NAFSA 2020 Annual Conference & Expo

With concern for the health and safety of our attendees, the NAFSA board of directors decided to cancel the 2020 NAFSA Annual Conference & Expo scheduled to take place on May 24-29 in St. Louis, Missouri.


The NAFSA Annual Conference & Expo is your opportunity to establish new contacts and deepen professional relationships within communities that share your professional interests. Community-focused events and gatherings at NAFSA 2020 connect you with peers and senior leaders from across the international education field.

KCs, Regions, and MIGs: Definitions

Are you new to NAFSA, confused by these acronyms, or unsure how these types of communities are different from each other? Here’s an explanation to help you find the communities that fit your type of institution and your professional development needs.

What is a Knowledge Community (KC)?

A Knowledge Community (KC) is a professional network within the field of international education. NAFSA has five KCs, each with teams of member-leaders who are charged with creating resources for the field and fostering engagement.

What are the NAFSA regions?

NAFSA's membership in the United States is organized into 11 geographic regions that provide the important grassroots strength of the association. Each of the five KCs has a regional presence. Non-U.S. based attendees are welcome to attend events for any of the regions.

What is a Member Interest Group (MIG)?

Diversity and inclusion are celebrated with our 35+ Member Interest Groups (MIGs), founded by members wishing to explore some facet of their world with others. For years, NAFSA members have connected on topics of importance —whether based on the dimensions of their careers, affinity for a region or country, and core aspects of their identities.  The MIG open meetings welcome all conference attendees, not just NAFSA members, who are interested in connecting and networking with colleagues who have similar interests.

Knowledge Community Events

Preconference Workshops

Day/Time: Sunday, May 24 – Tuesday, May 26 | Various times

Choose from 30 highly interactive, participatory learning opportunities designed for wherever you are in your career. To find a schedule of workshops organized by Knowledge Community, please see your registration brochure or the online planner.

Knowledge Community Updates and Networking Receptions

Monday, May 25
4:30 p.m.-5:15 p.m. KC Updates Meetings
5:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. KC Networking Receptions

Learn about the latest developments in your professional specialty and meet other members of your KC. Each of the five KCs will host meetings and receptions at these times.

NAFSA thanks our sponsors for supporting the KC networking receptions:

  • Education Abroad (EA)
  • International Education Leadership (IEL)
    Sponsored by Northeastern University
  • International Enrollment Management (IEM)
    Sponsored by Duolingo English Test
  • International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS)
    Sponsored by Sunapsis
  • Teaching, Learning, and Scholarship (TLS)

All conference registrants are welcome at each reception; preregistration is required. Guest tickets are not available. Food stations and cash bars are available.

Knowledge Community Newcomers Orientations

Tuesday, May 26
10:15 a.m. - 11:15 a.m. Education Abroad (EA) Newcomers Orientation
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. International Education Management (IEM) Newcomers Orientation
11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. International Student Services (ISSS) Newcomers Orientation

Designed for annual conference first-timers and professionals who have recently started working in a new international education specialty, these orientations will help you find the conference resources that best fit your professional needs.

Knowledge Community Networking Centers

Monday, May 25 - Thursday, May 28 | 7:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.
Friday, May 29 | 7:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

Each knowledge community has a designated networking center to facilitate informal meeting and networking during the conference. The KC networking centers are open to all conference attendees.

Knowledge Community Open Meetings

Day/Time: Tuesday, May 26 - Friday, May 29 | Various times

KC Open Meetings welcome participants to engage in small group conversations focused on professional interests.

Member Interest Group Events

Member Interest Group Open Meetings

Day/Time: Tuesday, May 26 - Friday, May 29 | Various times

MIG Open Meetings welcome participants to engage in small group conversations based on special interests, institution interests, regions, and countries.

Regional Update Meetings

Day/Time: Wednesday, May 27 | 5:45 p.m.-6:45 p.m.

Each of the 11 NAFSA regions will hold individual meetings at this time.