Indiana University
Education Conference

Join us online for one of the largest, most comprehensive educational summits in the country. Don't miss conference news and details; register now.

July 13th – 15th, 2021

Every year the Education Conference spotlights topics impacting the school experience and gathers sought-after experts influencing pivotal advancements in education. No other conference in the midwest provides access to such highly valuable resources for educators and administrators. Get registered below.

More About This Year's Topics
Keynote Speaker

Dr. Bettina L. Love

Dr. Bettina L. Love is an award-winning author and the Athletic Association Endowed Professor at the University of Georgia. She is one of the field’s most esteemed educational researchers. Her writing, research, teaching, and activism meet at the intersection of race, education, abolition, and Black joy. Dr. Love is concerned with how educators working with parents and communities can build communal, civically engaged schools rooted in Abolitionist Teaching with the goal of intersectional social justice for equitable classrooms that love and affirm Black and Brown children. In 2020, Dr. Love co-founded the Abolitionist Teaching Network (ATN). ATN’s mission is simple: develop and support teachers and parents to fight injustice within their schools and communities. In 2020, Dr. Love was also named a member of the Old 4th Ward Economic Security Task Force with the Atlanta City Council.
Dr. Love is a sought-after public speaker on a range of topics, including Abolitionist Teaching, anti-racism, Hip Hop education, Black girlhood, queer youth, Hip Hop feminism, art-based education to foster youth civic engagement, and issues of diversity and inclusion. She is the creator of the Hip Hop civics curriculum, GET FREE.
Keynote Speaker

Dena Simmons, Ed.D.

Dena Simmons, Ed.D., is an activist, educator, and student of life from the Bronx, New York. She is the founder of LiberatED, a liberatory approach to social and emotional learning, racial justice, and healing. She writes and speaks nationally about social justice and culturally responsive and sustaining pedagogy as well as creating emotionally intelligent and safe classrooms within the context of equity and liberation. She is the author of the forthcoming book, White Rules for Black People (St. Martin’s Press).


Education Equity: The Role of Schools and Universities in Leveling the Playing Field

Last year, over 5,000 education professionals joined us online for one of the largest, most comprehensive educational conferences in the country.  No other conference in the Midwest provides access to such highly sought-after experts influencing important advancements in education at no cost. The conference provides professional development opportunities to educators and administrators in K-12 and higher education that lead to equitable educational outcomes for students of color. This year, topics will include:

  • the state of K-12 and higher education in the era of COVID-19;
  • strategies to support equity in schools and the returned benefits;
  • social and emotional learning with an emphasis on how to teach and learn in the context of stress and the pandemic;
  • educational rights issues associated with grade retention, remedial class assignments, and standardized testing during COVID-19;
  • how to combat chronic absenteeism;
  • positive discipline during a pandemic;
  • school safety and the necessary role of social workers and counselors versus police and security officers;
  • best practices on how to navigate conversations with students about politics, race, and racism while facing pressures to remain nonpartisan;
  • teacher education innovation and how to make learning interesting beyond the use of textbooks; and
  • technology in the classroom

Participants will be provided links to livestream all sessions in advance.  Full recordings of the sessions approved by the presenters will be made available on IBE’s website.

PGP points will be provided.

2021 Conference Replays

Full Conference Schedule

Day 1 Schedule: Tuesday, July 13th

Click Each to Expand & Get Access Links


Join the Session Live: 

Steve Jefferson, WTHR Reporter
Steve, affectionately known as “Scoop J”, is an Emmy Award-Winning Reporter with numerous other awards including Edward R Murrow, Best Newscast from the Associated Press, and various community service awards. He’s reported on major events including the Atlanta bombings, 100 Million Man March, the Georgia floods and Hurricanes George and Katrina.

Steve is from Dayton, Ohio, where he graduated from The Wright State University Journalism School. Steve and his family currently reside in Indianapolis. You may see him around town on one of his motorcycles. He also enjoys social media, exercising, traveling, roller skating, bike riding, running, pro sports and word games.



Join the Session Live:

Dr. James Wimbush
Dr. James C. Wimbush is Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Multicultural affairs, Dean of the University Graduate School, and Professor of Business Administration at Indiana University. As Dean, he oversees Graduate Master’s and Doctoral programs on Indiana University’s eight campuses.

Nationally, he works to advance graduate education by serving as past-chair of the board of directors of the GRE; chair-elect of the Council of Graduate Schools’ board of directors; and as a member of the executive committee of the AAU’s Association of Graduate Schools. He was appointed to the joint Commission on the Future of Graduate Education, which released the 2010 report The Path Forward: The Future of Graduate Education in the United States.

