NCA 103rd Annual Convention: Our Legacy, Our Relevance
Thank you for making this year’s Annual Convention a success! We had more than 1,100 sessions, and more than 4,000 attendees. With our theme of “Our Legacy, Our Relevance,” this year was all about NCA making a difference within and beyond our membership. We tried some innovative things, and the efforts paid off.
This year, NCA took a risk by going to a new city. We have never had an NCA convention in Dallas. It is one of the more progressive cities in the United States, although this year we were confronted with much debate among our members, given recently proposed state legislation. This presented us with an opportunity to engage in civil dialogue about what social progress looks like, regardless of whether one’s political perspective tends to lean toward the conservative, liberal, or somewhere in between. We learned a lot from one another, and I think it enriched our understanding of the complexity of these issues, especially as we imagine how NCA ought to engage these concerns. There was robust discussion, and the effort that went into this was awesome.
Thanks to Kendall Hunt’s generous sponsorship and 140 volunteers, we held a Day of Service for only the second time in recent NCA history, stuffing 2,500 back sacks for local public schools with children in need. The school administrators were extremely grateful.
We debuted the NCA Legacy Scholarship, and it was truly gratifying to look into the eyes of this year’s recipient, Dierrica Smith, Midwestern State University, and know that, given the rising coat of college attendance, we made a difference in her life with a $1,000 college scholarship. We will hold an annual NCA Legacy Scholarship competition each year within the convention host city.
To the program planners, thank you! Thank you to everyone who helped organize and/or participated in our themed panels, unbound program series, and innovative efforts such as Lyrical Justice, Legacy Training and Professional Development Series, Leadership Accelerator Program, and Freedom Film Festival, as well as our annual slate of special series, including Scholars' Office Hours, G.I.F.T.S, Short Courses, Teachers on Teaching, Preconferences, Research in Progress Roundtables, Scholar to Scholar, and Seminars.
A special note of gratitude goes to Routledge, Taylor & Francis for sponsoring the NCA Opening Session. Thank you to Pearson for its continued sponsorship of the Carroll C. Arnold Distinguished Lecture. Catherine Squires delivered a phenomenal lecture. Thank you to Moody College of Communication at the University of Texas at Austin for its sponsorship of the convention bags.
Thank you to our NCA Welcome Reception sponsors: Baylor University, Dallas Baptist University, Lamar University, Sam Houston State University, Southern Methodist University, Texas A&M University, Texas Christian University, Texas State University, Texas Tech University, University of Houston, University of North Texas, and University of Texas at Austin.
Thank you to our Lyrical Justice sponsor, the Waterhouse Family Institute for the Study of Communication and Society.
I am especially grateful to the NCA national office staff and the Executive Committee for their planning efforts, and to our outgoing president Stephen J. Hartnett for his solid and innovative leadership.
NCA is made stronger because of who we are, what we stand for, and what we do collectively. Thank you!
- Ronald L. Jackson II, NCA First Vice President, University of Cincinnati