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A place to get ABE news from across Minnesota.

Top Reasons to Attend the ABE Volunteer Management Conference - By Ellie Purdy, Volunteer Outreach Manager

The ABE Volunteer Management Conference (VMC) is designed for all Minnesota ABE staff who work with volunteers: coordinators, teachers, and managers alike. In 12 concurrent sessions throughout the day, participants get practical resources they can use right away, learn new strategies, share their professional wisdom with colleagues and earn six CEUs.

This year’s session highlights include:

  • The New MABE and Volunteer Data with Jenny Schlukebier
  • Observing Volunteers & Providing Constructive Feedback with Suzanne McCurdy
  • Unpacking Racial Equity in ABE with Jodi Versaw
  • New Resources to Support Volunteers in the Classroom with Andrea Echelberger
  • And more: read on for the full lineup of sessions!

The Award for Excellence in Volunteer Engagement is an additional conference highlight. This award honors an ABE professional who demonstrates vision, diligence, and commitment to integrating volunteers into their ABE program.

  • Do you have a colleague who has made unique contributions to your volunteer program? The 2016 call for nominations is now open! Nominations are due by November 4.

  • Read more about what makes a strong candidate, or meet the 2015 and 2014 award winners. Please contact Ellie Purdy with questions: email Ellie or call 651-251-9061.

Conference Details and Registration Info

Date: Friday, December 2, 2016
Times: 8:15 – 3:00 (sessions begin at 8:45)
Location: Minnesota Department of Education, Conference Center B
1500 Commerce St., Roseville, MN 55113


The fee is $35 and includes breakfast and lunch. We’ll pay for your hotel on Thursday, December 1 if you’re traveling more than 50 miles to attend the conference. You can request it when you register. 

For more conference details and to register, visit


Concurrent Sessions

Here’s the full list of concurrent sessions. For all session descriptions, visit

The New MABE and Volunteer Data
Jenny Schlukebier, Urban Planet & Ellie Purdy, Minnesota Literacy Council

Unpacking Racial Equity in ABE
Jodi Versaw, Minnesota Department of Education & Kristin Klas, HAP

Give It to Me Straight: Observing Volunteers & Providing Constructive Feedback

Suzanne McCurdy, SPCLC

New Resources to Support Volunteers in the Classroom

Andrea Echelberger, Minnesota Literacy Council

Navigating Difficult Conversations with Volunteers
Allie Bezat Riley, HAP

Volunteer Management 101
Cathy Grady, Minnesota Literacy Council

Creating Teaching Internships
Erin Cary, Lyndale Neighborhood Association

Personalities, Volunteers and You
Debbie Cushman, Minnesota Literacy Council

Volunteers to Advocates: Lifting Your Students' Voices

Kathleen Roche, English Learning Center

It Doesn’t Have to Be a Gift Card: Free and Low-Cost Ways to Say Thanks to Volunteers
Rob Podlasek, Minnesota Literacy Council

Web Tools for the Busy ABE Professional

Susan Wetenkamp-Brandt, Minnesota Literacy Council

Communicating With Volunteers to Build Community
A panel facilitated by the LAN Volunteer Engagement Committee