#2020EPICN Free Webinar Series

Last Updated: 1:16 PM CT 7/4/20

It’s official. The EPIC-Network transitioned its 2020 EPIC-Network Conference to a free webinar series. Below is the current list of online events. Click the respective “webinar information” once posted to find registration links for each individual event. See the announcement about this transition here. This is a brand new format for our staff and presenters so please contact EPIC-N Staff at 608-709-8644 or email info@epicn.org if you experience any difficulties.

The #2020EPICN Free Webinar Series ended June 30, 2020. Free access to the event’s recordings and resources are now available only to EPIC-N Members. Membership is now FREE to assist in the global response and recovery to COVID-19. Sign up today to gain access to the recordings and resources from this event and all of the other benefits associated with EPIC-N Membership*.

*Read about the benefits and non-financial terms of membership.

SCHEDULE

Monday, April 13

12:00 PM CT | Full Schedule, Award Finalists, & Presenter Information Published
Online website publication. No live engagement scheduled for this event, but please link this content once released to continue the conversation on social media using #2020EPICN.
On Your Own | Watch the EPIC Model video & Emily Pilloton’s TED Talk
Online website publication.
As organizers prepared for the in-person conference scheduled to take place at Indiana University Bloomington, they planned to host Emily Pilloton as the keynote for the event. With the transition to an online webinar series, organizers still want to frame this year’s theme of “EPIC-N for All” with her expertise. Before participating in the other events, please watch the EPIC Model video and Emily’s TED Talk (both listed below) to hone our discussions and focus on how EPIC-N, universities, and local governments can design our efforts to better support the communities who most need it. Organizers find this content even more relevant now amidst COVID-19’s spread.

Learn more about the EPIC Model here.

Learn more about Emily Pilloton here.

Friday, April 17

12:00 – 1:00 PM CT | Running on a Small Budget: Benefits of Tiny EPIC-N Programs | Model Adaptation
Workshop for new and existing university audiences
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources
If you feel limited by small city budgets and low availability of university financial support, should you give up on starting an EPIC-N program? Not at all! Where there is a will there is way. Depending on your level of interest, your connections and how you manage it, you can run a program with relatively small financial backing ($25 K). This session addresses the successes, perils and pitfalls of limited funding and it will invite audience participation throughout. In it we will discuss sources of funding (particularly small funding) and how it may be the only option for some programs. We will necessarily address the role that funding plays in various programs and both the advantages and disadvantages of different funding levels.
Speaker: Dan Fernandez, Program Director, CSU-Monterey Bay
2:00 PM CT | Engaging Students through External Grants and Internal Programs (Finding More Funding) | Technical Session
Presentation recording for existing university and existing local government/community audiences
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources.
No live engagement scheduled for this event, but please link this content once released to continue the conversation on social media using #2020EPICN.
This session was originally recorded in December last year for established programs that are looking for ways to scale up their efforts. In this session, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s Successful Communities Collaborative leader Connie Frey Spurlock presents on how her EPIC program has been able to use external grants and internal programming to do just that. She begins by sharing about how they have leveraged USDA, EPA, and NEH grants to enhance partnerships with municipalities and other community organizations. From there, she reviews efforts to engage with internal program opportunities, including working with interns, practicum students, and student organizations to enhance partnerships. Additionally, she discusses methods for recruiting students who are not enrolled in project-matched courses.
Speakers: Connie Frey Spurlock, Director, SIU-Edwardsville

