Chapter News

Experience Design at Education Conference June 2017 in NYC

Ken Edhammer, CMP

Ken Edhammer, CMP, Senior Sales Manager at Carmel Valley Ranch, took time out of his busy schedule to answer a few questions we had about EduCon. 

What did you like most about the PCMA EduCon this year?

The high quality education, the amazing networks/bonds that are built over the course of 4 days, but mostly was this new immersive learning activity that PCMA tried. They split everyone up into 8 different groups based upon a question you answered during registration which was about what topic(s) interested you most. PCMA then built 8 different tracks away from the main meeting space by utilizing unique and iconic NYC event spaces. Mine was in the New Amsterdam Theater and we learned how to create a successful and succinct plan from start to finish on how to execute programs and how marketing can be used successfully to continue and drive the vision so that every stakeholder knows exactly what the plan is at any given moment during the project.

Who was your favorite speaker? And Why?

Melissa Jones Briggs from Stanford. Her topic was Failing Hard and Bouncing Back Like a Boss. The topic, and how she presented to both the in room audience, as well as the online audience, was thoughtful, well delivered, and really resonated with a lot of attendees in the room. I walked away with the thought that it is okay to fail sometimes, but use that failure to re-strategize and re-focus, but most of all learn from the failure.

How was NYC as a meeting destination? 

It’s NYC!!! Come on, how could you not love the destination. The opening reception was at Rockefeller Center, and the closing reception was at the Central Park Zoo!

What makes the EduCon different from attending Convening Leaders?

The education! PCMA is not afraid to try new ideas, themes, or topics on how to drive high content education for all of their attendees. 

Our theme for this newsletter is Design.   Specifically Experiential Design.    How did the EduCon use XD in the meeting experience.

PCMA used the immersive education experience to really drive the experiential design. Some groups went to Tavern on the Green, some to the Javitz Convention Center, Microsoft, and more. They went above and beyond to create 8 different venue spaces, and 8 different outcomes. It was great.

Lastly-  One word you can use to describe the EduCon to someone that has never participated.

That’s hard because there are so many words to describe EduCon. I would have to go with Exceptional! Everyone should go to EduCon, its more intimate in nature in comparison to Convening Leaders with about 800-900 people vs 5,000. Much tighter bonds can be built with the smaller groups. The outstanding education and PCMA staff make this a must attend event.


Adrienne FisherExperience Design at Education Conference June 2017 in NYC