What’s New at the NTC This Year?

The 2014 is going to be here in just a matter of weeks – are you registered? This year’s conference will have over 100 educational programs, many opportunities to find and network with your peers and new colleagues, and, of course, events that you’ve come to expect from the NTC like coffee, great conversations, and plenty of tweets. We are confident that the 2014 NTC is going to be the best one yet, and to prove it check out some of the highlights we have planned for you in DC: 

3 Plenaries

That’s right, two just wasn’t enough! Not for the kind of quality conversations we know you all want to see at the NTC. Our goal with the morning plenaries are to showcase different topics and perspectives, and bring more voices to the stage. To that end, we are excited to have three full days of educational programs, launched each morning with a main stage presentation to get you thinking. Day 1 will feature 7 different speakers, all presenting in the Ignite format. Day 2 features a point-counter-point conversation exploring the question of where technology sits inside an organization. Finally, Day 3 launches us all into our last day of sessions with an exploration of the future of nonprofit technology. 

Expanded Science Fair

We heard the feedback and took action: one day wasn’t enough to really meet with all of the exhibitors and learn about the wide array of products and services available. This year, the Science Fair spans the first two days of the conference, March 13th and 14th. This means you have the opportunity to attend sessions, visit the Science Fair, and then keep talking with and learning from exhibitors and speakers to make the best decisions for your organization. (Don’t worry, there will still be lots of giveaways, too!)

Demo Stage

We’ve tried mixing educational sessions with product spotlights in the past, but have heard mixed reviews. Sometimes it is difficult for attendees to really know where they are going to go and it’s challenging for presenters to make the best connections. This year we are trying something new (and will be listening to your feedback!): we’ve built a stage inside the Science Fair, and will have 30 minute sessions scheduled during the dedicated Science Fair hours. On this stage, you’ll hear interviews, Q&As, case studies, and even full product demos. This is your chance to hear from exhibitors and still have time to keep the conversation going with them at their booth. The finalized schedule for the demo stage will be added to myNTC, as well as the printed program guide.

Big Idea Sessions

With the hope of providing an opportunity to discuss large topics, explore research, and otherwise step back for big conversations within the agenda, we’ve added Big Idea Sessions this year. These are sessions where you may find competing views, brand new reports, or important discussions about our work and our sector. All of the NTC educational sessions are from the community, but these Big Idea Sessions are meant to help indicate sessions that may not be as concrete or tangible as many sessions at the NTC. 

Full Pre-Conference Offerings

“There’s just too much to do!” We hear that often in NTC evaluations, but we feel that having too many great choices is a better problem to have than too few. To help support attendees in maximizing their opportunities to learn and connect, we’ve expanded the program to provide for the optional pre-conference events. As I mentioned above, we have two days of the Science Fair and three full days of plenaries and sessions, so where are all those others events to go? The 14NTC has a full pre-conference day of programs, including: Day of Service, Drupal Day, and a number of workshops. We’ll share more about all of these events soon and you can learn more on the Agenda At-A-Glance.

And those are just the five big things to share today! The most important piece of making the 14NTC the best one yet is you. Register today and join us in DC on March 13-15!