The greatest higher education technology conference in the universe takes place next week. The EDUCAUSE Annual Conference  is simply amazing. As the epicenter of higher education and technology, this event offers up something for anyone who works in higher education. Ok, I know that I sound like an extreme fanboy right now, but trust me, this is an outrageously fabulous event. On my meeting calendar I've scheduled conversations with representatives from Pearson, Blackboard, Desire2Learn, AT&T*, and Ellucian. The amount of information that will be disseminated at EDUCAUSE is staggering. Major product announcements, press embargoes, non-disclosure agreements, and an enormous exhibit hall…EDUCAUSE is the most jam-packed event of the year for the ed tech crowd.
Last year , EDUCAUSE offered up some of coveted floor space on the show floor for a group of ed tech start-ups. Dubbed "Start-Up Alley  (SUA)," representatives from some up-and-coming companies were able to talk shop with attendees. This year, an additional component was added to SUA in the form of a competition called the "EDUCAUSE Game Changers Business Competition ." Co-hosted by Google, selected SUA participants will present their "business plans, along with their product and services" and "demonstrate how their start-up identified a higher education problem or challenge, validated this issue, and applied technology to create tools and solutions." The prize for the winning start-up will be "marketing-related prizes from both EDUCAUSE and Google."
This year at EDUCAUSE, a new group of technology professionals will have their first-ever meeting. The Student Affairs IT Constituent Group  will hold a meeting on Thursday, November 8th at 2:40PM. This is the first time that EDUCAUSE has had a group focused on student affairs and technology. I'm practically giddy! The creator of the group, David Sweeney , was at this year's NASPA Technology Conference  (It was fantastic!) so I'm predicting the continuation of some conversations that took place at that event.
By the way, if you're wondering why I'm meeting with AT&T and not your company (the others in my list have developed a relationship with me since 2010 ), you should probably read my post from last year where I talk about how to craft an engaging PR pitch . The pitch for AT&T that I received from Irasema Romero  was captivating, relevant, and thoughtful.
Safe travels to Denver!
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