshop is packed full of tried and true experiential education activities specifically targeted toward helping your TRiO students succeed in college.
Our second workshop, “Culture Change – Breaking the Cycle for Post Secondary Success” will be Tuesday at 3:00 p.m. in Convention Center Room 20. This workshop intertwines experiential learning throughout our keynote presentation targeted towards helping your TRiO students set goals to succeed in college and in life.
All participants who attend our workshop will receive a free copy of our new e-book, “Not The Same Name Game Book: Creative Ideas for Your Group to Get to Know Each Other Better.” This is a 9.99 value!
Let us know you are here! Follow us on Twitter at @ryan_eller_ea or on Facebook at Experiential Adventure.
For the past 40 years, SWASAP has advanced and defended the idea of equal opportunity education by supporting programs that identify and deliver services to individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. Our programs are grants from the U. S. Department of Education. Collectively referred to as the TRiO programs, they provide guidance, instruction, and reinforcement necessary for students to enter and successfully complete college.
Hello from Glen Rose, TX and the Riverbend Retreat Center. I am facilitating and speaking to almost 100 of the best and brightest students from across the SWASAP area. SWASAP is short for Southwest Association of Student Assistance Programs, and encompasses all of the TRiO programs from Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and New Mexico. I was brought in to provide experiential learning activities for the students as they traverse their leadership journey at the SWASAP Student Leadership Conference.
As a part of my Labor Day Challenge I wanted to present at a leadership conference. I will be here tonight until Sunday, and I am already loving my time here! These students will be equipped the tools necessary to be leaders at their high schools and colleges, they are being provided with direction for their dreams and ambitions, and will no doubt be successful. I love asking these students their dreams because I see their eyes sparkle when they talk about their passion. These are not average students, these are exceptional students who decided to take time out of their busy schedule to attend a leadership conference. These are students who want to be doctors, lawyers, nurses, educators, and leaders. These are students who see all of the obstacles that have been placed in their way, and fight through them. These are students who will one day be leading this world into a new frontier.
I will post about the SWASAP SLC everyday this weekend…I hope to profile a couple of students over the next couple of days and let you know the type of individuals I am working with here. As usual, I came here to teach, and I am being taught. I am learning how to persevere, how to dream and how to survive, that is what my Labor Day Challenge is all about.
At the end of last month, I was fortunate enough to attend the Oklahoma Division of Student Assistance Programs‘ Annual Conference in Tulsa, and presented a breakout session titled “Teamplay Tubes.” ODSA is the state organization for all of Oklahoma’s TRiO programs, and the conference is an awesome way to learn new information about legislation and regulations within the grant-funded community, but also a great place to share and disseminate information amongst peers. The breakout sessions give us an opportunity to share our newest techniques and information in a fun and informative way.
This year, I decided to use a new initiative, Teamplay Tubes, which we bought from the fine folks at Training Wheels. According to Training Wheels, Teamplay Tubes are a collection of PVC tubing and connectors that can be used for nearly 2 dozen activities that promote teamwork, creativity, communication, problem solving, decision-making, and skill building. This is a very versatile training tool that will challenge any group.
This was how I sequenced the workshop, with everything leading up to Teamplay Tubes and ended with the Feelings Marketplace Debrief.
Bumpity, Bump, Bump
Change Train (Change/Reverse/Switch)
Feelings Marketplace Debrief
Teamplay Tubes has several initiatives you can use with a group, and I decided that “Network” would be the best for our participants. With Network, your goal is to create a closed off network of tubes that has no openings left exposed. Therefore, all pipes and connectors were connected to the “Network.”
It is hard to find a more outgoing and persistent group than the TRiO counselors, so we had an absolute blast! They are an easy group to lead and facilitate, and they dominated Teamplay Tubes.
Today is TRiO Day 2011 at the Oklahoma State Capitol, the one day of the year that thousands of TRiO personnel, current participants and alumni converge on the House and Senate floors to declare their position and influence on Oklahoma’s higher education system.
TRiO is educational opportunity for low-Income, first generation and disabled Americans, and the Department of Education has made a commitment to further educate American youth regardless of gender, race, or socioeconomic status. In support of this commitment, Congress established a series of programs to help low-income students enter college, graduate and move on to participate more fully in America’s economic and social life. These programs are funded under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and are referred to as the TRIO Programs (initially just three programs). While student financial aid programs help students overcome financial barriers to higher education, TRIO programs help students overcome class, social and cultural barriers to higher education.
As mandated by Congress, two-thirds of the students served must come from families with incomes under $24,000, where neither parent graduated from college. Over 2,700 TRIO Programs currently serve nearly 873,000 low-income Americans.
In Oklahoma, there are 25 Upward Bound, 17 Educational Talent Search, 7 Upward Bound Math/Science, 3 Veterans Upward Bound, 5 Educational Opportunity Centers, 20 Student Support Services, and 4 Ronald E. McNair Post-baccalaureate Achievement Programs. This totals 81 TRiO projects housed at 27 higher-ed institutions and 4 community agencies. These projects serve 27,323 participants.
That is a huge chunk of students in Oklahoma, and I know we are making a huge impact. TRiO works. Our alumni have went on to achieve amazing things. I appreciate all that the TRiO personnel do, and I am proud of my students, both past and present…I look forward to seeing what great things happen in your life.