Summer Seminar Highlights

Nearly 190 educators from across (and outside of) Arkansas gathered at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Little Rock to "Rock the Capital." These facilitators attended Tech Camp (which included a new, optional Industry Tour) and Summer Seminar all in an effort to find ways of helping students as they use technology to solve community problems. In the process they learned from the EAST Initiative staff, industry professionals, each other and even students as they tackled new tech, talked classroom best practices and met new potential community partners to work with as their classes take on service outreach.

Group Photo

This year’s event saw the launch of a EAST-made app for the event, a new tool to help attendees track the matrix of staggered and repeating breakout sessions, which gave attendees better flexibility in making their schedules. The event once again featured the popular Playground, at which participants could engage in a quick lessons about some of the coolest technologies available to the classroom. The intent, of course, is for EAST to offer the best professional development to be found anywhere, and educators said 2017 was a success on that front.

However, Summer Seminar isn’t only about learning. It’s also about having fun! This year’s event offered a Casino Night and a Night on the Town for evening activities.

We here at EAST appreciate the time and efforts of the Holiday Inn staff and the folks at the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau as they helped to make our extended family of facilitators feel welcome in our own backyard. We hope everyone had a blast and left the capital ready to rock the upcoming school year!

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Industry Tour

New to this year’s event was an optional Industry Tour, offered as an alternative to Tech Camp. The day-long chartered adventure included stops at Interstate Signways, the Little Rock Port Authority, Georg Fischer Harvel and Ring Container Technologies. Thanks to these businesses for allowing our facilitators in to learn about their processes and the technology skills they’re looking for in future employees.

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It’s alway fun to say "job well done," especially when everybody around knows just how much work went into that job. We offer our kudos (along with pins and certificates) to those facilitators who have served in EAST classrooms for 5, 10 and 15 years. We’re getting close to seeing some hit the 20-year mark, too, and we can’t wait! We’re going to need to order some new pins!

15 Year Recipients

15 Year Recipients

  • Kim Austin, Greenbrier High School
  • Mike Mason, Calico Rock High School
  • Sandy Williams, Dardanelle High School
  • John Diesel, Greeland High School (not pictured)
  • Scott Jones, Omaha High School (not pictured)
10 Year Recipients

10 Year Recipients

  • Tracie Ashley, Prairie Grove Middle School
  • Traci Britt, Lake Hamilton High School
  • Jennie Coy, Joe T. Robinson Middle School
  • Brian Davis, Beebe Middle School
  • Joy Sites, Beebe Junior High School (not pictured)
  • Jodi Keith, Indian Capital Technology Center - Sallisaw (not pictured)
5 Year Recipients

5 Year Recipients

  • Mark Alvarez, Greenland Middle School
  • Beth Beam, Bauxite Schools (not pictured)
  • Josh Beauchamp, Conwell Egan Catholic High School (not pictured)
  • Melanie Cobb, Ashdown High School (not pictured)
  • Cindy Dunn, Lamar High School
  • Melody Gilleran, Fountain Lake High School (not pictured)
  • Sarah Henderson, Batesville Junior High School
  • Brad James, Green Forest Schools
  • Allison Kisselburg, Prescott High School
  • Randy Osnes, Farmington High School
  • Erin Rappold, Vilonia High School
  • Kevin Shinn, Huntsville High School
  • Margaret Sims, Centerpoint High School
  • Dana Sumter, Russellville Junior High School
  • Stan Whisnant, North Little Rock High School

Social Media

It pays to follow the EAST Initiative on social media! Congratulations to the following winners, who were randomly chosen from qualified entries who replied to giveaway posts during the event.

  • Kelly Falkner
  • Josh Worthy
  • Erin Rappold
  • Ashley Dunavan
  • Brooke Chapman
  • Flipgrid
  • Kelly Regan
  • Carman McBride
View Top Social Wall Posts

Evening Events

Casino Night

Casino Night

Thanks to Arkansas Casino Events, participants were able to try their luck at blackjack, craps, roulette and more. Complimentary chips were wagered in an attempt to build a big stack, which could be traded in for tickets that offered a chance to win fabulous prizes. Congrats to the winners who had Lady Luck on their side!

Night on the Town

On the second night of the seminar, participants were invited to explore the dining and entertainment options of the capital city’s thriving River Market District, complete with special offers and discounts arranged by the Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau. Participants also found their way to the SOMA district and its new Mystery Mansion escape rooms… and some even found their way out, too!

Night on the town

A Big Thanks To...