Tuesday, April 21

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM CT | Indiana University Feature: Sustaining rural partnerships | Model Adaptation
Workshop for new and existing university and local government/community audiences
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources
Speakers from the Indiana University’s Center for Rural Engagement Sustaining Hoosier Communities initiative will share about their experiences launching an EPIC program and managing their EPIC-N projects which focus on supporting rural communities and their residents.
Speaker: Jane Rogan and Jacob Simpson, Indiana University Bloomington
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM CT | Scoping Projects with Design Thinking and Root Cause Analysis to Inform Problem-Framing | Technical Session
Workshop for new and existing university and local government/community audiences
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources
This session will cover the process of scoping projects once they are pitched to an EPIC program. I hope to teach participants about tools they can use to “Drill down” into projects that sound too vague in the beginning.
1. Introduce problem scoping
2. Brief overview of design thinking and root cause analysis
3. Showcase UW-Madison’s “Pre-Engagement Workbook” that takes these concepts and presents them in an easy-to-follow manual for our local partners
4. Discuss different scenarios for how to use these tools based on our recent experience doing this process with several communities
5. Practice these skills with an activity (meant to mimic a real scenario)
6. Discuss ways to improve the process
This is in line with the theme “EPIC for All!” because the scoping process helps to clarify projects and get closer to higher-quality deliverables. This is also a practical tool for members (new and seasoned) to use in their programs. We will also be working on improving this process and will make the result available to everyone in the network.
Speakers: Gavin Luter, Managing Director, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Friday, April 24

9:00 AM CT | Connecting Co-Curricular Resources | Technical Session
Presentation recording for new and existing university audiences
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources
No live engagement scheduled for this event, but please link this content once released to continue the conversation on social media using #2020EPICN.
EPIC-N and its programs strive to unlock unimaginable potential by uniting university resources with community-identified needs. The EPIC Model requires that existing courses—their faculty and participating students—are the backbone of this collaboration. There are some EPIC programs, however, who have unlocked connections between co-curricular groups on campus to offer partnering towns, cities, counties, and community groups access to even more resources and value. The “Connecting Co-Curricular Resources,” webinar featuring University of Mississippi’s McLean Institute Associate Director, Laura Martin, and M Partner VISTA, Taylor Robertson, was recorded previous to the #2020EPICN Webinar Series. The conversation highlights case studies from M Partner’s first two years of operation at the University of Mississippi. Laura’s management of the program led to over 60 discrete projects, special events, programs, and national service partnerships across three M Partner communities. Watch the recording to learn about all of their amazing work and how they make it happen.
Speakers: Laura Martin, Associate Director, University of Mississippi; Taylor Robertson, Americorps VISTA, University of Mississippi

Tuesday, April 28

10:00 AM CT | Award Winners Announced | Website publication
See the winners and finalist information here.
No live engagement scheduled for this event, but please use a social media post linking this content to continue the conversation on social media using #2020EPICN.
10:30 – 11:30 AM CT | EPIC-N Tools & Support for High Road Development in Communities | Technical Session
Workshop for new and existing university audiences
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources
This session will briefly cover tools and resources that may be of use to programs, faculty, students, and local government/community leaders involved in EPIC programs.
Speaker: Joel Rogers, EPIC-Network

Wednesday April 29

10:30 – 4:30 PM CT | Project Cities Virtual Showcase | External Event
See Event Information Here.
This semester ASU’s Project Cities (an EPIC-N program) is hosting their first-ever fully virtual showcase event. Many EPIC-N programs do end of academic year events to highlight the work completed for their local government/community partner(s). This year, due to COVID-19, the event is now virtual and scheduled during the #2020EPICN webinar series. The Project Cities team invites any EPIC-N program to attend.

Thursday, April 30

8:00 AM CT – 5:00 PM CT | Friends of the EPIC-Network: Release Day | Online and YouTube website publication
Interview recordings for new and existing university and local government/community audiences
Click here to find published recordings.
No live engagement scheduled for this event, but please use a social media post linking this content to continue the conversation on social media using #2020EPICN.
As EPIC-N grows, it comes into contact with amazing people and their organizations across the globe. Some of these organizations administer programs that anyone doing university-local government-community partnerships should consider adding to the network. Please view these interviews on the EPIC-N YouTube channel.
Speakers: Melissa Goodwin, Thriving Earth Exchange; Maya Pace, Lead for America
2:00 – 3:00 PM CT | Friends of the EPIC-Network: CivicSpark
Interview for new and existing university and local government/community audiences
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources.
To improve the support provided to the EPIC programs, EPIC-N is now producing a series of interviews of friends of the network! These friends may be leaders in local communities, national organizations with specific resources to offer, or individuals with inspiring stories to share.

