The WCSA23 Symposium and Leadership Retreat is shaping up to be a vibrant and vital event! It will kick off Thursday, June 15th and extend thru Saturday, June 17th in Chicago and on Zoom on parallel tracks. We are glad for co-sponsorship with the University of Illinois, Chicago (UIC) United Faculty Union and History department. Thank you, Dr. Robert Johnston!
Thursday: In Chicago, conference goers will gather at Tufano’s Vernon Park Tap for a meet & greet beginning at 5pm and then at 6pm, sit down for a dinner and opening words to mark the event. A cash-only bar will be available. Our reservation extends til 9pm with an option to move to the patio afterward. The Zoom track will also have a social hour, details forthcoming!
Friday: On Friday, June 16th the Symposium will begin with registration and coffee starting at 8:00am. A morning plenary will include a panel and conversation on Class Cultures with Jack Metzgar, Barbara Jensen, Allison L. Hurst, and Betsey Leondar-Wright. The plenary will be both on-ground and on Zoom.
Synchronous sessions of panels will follow the morning plenary on separate parallel tracks for on-ground and Zoom presenters.
Midday, a panel of UIC United Faculty leads will share their recent strike story through words, visuals, and art. Panelists include Teresa Moreno, Therese Quinn, William Estrada, Leeann Ream. This event will be both on-ground and on Zoom.
In the afternoon, more fantastic sessions will take place as separate parallel tracks for on-ground and Zoom presenters.
In the evening, we’ll eat together and Dorian Warren, a Chicago rooted WCSA founder and president of Community Change, will speak. This event will be both on-ground and on Zoom.
Saturday: On Saturday, June 17th the Leadership Retreat will begin at 8am and close with WCSA’s annual Business Meeting, wrapping up by 6pm. Just one session will be offered at a time to foster communication across corners of WCSA and further community. Saturday will be both on-ground and on Zoom.
The on-ground version of the Conference will happen at the University of Illinois, Chicago (UIC) in the “Student Center East” (SCE) building on the 6th floor. The SCE is located at 750 S. Halsted, west of Chicago’s Loop.
Dorm rooms will be available during our conference at the Academic and Residential Complex (ARC). The ARC is walking distance to the Student Center East where the conference will take place and close to Tufano’s.
Options to rent a single suite or a double suite will be available through our Member Portal for registered conference goers in early April, 2023. Suites have a shared bathroom in the unit and we have requested towels and bedding for all of our small block of rooms. Dorm rooms must be paid through WCSA’s Member Portal by May 10th, 2023, and no cancellations will be possible.
Directions to the ARC dorms are available on the UIC website.
We have a limited number of hotel rooms reserved at the unionized hotel, Crowne Plaza Chicago West Loop located at 25 S. Halsted, about a half-mile north of the conference site.
A URL link to reserve a room at this hotel and receive the conference discount will be posted here in early April.
To get to this hotel, take the CTA Blue Line and get off at the UIC Halsted stop, then proceed east to exit at Halsted. Go north on Halsted.
Getting into Chicago
If you are coming into O’Hare International Airport (ORD), the Chicago Transit Authority’s Blue Line will take you to within a few blocks of the ARC dorm. If you’re coming into Midway Airport, the Orange Line will take you into the Loop, where it is complicated to transfer to the Blue Line, but you could catch a cab to the campus. Chicago Transit, CTA passes cost $5 for one day and $15 for three days. A cab from O’Hare will cost $50 to $60, and from Midway, $35 to $40.
The Blue Line from O’Hare will likely take about an hour, as the train first goes into the Loop and then goes back west. If you are staying at the dorm, you want to get off at the UIC Halsted stop, but once on the platform, go west (the direction of the train) to exit at Peoria rather than Halsted. Walking south from Peoria, there is a walkway that will take you to the eastern-most portion of the ARC dorm. The UIC interactive map is also helpful.
If you are driving, there is a parking lot across the street from the conference site at 750 S. Halsted and within walking distance of the ARC dormitory.
Registration, Membership, & Contact
To register for the conference, reserve dorm rooms, and join WCSA if you are not a member, find information under Join WCSA or go directly to our Member Portal to pay. Once logged in, you will have options to register for the conference and join the association. And soon you’ll also have options to rent dorm rooms if you like!
General questions about WCSA23 can be directed to Jen Vernon, WCSA President-Elect and Chair, Conference Organizing Committee at firstname.lastname@example.org. She is working with a marvelous team and your query may be passed on to experts on the appropriate subcommittee.
*Page updated March 29th, 2023.
Featured image, Chicago, Pedro Lastra, Unsplash.