About This Workshop

Join the Session Live: 

How is Indiana faring one year after the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic and what are the long-term implications for Hoosiers’ economic mobility and higher education opportunities going forward? We’ve seen through the past year that innovation and adaptability are keys for solving immediate challenges while preparing for the future, but that we’re not moving the needle forward quickly enough for all Hoosiers.

Commissioner Teresa Lubbers will share information about how higher education and the workforce have evolved in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and will present the data that has been driving conversations around equity and education at the state level. She will also review how the state is focusing on a strategic collaboration with employers, community partners, and providers to bolster the perception of education and training beyond high school.

Brittany Collins – Manager, Postsecondary Outreach and Career Transitions at the Indiana Commission for Higher Education


Introduction of Commissioner Lubbers

Deborah J. Curtis President, Indiana State University
Deborah J. Curtis began her tenure as the twelfth president of Indiana State University on January 3, 2018. She is the first female and only the second graduate of Indiana State to serve as president. She came to Indiana State from the University of Central Missouri where she had served as provost and chief learning officer since 2012.

Prior to becoming provost at Central Missouri, Curtis served as dean of the College of Education at Illinois State University from 2006 to 2012, interim dean from 2005 to 2006 and as director of the Cecilia J. Lauby Teacher Education Center and Clinical Experiences and Certification Processes from 2001 to 2005. She served on the faculty of Illinois State for 26 years, advancing to the rank of full professor.

Curtis earned her Ph.D. from Indiana State University in curriculum and instruction with specializations in secondary education and supervision of instruction. She holds a master’s degree in music education from the University of Illinois and a bachelor’s degree in music education from MacMurray College.

Throughout her career, Curtis has served her community and profession through engagement in a variety of service roles in Illinois, Missouri, and now Indiana. Some of these include the Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce Board, Terre Haute Competes, the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership, Indiana Chamber Board, Terre Haute Economic Development Corporation Board, Indiana Campus Compact Board, NCAA Division I Presidential Forum, and the Indiana Chamber 2025+ Task Force.




Join the Session Live: 

Teresa S. Lubbers
Teresa Lubbers was appointed in 2009 to serve as Commissioner for Indiana’s Commission for Higher Education, the coordinating agency charged with ensuring the state’s postsecondary education system is aligned to meet the needs of students and the state. Prior to joining the Commission, Lubbers served in the Indiana State Senate for 17 years, leading on education and economic development issues as Chair of the Senate Education and Career Development Committee. As Commissioner, Lubbers works to increase college completion, ensure academic quality and student learning and align postsecondary credentials with meaningful careers. She partners with policymakers and higher education leaders to develop and implement the state’s higher education strategic plans, including the Commission’s recently adopted fourth plan, “Reaching Higher in a State of Change.”

Lubbers is a past chair and a current member of both the State Higher Education Executive Officers and the Midwestern Higher Education Compact. She serves as Chair for both the National Council for State Authorization Reciprocity Agreements and Higher Learning Advocates Board of Directors. Additionally, she serves as a Commissioner for both the Education Commission of the States and the Postsecondary Value Commission, a member of the Advisory Council for both the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning and the Level Up Advisory Council and as the Chair of Indiana’s Governor’s Workforce Cabinet.

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About This Workshop

Join the Session Live: 

This presentation will highlight how Indiana high school students can gain a competitive advantage and jump-start on earning college credit while also fulfilling their high school diploma requirements. Earning college credit while in high school improves the likelihood that a high school graduate will persist in college after high school graduation. Let’s talk about it!

Although several Hoosiers are taking advantage of this amazing opportunity, many are being left behind. We will examine the dual credit and dual enrollment equity gaps. Educators will receive guidance on how they might play an integral role in working to close the achievement gap so that all students have an opportunity to benefit.

Peggy J. Surbey – Region 10 Manager, Indiana Department of Child Services.



Alonzo O Ross
Alonzo O Ross, MBA, is a motivational and collaborative educator passionate about providing educational access and opportunity to all students in Central Indiana. Alonzo’s real talk/front porch delivery style captivates and engages others, inspiring them to make a more significant impact on the lives of the students they serve. On the community engagement side, Alonzo is a 13-year active member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, where he serves as the Executive Director for the District of Indiana Alphas. Alonzo is a champion for mentorship, development, and empowerment. He believes in meeting people where they are and encouraging them to see their fullest potential. Alonzo received his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Indiana University East and his MBA from the University of Southern Indiana. Currently serves as the Director of Dual Enrollment and Transition at Ivy Tech Community College in Indianapolis. Alonzo is the Husband of Meghan and the father of 2 children, Zola and Noah.

