Call for Proposals: 2nd Annual TDC National Meeting, June 7-9, 2012, San Antonio

This is the Call for Proposals for The Democracy Commitment (TDC) National Meeting in San Antonio, Texas, June 7-9, 2012.

Proposals are due Monday, March 12, 2012, and are accepted on a rolling basis beginning December 16, 2011. Notifications will be made by Monday, March 26, 2012.

Please join us in San Antonio, Texas for our 2nd Annual The Democracy Commitment (TDC) National Meeting at the Marriott Rivercenter. The meeting begins on Thursday, June 7 and ends with a dinner Saturday evening, June 9. We have negotiated a hotel room rate of $185 for a single/double plus 16.75% tax (subject to change). Conference registration fees are $395 for students and $545 for individuals. Institutions may wish to take advantage of our team rate of $485 per person.

Registration is also open. Information about the agenda and hotel accommodations can be found at

The theme for this year’s meeting is: Civic Engagement 2.0: Re-Imagining, Strengthening and Deepening Our Civic Work. As TDC is sharing this conference with our sister organization, the American Democracy Project (ADP), it is pertinent to mention a recent ADP blog post where Jen Domagal-Goldman, the ADP National Manager, described the 2.0 efforts that Curt Brungardt, Director of the Center for Civic Leadership, and his colleagues are undertaking at Fort Hays State University (Kan.). Inspired by web 2.0 applications (e.g., social media, blogs, Wikis) that are not only the next iteration of an existing application, but also facilitate collaboration, information sharing, and user-centered design, Curt and his colleagues are considering the following questions during a year-long continuous improvement exercise:

  • Are we doing the right things to develop citizenship?
  • Are we doing them effectively?
  • How can we improve our student and staff programming?
  • Do our program activities produce the desired outcomes?

Our 2nd national meeting will be a space for us to re-imagine, strengthen and deepen our civic work in ways that move the preparation of informed, engaged citizens for our democracy from margin to center on our campuses.

Civic Engagement 2.0 presentations might consider questions such as:

  • How can we make existing civic education and engagement efforts more student and citizen-centered?
  • What can we do to make TDC more interactive, participative and discovery driven?
  • How can we harness new technologies to engage more students and/or to make our teaching and programming more effective?

THIS IS A CALL FOR PROPOSALS. We are interested in presentations that address both theoretical and practical issues: concepts of citizenship, civic engagement and democracy in higher education and in successful programs, partnerships and practices. When submitting proposals about programs, partnerships and practices, please be sure that you address analysis as well as description: what worked and what didn’t; what were the issues encountered during implementation; how was a partnership established; etc. We are particularly interested in topics that focus specifically on institutionalizing citizen preparation, civic learning, and engagement. This is not a traditional academic conference. We are interested in sessions that go beyond merely presenting a set of activities and instead describe step-by-step strategies for driving civic engagement work deeper into the heart of the higher education enterprise.

We are seeking Presenters for concurrent panel sessions and workshops and for a poster session. To submit a proposal for a presentation or poster, please complete this Online Proposal Submission FormStudents are strongly encouraged to submit proposals for presentations.

Presentation sessions are 1 hour and 15 minutes in length, with a moderator/time keeper and approximately 3 presentations. Individual presentations should not exceed 10 minutes. Handouts are encouraged. LCD projectors for PowerPoint presentations will be available.

This year we’re adding a poster session to the program. This is a great way for students to participate in the conference and a way to showcase a program, initiative, partnership, or undergraduate research or service project. During the poster session, all poster presenters will have the opportunity to talk with and answer questions of conference participants about their posters. Posters should be on standard 24″x36″ foam core board (easel size) and must be brought with presenters to the conference.

We will be offering workshops this year, which are highly interactive and discussion-focused sessions.  They can be stand-alone, or can extend over more than one time period. Workshops are process rather than content focused. It is very important that the time needed for the workshop is specified in the proposal. While LCD projectors for PowerPoint presentations are available, we highly encourage workshops with dynamic concepts and high levels of interaction.

Please note: If you submit a presentation in which you are the sole presenter and your proposal is accepted, your presentation will be placed in a concurrent session with other presentations on a similar topic. If you would like to link your presentation to another proposal(s) (from your institution, from colleagues at other institutions, community partners, etc.), please note this in the online proposal form.

Once you submit a proposal, you are agreeing to present during any of the time slots allotted during the June 7-9, 2012 program. We will notify you of your exact presentation time not later than Monday, March 26th, 2012.

The purpose of these sessions is to allow a substantial number of strategies and ideas to be presented in a short period of time, leaving time in each session for questions, discussion and dialogue.

Proposals are due by March 12, 2012. However, proposals can be submitted immediately. We use a rolling acceptance process, which means that proposals will be evaluated and decisions made weekly, so the earlier the submission, the sooner you will know if your proposal has been accepted. This early acceptance process may provide you with an opportunity to identify a source of funding support sooner, as well as to help clarify your summer plans.

If you have any questions about the submission process, please contact Amee Bearne at 202.478.4675 or

We look forward to learning and working with you. We hope to see you at our 2nd annual conference!