NAIS Online Annual Conference Signature Experiences

New in 2021: Enroll in one of our Signature Experiences.

NAIS invites you to take part in our Annual Conference in a new and exciting way. Our Signature Experiences are focused explorations of urgent themes: wellness, DEI, or innovation. Each experience is capped at 200 attendees and arranged in cohorts of 50. At no additional cost, each track includes intensive workshops, deep discussions, and incisive presentations on your chosen theme—and you still have access to the conference’s keynote speakers and robust social programming. 

Register for the conference now, and you can choose to participate in either the original NAIS Annual Conference experience or a Signature Experience that focuses on one of three topics:

Healthy and Safe Independent Schools: Protect, Heal, Grow

How do you sustain a healthy campus community? What does wellness look like during—and after—the pandemic? How can wellness become not simply a program but a culture? In this Signature Experience, we’ll take a holistic, integrated approach to health and wellness, offering fresh perspectives, inspiring resources, and a grounded vision of what’s possible. Join experts and colleagues to learn about these topics and to discuss possible solutions. Build your network, leverage the experience of the community, and focus the work of your school around wellness.

  This Signature Experience is sponsored by SchoolPass.

See this Signature Experience's workshops here (opens in a new tab or window). 

Truth, DEI, and the Path to Transformation (registration is full*)

What does leadership in DEI look like today—and tomorrow? How can you put DEI and social justice at the center of your school’s daily work and long-term vision? How do school communities move from reform to transformation? In this Signature Experience, we’ll explore ways to make progress in an essential field, sharing our struggles and triumphs, our bold plans, and practical steps forward. Seize this moment to help our schools engage in the complicated conversations that examine what brought us here: systemic racism and white privilege. Build and strengthen your climate and community, engage in challenging and meaningful conversations, examine where we are today, and invite a hopeful look toward a future where truth can lead us to greater unity, institutional strength, and transformation.

See this Signature Experience's workshops here (opens in a new tab or window). 


Future-Forward Innovation: Connection, Care, and Capacity (registration is full*)

How do you make substantive change—and still stay true to your mission? What’s the difference between following a trend and adapting to a new reality? How can you help your community see innovation not as an ongoing threat but as an organic practice? Join us as we explore the future learner, educator, and school, and foster innovation as a disposition, not simply a destination. In this Signature Experience, we’ll look at innovation at the ground level—and from 30,000 feet. 
This Signature Experience is sponsored by Blackbaud.

See this Signature Experience's workshops here (opens in a new tab or window). 

Signature Experience FAQs

Q. What is the difference between registering for the NAIS Annual Conference and a Signature Experience?

In both cases, you are registering for the NAIS Annual Conference—now there are two ways to experience it. The original conference experience allows you the flexibility to plan your own schedule and the topics you want to explore; opting for the Signature Experience additionally provides exclusive workshops and small group discussions around a specific topic. 

Q. Does the Signature Experience cost more?

No, it’s first-come, first-served, and does not cost more to attend.

Q. Where can I see the schedule?

Go to the Conference Program page, where you will see Signature Experience events on the right-hand side of the table. All attendees will participate in some of the same aspects of the conference, like keynote speakers, social events, and some workshop programming, while Signature Experience participants will also participate in a dedicated large group workshop, followed by small group discussions in a dedicated cohort group.

Q. Who is the intended audience for a Signature Experience?

Any independent school educator who is passionate and engaged around a Signature Experience topic. No matter your role or whether you consider yourself an expert or a beginner, all you need to bring is your enthusiasm for learning, growing, and connecting with other like-minded educators. There is no special preparation involved to attend, but you will be asked to be a dedicated participant who attends all parts of your Signature Experience.

Q. Can I switch to a Signature Experience from the general conference or vice versa?

If you want to change your registration type to a Signature Experience or back to a general Annual Conference experience, you may do so by contacting our registration partner, Maritz, at [email protected] or 864-342-6259. Signature Experiences registrations are capped at 200 each, and so are subject to availability. 

*Q: What if a Signature Experience is full?

If your choice of Signature Experience is full, there is a waitlist that you can join within the registration system. Because spots are limited, the waitlist is first-come, first-served and we cannot offer a guarantee of admittance. We encourage you to still register for the general conference or a different Signature Experience.