CivicSpark is the State of California’s Governor’s Initiative AmeriCorps program dedicated to building capacity for local public agencies to address community resilience issues such as climate change, water resource management, housing, and mobility. CivicSpark is a program of the Local Government Commission in partnership with the State of California through the Office of Planning and Research, and California Volunteers. Each year, CivicSpark recruits 90 Fellows to build local public agency capacity throughout the state for 11 months. During their service year, CivicSpark Fellows implement a needed sustainability and resilience project, while also building long-term capacity to ensure the work is sustained after their service year is completed. Kif will share about how the network of CivicSpark and university-local government partnerships can work together.

Even if you are not located in California, consider attending this presentation to gain information about how you can identify and partner with similar organizations in your area to increase your local government’s capacity and/or your program’s impact.
Speaker: Kif Scheuer, CivicSpark Program Director, Local Government Commission

Friday, May 1

12:00 – 1:00 PM CT | A Tale of Two Cities & Rockport Strong: Planning for Resilience | Pecha Kucha
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources
This session highlights two amazing stories of what EPIC programs can accomplish. The first presenter will showcase the success, challenges, and opportunities CSUMB’s Sustainable City Year Program found working with two city partners at the same time. The second shares how, in the wake of Hurricane Harvey, the City of Rockport partnered with the Texas Target Communities (TxTC) program to update the city’s comprehensive plan mindful of the challenges and issues of recovery. TxTC connected with students and faculty to tackle a host of community-identified issues related to resilience. The presentation will provide an overview of the TxTC community engagement process, and discuss the multiple interdisciplinary partnerships formed and the recommendations made.
Speakers: Dan Fernandez, Program Director, CSU-Monterey Bay; Jeewasmi Thapa, Program Coordinator, Texas A&M

Monday, May 4

11:00 – 12:00 PM CT | EPIC Africa May Call | Training for using EPIC-N resources now available to assist with COVID-19 response
Click here for RSVP and Webinar Information
This is a monthly call to connect and build relationships between leaders in the EPIC Africa Network as they grow and support their EPIC Model partnership programmes to unite universities and local governments to improve the quality of life for all. Agendas will be posted shortly before the call. All can access these documents before, during, and after the event. The call-in information provided by the conference software programme “Zoom” will be provided in the calendar invite. EPIC-Network staffers administer the call and provide technical assistance. Email info@epicn.org to request assistance.
Speaker: Marshall Curry, Program Manager, EPIC-N

Thursday, May 7

10:00 – 11:30 AM CT | Hope Wanted: From Rust to Sustainability: Exploration of the EPIC Model in a rust belt and rural communities | Model Adaptation
Workshop for new and existing university and local government/community audiences
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources.
The majority of municipalities and communities in the world are rural. Medium cities to large urban hubs are few in number in comparison. Facing rusting infrastructure, divestment, and out-migration, communities from Spain, to Pennsylvania, to Washington are looking for answers to sustain livability. This session provides a scenario workshop for participants to brainstorm effective strategies for working in communities with minimal resources. Representatives from Pennsylvania State University, Leon Spain, and the University of Washington will highlight three different cases in which they are poised to begin EPIC-N partnerships, but with questions about how to move forward in municipalities and communities faced with hardships. After the case stories are presented, and drawing on the experience of those in the room, participants will work as a team and reflect on how to assess community readiness for engagement (key indicators or hallmarks to look for), promising points of departure (where to begin), successful community strategies, partnering with other colleges and universities in the same community (sharing the work), and setting realistic expectations. Participants are encouraged to bring their own context to the table for advice from the room. The session goal is for participants to leave feeling better prepared to employ the EPIC Model with communities that have experienced significant economic decline. This event will be the content for the May EPIC-Network call.
Speakers: Ilona Ballreich, Program Manager, Penn State University; Branden Born, Co-Director, University of Washington; Eric Ewell, Director of Continuing Education, Penn State University Greater Allegheny; Dan Fernandez, Program Director, CSU-Monterey Bay; Aaron Whigham, Director of Strategic Initiatives at Penn State University Greater Allegheny

