Region IV

Region IV Conference

Region IV ConferenceThe 2018 NAFSA Region IV Conference: Building Bridges will be held October 15-18 in Duluth, Minnesota at the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center (DECC). We look forward to connecting with you!


Join us for the best event of the year as we present the annual Region IV’s conference in Duluth, MN, October 15-18, 2018. With three amazing hotels and a conference center on the shores of Lake Superior, this will be an event to remember! We will have informative workshops, enlightening sessions and spectacular special events in a beautiful setting. We look forward to seeing you on the beautiful shores of Lake Superior this fall.

  • We start our pre-conference workshops October 15-16 and conference sessions October 16-18.
  • Enjoy a fabulous opening reception at the historic Glensheen Mansion and amazing optional events including a Vista Fleet boat cruise and craft brewery tour.
  • Connect with other conference attendees through networking events or by signing up as a conference volunteer.
  • Attend the Newcomer Session as a conference first-timer or an experienced NAFSAn/mentor.
  • Recognition of regional NAFSA Awards during the Awards Luncheon (nominations due October 1)

Conference Schedule


  Early Bird Registration (until Sept. 7) Regular Registration (Sept. 8-Oct. 14) Late Registration
(Oct. 15 – on site)
NAFSA Member $225 $275 $325
Non-Member $300 $350 $400
Student/Retiree/Community Volunteer* $95 $125 $125
NAFSA Academy Participant or Lifetime Member $0 $0 $0
One Day Member* $150 $150 $150
One Day Non-Member $150 $150 $150

*Details can be found on the registration form.


The following pre-conference workshops will be offered October 15-16. See the CEP workshop descriptions.

  • Curriculum Integration of Learning Abroad: The University of Minnesota Model
  • Education Abroad: Critical Skills for the Adviser
  • F-1 Advising: Intermediate
  • Intercultural Communication in Practice
  • J-1 Advising for Beginners
  • Strategies: International Student Advising

Awards and Recognition

NAFSA Region IV wishes to recognize the outstanding work made in the field of international education. Nominate your colleague for a NAFSA Region IV award in one of the following categories:

Distinguished Service Award
Recognizes Region IV NAFSAns currently involved in the association who have donated at least 10 years of service to NAFSA and who have acted as mentors to colleagues in all aspects of the field. In addition, this award may recognize: professional and personal contributions to the field of international education that are beyond the normal expectations of the job; contributions of time to program for international or study abroad students or campus internationalization efforts; significant leadership at the regional or national levels; reflects the ideals and goals of NAFSA through her/his professional commitment and dedication to the field; retiring international educators who have made significant contributions in the field of international education.

Friend of the Region Award
Recognizes individuals who have given exceptional service to Region IV. This may be someone who has: sacrificed a great deal of their own personal time and resources to train individuals within the region; assisted or aided in a variety of efforts promoting Region IV membership; furthered the interests of international educational exchange; remained active in regional activities, projects, or programs; demonstrated a commitment to promoting global understanding and providing international educational exchange in their local community; contributed to the spirit of volunteerism and demonstrated a long-term commitment to international education and exchange; may be engaged leadership for recruiting, training, and recognizing community volunteers; may actively participate in programming for internationals in the local community.

Internationalization Achievement Award
Recognizes an institution, organization, or group that is making strides, being innovative, and is committed to comprehensive internationalization of the campus.

Most Innovative International Initiative Award
Recognizes someone who has done something outstanding, innovative, or creative; someone who has given hours to a special project; someone who has an idea that could be adapted elsewhere and has potential to impact students or international education profoundly in a very positive manner.

Outstanding New Professional Award
Recognizes an individual who has been in the field for 1 - 5 years; a new professional who is contributing significantly and making a difference in the lives of students and co-workers; someone who is dynamic, enthusiastic, passionate, and who plans to stay involved in the field.

Outstanding Student Award
Recognizes a student who chose to present and participate in our regional conference. Ideally this individual will continue to be involved in the field, ultimately becoming a NAFSA member and serving in leadership roles for NAFSA or similar associations. The award is offered in the hope that the recipient may inspire more students to become involved in NAFSA and help get their foot in the door in the field.

Submit a nomination!

The deadline to submit a nomination is October 1, 2018.