Summer Seminar would not have been what it was without the help of some very dedicated folks. The EAST Initiative would like to offer thanks to the following:

Facilities & Evening Entertainment

  • Holiday Inn Little Rock Conference Center
  • Little Rock Convention and Visitors Bureau
  • Little Rock Port Authority
  • Georg Fischer Harvel LLC
  • Interstate SignWays
  • RING Container Technologies

Presenters, Exhibitors & Guests

  • Adrian Driscoll, Driscoll Entertainment
  • Alan Watson
  • Alicia Bell, Armorel High School
  • Allison Aday, Kiamichi Technology Centers - Eufaula High School
  • Ashley Dunavan, Pinkston Middle School
  • Ashley Moses, Volunteer AR / Arkansas Department of Human Services
  • Aspen Ham, Hot Springs Middle School
  • Becca Martin, Hackler Intermediate School
  • Ben Manatt, Bentonville High School
  • Bob Ocken, Bob Ocken Photography
  • Brandon Guillot, Unmanned Aerial Solutions of Arkansas
  • Brian Culpepper, CAST
  • Brittany Berry, Helen Tyson Middle School
  • Brooke Chapman, Westside High School
  • Carman McBride, Roberts Elementary School
  • Dr. Christina Standerfer, University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service
  • Chuck Hollis, Crossett Middle School
  • Dan Boroughs, Russellville High School
  • Dana Sumter, Russellville Junior High School
  • Derek Ratchford, Sonora Middle School
  • Drew Wallis, NWA3D
  • Dustin Rhodes, LEGO Education
  • EAST at Mountain Home High School
  • EAST at Mountain Home Junior High School
  • EAST at North Little Rock Middle School
  • EAST at Pulaski Heights Middle School
  • EAST at Roberts Elementary School
  • EAST at Westside High School
  • Emily Huckabey, Cossatot River High School
  • Exell Breedlove, Volunteer AR / Arkansas Department of Human Services
  • Farrah McEntire, Star City Middle School
  • Hassan Karaouni, Facebook Techstart
  • Heather Ratchford, Woodland Junior High School
  • Jackie Basinger, Mountain Home High School
  • James Hughes, ATG USA
  • Jeanne Roepcke, Batesville High School
  • Jennie Coy, Joe T. Robinson Middle School
  • Jerry Harvey, Wynne High School
  • Jill Sanders, Buffalo Island Central High School
  • John Stokes, Hot Springs High School
  • Josh Worthy, Sonora Elementary School
  • Julie Reardon, Southside Junior High School - Batesville
  • Karla Allen, Ozark Water Projects
  • Katie Taylor, Greenbrier Junior High School
  • Kay Carpenter, Searcy High School
  • Kelly Falkner, Kiamichi Technology Centers - Poteau
  • Kelly Martin, Ahlf Junior High School
  • Kerry Eliason, Nettleton Junior High School
  • Lauren Morris, University of Arkansas, Cooperative Extension Service
  • Malcolm Williamson, CAST
  • Mark Diggs, Veterans Villages of America
  • Mary Beth Hatch, Harrison Middle School
  • Patrick Lanford, Gentry High School
  • Robbie Cox, Batesville Junior High School
  • Robyn Lane, CAST
  • Sara Walker, Russellville School District / Edu Digital Innovations
  • Sarah Thomas, LEGO Education
  • Shelia Mitchell, Ozark Water Projects
  • Shelly Jones, North Little Rock Middle School
  • Steven Hallman, ATG USA
  • Tracie Ashley, Prairie Grove Middle School
  • Tommy Welch, Marshall High School
  • Walter Burgess, Power Technology
  • Warna Gibson, Kiamichi Technology Centers - McAlester

Prize and Swag Bag Donors

Thanks to generous donations from the companies listed below, EAST was able to give away more than $7,000 worth of gifts and merchandise including gift baskets, gift cards, hotel stays and getaways and so much more. EAST would like to offer a special thanks to all these folks for their kind donations.

  • Applebees
  • Arkansas Athletics
  • Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum
  • Best Western Inn of the Ozarks
  • Branch Out Paint Bar & Boutique
  • CDW-G
  • Chipotle
  • Comfort Inn & Suites
  • CyberPatriot
  • Diane Haynes
  • DonorsChoose
  • EAST Initiative
  • Embassy Suites by Hilton Little Rock
  • Embassy Suites Hot Springs Hotel & Spa
  • Four Points by Sheraton Little Rock
  • Hampton Inn and Suites
  • Hiltons of Branson
  • Holiday Inn Conference Center
  • Holiday Inn - Springdale
  • Hot Springs Comfort Suites
  • Hotel Hot Springs
  • Izzys
  • I-40 Liquor
  • Little Rock Marathon
  • Little Rock Zoo
  • Magic Springs Theme and Water Park
  • Malco Theatres
  • Matt Dozier
  • Memphis Zoo
  • Museum of Discovery
  • Northwest Arkansas Naturals
  • Painting with a Twist (LR)
  • Painting with a Twist (NLR)
  • Rock Town Distillery
  • Silver Dollar City
  • Soul Fish Cafe
  • Stone’s Throw Brewing
  • Tami Baker, Thirty-One Gifts Consultant
  • Tazikis
  • Thousand Hills Golf Resort
  • University of Central Arkansas Bookstore
  • Visit Hot Springs
  • Walmart (Bowman)
  • Walmart (Cantrell)
  • Winthrop Rockefeller Institute
  • Wyndham Riverfront Little Rock
  • Yellow Rocket Concepts
  • Yoakum, Lovell & Company, PLC.
  • 4imprint

Summer Seminar Photos