Tuesday, May 12

11:00 – 12:00 PM CT | Adapting the EPIC Model to Institutional Context | Model Adaptation
Presentation will be recorded ahead of time and published at this time for new and existing university audiences. Join Marshall Curry, EPIC-N Program Manager for a live discussion of the presentation.
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources
This presentation will explore the question of how to adapt the EPIC Model to the needs of higher education institutions with various missions, sizes, and strengths. Maria will share a case study of adapting the EPIC Model to the University of St. Thomas, a mission-driven liberal arts institution, through the founding and development of the Sustainable Communities Partnership (SCP). She will discuss adaptations of the model including a multi-year partnership structure and on-campus partnerships. Maria will also share an arts-based initiative, SCP Arts, that enriches the public’s engagement with partners’ sustainability goals through collaboration with local artists. Finally, strategies for adapting the EPIC Model to different contexts, while still achieving the overarching goals of an EPIC partnership will be discussed. The session will conclude with an interactive discussion of potential adaptations of the EPIC Model to session participants’ institutions.
Speaker:
Maria Dahmus, Director, University of St. Thomas

Tuesday, May 28

1:30-2:30 PM | Report Writing Best Practices for EPIC-N Programs Technical Session
Presentation for new and existing university, and new local government/community audiences
Click here for Webinar Recording and Shared Resources.
It’s the end of the semester and it’s time to start on that class summary report. You have ten student papers, zero extra hours in the day, and minimal resources to write it. Now… GO! Join this panel discussion to hear from different programs on their structure and approach to summary report production; what works, what doesn’t and what can we do better? How do you pull off high-quality, value-add reports in a timely manner?
Speakers: Gavin Luter, Managing Director, UniverCity Alliance, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Kristofer Patron-Soberano, Program Administrator, San Diego State University; Steve Russell, Program Manager, Arizona State University

Monday, June 1

11:00 – 12:00 PM CT | EPIC Africa June Call | Program Updates and Update on Resources Available
Click here for RSVP and Webinar Information
This is a monthly call to connect and build relationships between leaders in the EPIC Africa Network as they grow and support their EPIC Model partnership programmes to unite universities and local governments to improve the quality of life for all. Agendas will be posted shortly before the call. All can access these documents before, during, and after the event. The call-in information provided by the conference software programme “Zoom” will be provided in the calendar invite. EPIC-Network staffers administer the call and provide technical assistance. Email info@epicn.org to request assistance.
Speaker: Marshall Curry, Program Manager, EPIC-N

Thursday, June 4

1:30 – 3:00 PM CT | EPIC-Network June Call | Amidst COVID-19, Celebrating Accomplishments Together
Click here for RSVP and Webinar Information
This month’s call, each participant will be asked to share your favorite success story from your year to inspire attendees into the summer and next academic year. EPIC-N facilitates this conference call for individuals involved in an EPIC program to connect and learn from one another. This call is open to anyone looking to start, support, and/or improve an EPIC program. The audience of the call may change slightly from month to month. The RSVP form will note which audience is of focus for each call. Organizers use Zoom conference and video call software to connect parties. Currently, the call takes place monthly on the first Thursday of the month at 1:30 PM CT. If that time does not work for you, please RSVP and inform us of the conflict.

Other Sessions TBA

EPIC-N is currently communicating with other speakers who may join this event. As they finalize webinar information, it will be published on this page.
Speaker(s):
TBA

Tuesday, June 30

11:59 PM CT | #2020EPICN Webinar Series Ends | Recordings removed from this website page
This free event will end on June 30. At that time, the recordings from this event will be moved to the EPIC-N Member Commons for EPIC Member Programs’ use. To gain access to the EPIC-N Member Commons and view these resources once they are moved the Member Commons, contact EPIC-N’s Program Manager Marshall Curry at mcurry@epicn.org or 608-709-8644.

Webinar Formats

Webinars will be about 30 minutes of presentation (at most) followed by 30 minutes (usually) for Q&A and/discussion. Conference organizers encouraged proposals to build highly engaging presentations. Please review the types below:

Workshop – A session that focuses on learning by doing, allowing participants time to work individually or together.

Presentation – A session that has one presenter diving deeply into a certain subject. Audience engagement or activities are encouraged.

Pecha Kucha – A presentation format traditionally done at the EPIC-Network Conference. Historically these are done by program managers highlighting exciting individual projects. Learn more about this format here

Questions about the Schedule?

Host and conference staff are ready to help. Email your questions to info@epicn.org or call 608-709-8644.