The conference will be held at the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center, a short distance from many local hotels. NAFSA has negotiated with three specific hotels for special conference pricing. Please call the hotel directly to make your reservations and mention the “NAFSA” room block.

Getting to Duluth is easy and there are several options to make your travel easier.

The Duluth International Airport serves two domestic airlines: Delta and United. Easy connections through Minneapolis and Chicago are offered regularly throughout the day. Taxis, shuttles and Lyft/Uber are available to the hotels (please note only some hotels in Canal Park offer shuttles and Uber and Lyft are still relatively new to Duluth and may have a longer waiting time if not booked in advance).

The Skyline Shuttle provides daily shuttle service between Duluth, MN and the Minneapolis Airport for approximately $44 per way.

Greyhound and Jefferson Lines bus is available from Minneapolis to Duluth for approximately $30 one way.

Duluth is accessible by major highways and directions can be found online.


NAFSA Region IV Conference Grants are financial support for Region IV international educators with demonstrated need. The general Conference Grants cover the cost of full conference registration and we also offer grants modeled after NAFSA's Diversity Impact Program for Tribal Colleges, Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs), Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs), and Community Colleges within the Region IV area (Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, North Dakota, and South Dakota). Diversity Impact Grants cover the full conference registration plus a $500 travel grant. Conference Grants cannot be combined with the Very Motivated Presenter (VMP) discount.

Grants are available for individuals in the following categories:

  • Student (seeking entry level ideas to enter international education field)
  • Newcomer (employed in international education but new to the field and/or NAFSA)
  • Seasoned professional (more than 5 years of international education and/or NAFSA experience)
  • Professional from Tribal College, HBCU, HSI, and/or Community College (preference will be given to institutions that have not attended a Region IV conference previously)

The application for conference grants is now closed. The deadline to apply was August 13, 2018.  

Sponsorship Opportunities

Region IV is excited to have many sponsorship opportunities available to exhibitors and other sponsors. Please see the various opportunities below.

  • Expo Booth: $485
  • Banners in conference center atrium (up to 6 feet of space): $150
  • Special Events: Opening Reception, 5k Run, Boat Cruise, Brewery Tour, Polar Plunge: $250
  • Coffee Breaks: $500
  • Digital Ad Splash Page: $500

Sign up to be an exhibitor or an event partner. Questions? Contact Libby Claerbout, Region IV Exhibits Manager at

#NAFSA4BridgingCultures Photo Contest


All submitted photos will be evaluated on creativity and photo quality. Winner of the #NAFSA4BridgingCultures photo contest will win a free trip on the Region IV Conference dinner cruise (a $50 value!).

Entry Info

To be eligible for the #NAFSA4BridgingCultures photo contest, post a photo on social media sites (Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter) with the hashtag #NAFSA4BridgingCultures. The photo must fit the Region IV conference theme “bridging cultures.” To be eligible for the photo contest, be sure to include the following:

  • Post with hashtag: #NAFSA4BridgingCultures
  • When the photograph was taken (month, if known, and year)
  • Tag where the photograph was taken
  • The complete name and city/state/institution of the photographer


Photos must be submitted by October 5, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. CST.

Rules and Fine Print

Copyright Policy
Rights are retained by the artist. By submitting the work, however, the artist grants NAFSA Region IV royalty-free use, including use of their photograph(s) in displays and in print and electronic publications. The artist will be credited in displays and publications when appropriate.

Model Release Policy
Photographers must be sensitive to the privacy of human subjects. Winning photographs which include people will require signed "Media Release Forms" in cases where the privacy of the individuals pictured may appear to have been infringed upon.

Judging Criteria
Entries will be judged on artistic expressiveness, creativity and on the quality of the image. Judges also reserve the right to consider geographic and thematic variety, as well as relevance to the NAFSA Region IV Conference Theme “Bridging Cultures,” in selecting the winners. All decisions of the judges are final. The competition organizers reserve the right to disqualify entries which do not conform to the stated contest rules and criteria.

Future Conferences

Save the dates of our future conferences!

  • 2019 - October 20-24, Fargo, North Dakota

Special Membership Offer

Find out how to save 50% on NAFSA membership. Icon PDF 16

*Only available to registered non-member NAFSA regional conference attendees who have never been members of NAFSA or whose previous membership expired on or before July 1, 2017.