Resources for Senior Student Affairs Officers
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Senior Student Affairs Officers


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Senior Student Affairs Officers Conference

In 2017, ACCU launched a conference specially designed for senior officers in student affairs. Bringing together expert speakers and representatives from Catholic colleges and universities across the country and beyond, this annual session equips senior leaders in student affairs with new skills and new ideas for working through the evolving challenges of their profession. 


Registration now open! 2023 Senior Student Affairs Officers Conference

ACCU SSAO Conference AttendeesStill We Rise

Saturday, February 4, 2023

8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. (EST)
The Capital Hilton Hotel | Washington, DC  (immediately before the 2023 Annual Meeting)

As Catholic higher education senior student affairs officers, our lived mission is to seek and provide opportunities to inform and equip students to advance their personal, intellectual, and spiritual growth within a framework of Catholic values. We rise to answer the call to bridge disparities and nurture the student experience. We rise despite challenges and obstacles, both personal and professional, that have impacted and modified our “new world”. And STILL WE RISE to meet the need and support the advancement of our profession, our students’ holistic well-being, and innovatively reconfiguring the student experience for today’s student in today’s world. 

Convene in Washington, DC with your colleagues at this year’s ACCU SSAO pre-conference as we share and receive practical advice on leading student life in light of today’s headwinds of higher education: workforce, mental health, diversity, mission identity on our campuses.


Register Today! 


Schedule At-A-Glance

Friday, February 3, 2023

Senior Student Affairs Officers Reception
7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
The Capital Hilton Hotel, Washington, DC


Saturday, February 4, 2023
8:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m. Breakfast
9:00 a.m. - 9:15 a.m. Welcome, Prayer, and Conference Overview
9:15 a.m. - 10:15 a.m. Session 1
10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Break
10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Session 2
12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. Lunch & Fellowship
1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Session 3
2:30 p.m. - 2:45 p.m. Break
2:45 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Session 4
4:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. Closing Remarks & Prayer


Many thanks to our 2023 SSAO Conference Planning Committee for their assistance in planning this year's conference!

Tim Bessler, Vice President for Student Development and Dean of Students, St. Mary's University, TX
Xavier Cole, Vice President for Student Affairs, Marquette University, and Planning Committee Chair
Mary Geller, Associate Provost for Student Success, College of Saint Benedict + Saint John's University
Ronald Gray, Vice President for Student Life, Manhattan College
Charlotte Johnson, Vice President for Student Life, University of San Diego

Additional gratitude to ASACCU for their support in planning the conference!


Check out last year's conference highlights!

2022 Conference Details & Resources


Questions? Please contact ACCU.

Available ACCU Resources

Student affairs professionals provide opportunities for personal growth and help students make healthy decisions within a framework of Catholic values. Given their pivotal role on a Catholic campus, ACCU offers these resources to assist them professionally and personally:

  Student Life in Catholic Higher Education: Advancing Good Practice   Principles of Good Practice for Student Affairs at Catholic Colleges and Universities   Strengthening Catholic Identity: Student Affairs
Student Life in Catholic Higher Education: Advancing Good Practice

Containing the collected wisdom of both current and former student affairs leaders, this book offers a blend of practical advice and personal reflection on leading student life at a Catholic institution.

Principles of Good Practice for Student Affairs in Catholic Higher Education

Reprinted in 2022, this document has long been the standard for understanding and assessing a vision of student affairs at Catholic colleges and universities.

Strengthening Catholic Identity: Student Affairs 

This installment of a 12-part brochure series provides an overview of how student affairs seeks to develop students spiritually, emotionally, intellectually, and physically in the context of Catholic values and Christian community.

Additional Leadership Development Opportunities

In addition to the Senior Student Affairs Officers Pre-conference that occurs immediately before the ACCU Annual Meeting, ACCU is proud to offer additional leadership development opportunities:

Principles 101 Webinars Fall 2022


Principles 101 Webinars

ACCU will be offering two FREE Principles 101 webinars in October 2022 which will provide attendees with a 60-minute overview of the 3rd edition of the Principles

  • Wednesday, October 12, 2022 at 2:00 p.m. (EST)
  • Tuesday, October 18, 2022 at 2:00 p.m. (EST)
Principles 101 Webinar Registration




Regional Launch Workshops

ACCU will be taking the Principles on the road for regional in-person workshops across the United States. 

During these half-day workshops, attendees will take a deeper dive into the newest edition and develop an action plan for implementing on their campuses within their respective work. Many thanks to our ACCU member institutions for hosting these regional meetings!

Date Location ACCU Member Institution Time
Monday, November 7 Philadelphia, PA

Villanova University-
The Inn at Villanova Hotel & Conference Center

Noon to 4:30 p.m. (ET)
Friday, November 18 Indianapolis, IN Marian University 1:00 to 4:30 p.m. (ET)
Monday, November 28 Austin, TX St. Edward's University 1:00 to 4:30 p.m. (CST)
Tuesday, November 29 Los Angeles, CA Mount Saint Mary's University, Los Angeles 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (PST)
Registration is now open!

Registration is only $65 per person and includes a complimentary copy of the new Principles publications and additional resources.

Register Today! 


Questions? Please contact ACCU

Banner photo courtesy of Ave Maria University

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