About This Workshop

Join The Session Live:

Imparting Wisdom: HBCU Lessons for K-12 Education, details historically black colleges and universities’ (HBCUs) longstanding efforts to provide quality educational experiences for their students and how their success may be translated in K-12 schools. For decades, public education has implemented reforms specifically targeting students of color, but the sector continues to face challenges in improving academic outcomes.  However, HBCUs are often overlooked as sources of effective methods for producing high-achieving Black students, although their existence is based on this very premise.

HBCUs have been engines for ingenuity, academic excellence, and social justice for decades, and the strategies and practices they implement can inform educational practices and systems. As such, Imparting Wisdom uplifts research-based HBCU best practices, practical recommendations, and insights from HBCU leaders, with the goal of promoting mutually beneficial alliances between the K-12 and higher education communities.

Evelyn Pierce-Hicks, President National Sorority of Phil Delta Kappa, Inc. – Tau Chapter


Andrea Neely
For the past 15 years Andrea Neely, a native of Indianapolis has provided stellar leadership in her role as Area Development Director and for the past ten years as the Indianapolis Regional Development Director for UNCF.  Each year the UNCF helps more than 10,000 promising African American and other students of color go to and through college with scholarships, internships, and fellowships. Mrs. Neely manages office operations for Indiana and Ohio with annual campaigns of $2.5 million and other statewide initiatives.  Her leadership has resulted in $75 million being raised since 2006 to support the 37 UNCF colleges and universities and minority scholars that also attend Indiana state schools. This performance was recognized nationally by UNCF in 2019 as a top-performing office that has exceeded its annual campaign goal for the past five out of six years.  In 2016 the Indianapolis area office was the #1 Performing Area office in the country raising $26 million also in 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, and 2014 she was presented with the UNCF Award of Excellence for exceeding her annual fundraising goal.


Sekou Biddle
Sekou Biddle leads UNCF’s advocacy efforts to ensure more African American students will be college-ready and better prepared to enroll in and complete college by driving sustainable education reforms that benefit students and empower parents and communities to demand improvement. He manages UNCF’s advocacy platform, which includes three major components: grass-tops partnerships, grassroots engagement, and messaging and research.

He has more than 20 years of experience in urban public education reform and is a former at-large member of the District of Columbia City Council. He represented Wards 3 and 4 on the District of Columbia State Board of Education. As executive director of the southern region of Jumpstart for Young Children, he partnered trained adults in year-long relationships with pre-school-aged children to prepare them for success in school.


Dr. Meredith Anderson
Meredith Anderson, Ph.D. is the Director of Research in the K-12 Advocacy Department and Frederick D. Patterson Research Institute at UNCF, where she leads and designs empirical research related to K-12 education reform for African American students. Dr. Anderson has over 10 years of extensive research experience, including survey design and management, quantitative and qualitative analysis, and program evaluation.

Anderson’s publications have focused on race, educational inequities, African American community voice in education, and the influence of representation on grouping and tracking outcomes for African American male students. Meredith’s most recent publications for UNCF are: A Seat at the Table: African American Youth’s Perceptions of K-12 Education; Lift Every Voice and Lead: African American Leaders Perspectives of K-12 Education Reform; The Lift Every Voice and Lead Toolkit: A Community Leader’s Advocacy Resource for K-12 Education; Building Better Narratives in Black Education; and The Condition of College and Career Readiness 2015: African American Students.


Mr. Terrance Dixon

Mr. Dixon and his team members will build upon the University’s prior history of strong enrollment, and its current outstanding academic programs. Through comprehensive enrollment management, retention, and degree completion strategies designed to achieve ambitious enrollment goals, Mr. Dixon will continue to enhance academic quality, and elevate Shaw’s brand to higher levels of institutional distinction. With an unwavering focus on putting students first, this role will enhance the student experience from the first-time students learn about Shaw University through their graduation.

Prior to his appointment, Mr. Dixon served as Vice President of Enrollment Management at Morehouse College, in Atlanta, GA—the nation’s largest private liberal arts college for men. While serving at Morehouse, Dixon provided senior leadership and strategic direction for a comprehensive enrollment strategy that proved to be aggressive, responsive to new trends and markets, and consistent in meeting enrollment goals, mission, and strategic business objectives of the College. Dixon has served as Senior Educational Manager in Higher Education Services for the College Board, where he managed education outreach and service for admission and recruitment, financial aid, and advising and placement to colleges and universities in the southeastern region. Before entering higher education, he spent several years building a marketing career in positions at Delta Airlines, Dun and Bradstreet, and Enterprise Leasing Company

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