Register for the Spring 2021 CAC event

Twice a year dozens of professionals in the field of e-learning travel to Bloomsburg Pennsylvania to attend the Department of Instructional Technology and Institute for Interactive Technologies’ (IIT) Corporate Advisory Council (CAC) Conference.

The three-day event provides corporate professionals with an opportunity to see the latest in e-learning software, learn the latest thinking about learning and to become educated in instructional technology as well as give back to the field. The event allows professionals in the field to directly interact with students who are preparing to become instructional designers and developers. The students prepare a 20 minute presentation and are then asked questions by the Corporate Advisory Council members, in turn, the students and CAC members interact, exchange ideas and learn about the field in the energetic three-day event.

The first day of the conference is a showcase of the latest and greatest e-learning technology. Individuals from multimedia development firms, l arge corporations, and e-learning companies present e-learning software to each other and to current students for comments and critique. It allows individuals attending the event to gain a glimpse into the e-learning projects and products of other organizations. Some of the firms presenting in the past include Merck Pharmaceuticals, Booz Allen Hamilton, and entrepreneurial firms started by alumni and many others. Companies “show off” for potential interns and employees by showcasing their e-learning products.

The second day provides a truly unique experience for corporate professionals. On the second day, graduate students who have been working for 10 weeks on an e-learning Request For Proposal (RFP) present their recommendation to the corporate professionals who role-play the part of a client. The students present the recommendations and a working prototype of the training. They then participate in a 15-minute question and answer session. The professionals ask students about their technical solution, instructional solution and proposed budget. The students, in turn, must defend their work and provide reasons for certain recommendations. The professionals gain insight into the e-learning industry as well as learn about the capabilities of the students. Many professionals indicate that they are able to learn a great deal about the technical aspects of e-learning from the student research and presentations.

After the presentations, the students and the professionals share a meal together and discuss the various aspects of the e-learning field. The meal is an opportunity for professionals and students to discuss the e-learning industry in an informal and relaxed atmosphere and to get to know each other a little better.

The third day is when the IIT presents information about its curriculum and projects to solicit input from the field. The professionals have the opportunity to provide ideas and direction into the course of studies at the IIT. In addition, the students present projects that they have been working on for government, corporate, healthcare and educational organizations. This provides the students with a second opportunity to present to the CAC. After the presentation, the CAC members who are looking to hire multimedia or e-learning developers conduct interviews with the students and extend internship or job offers.

The CAC Conference is a win-win event. The students win because they get to see leading edge e-learning software and gain insight and feedback from actual corporate professionals. In addition, they get an opportunity to interview with professionals who have seen the work that they are capable of performing. The professionals win because they are able to see leading edge e-learning software, network with other multimedia professionals and learn about writing and responding to RFPs for e-learning. Professionals also gain insight into the general direction of the e-learning industry and how are given the opportunity to interview students after having observed them in a professional, high-pressure environment. The program wins because the professionals indicate which areas to emphasize and which areas need to be strengthened. Often new software is introduced to attendees through the CAC event. This keeps the program state-of-the-industry.