Survival Kit

Dates & Location

February 19th – 21st, 2008

Hot Springs Convention Center
134 Convention Boulevard
Hot Springs, AR 71901

Emergency Phone Numbers for use during the Conference.

  • Emergency Phone Number – 501.620.5041
  • EAST Main Line – 501.371.5016 (will be transferred to the convention center)


Please find a detailed agenda of the Conference here.


All participating hotels will enforce a curfew of 11 pm for EAST participants.  Facilitators have capability of requiring an earlier curfew of their attendees if desired. 


The deadline for your students to register has passed. If you need to make adjustments to your roster, please contact Jennifer Burroughs as soon as possible.

Break-Out Sessions

Hands-on and presentation style training is offered in numerous categories for both students and facilitators at the Conference.  Make sure you and your students register for these sessions before the deadline of February 13th. To view the guidelines and find out how to register, click here.  

  • Make sure the students who are presenting to the Program Impact Assessment Judges do not register for a session that is conflicting with their presentation time.

Dress Guidelines

The Partnership Conference is a professional event and we ask that all participants maintain professional dress. Tank tops, exposed midriffs, flip flops or the display of undergarments are not acceptable at any time.

If you have specialty EAST shirts designed for your school program, you may wear those February 19 or 21 as long as they do not fit the criteria mentioned above and are worn in a presentable, professional manner. Print out a copy of these guidelines for all participants from your school.  

  • Please make sure students who are speaking or possibly accepting awards during the Opening Plenary are dressed in business casual attire even though the dress guideline for that day is more casual.

For day to day dress guidelines click here.

Arrival Procedures & On-Site Registration

Each school is scheduled to arrive during one of the three arrival groups. Group 1: 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., Group 2: 10:00 a.m.-12:00 noon and Group 3: 11:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. to begin setting up their booth. Please find your Arrival Group by clicking the following link, then, click on the Arrival Group links and locate your school's name on a list.  While your students are unloading your bus, a facilitator (not a student) must go the Registration Booth to register your school and receive your registration bag.

Note: If you are not within driving distance your school will not appear on one of the lists.  You need to notify Melanie Ridlon if you will arrive with group 1 or 3. 

Things to Bring to Registration: 

  •  Name tags for all participants from your school. Lanyards and badge holders will be provided for your registered attendees. Don’t forget to create name tags for any special guests coming from your school.
  • Your PIA presentation on CD if you have not submitted it online.
  • Updated Release Forms

Arrival procedure details can be found here;

Airport Shuttles

Shuttle schedules have been sent to the participants who have requested this service.  Let us know if you have not received this information.

Name Tags

Each school will be responsible for making their own Name Tags for the Conference. Please click on the following link to locate the criteria for the school-designed name tag and a general template that is optional for your use. You will be provided with a lanyard badge holder for all registered participants.

Tip: Print everyone's cell phone number on a card and place it in each badge for easy communication between students and facilitators.  Also, make the name tags two sided so if the tag turns around participants can still view the information.

Conference Team Schedule / Tips & Tricks

Create a schedule for your conference team. Make sure to include two students in your booth at all times, your participant's breakout session schedule, lunch rotation, and time for your students to visit other EAST Program and Exhibitor booths.

Click on the link below for other tips and tricks on preparing you for the East Conference.

Tips & Tricks


Each school will be provided with a 10 x 10 booth during the Conference. Your school's booth should be designed as a representation of your entire EAST program, not focusing on one specific project. When it is ready, your booth number will be announced.  As a reminder, booth break down is 1:15 p.m. on Thursday, February 21st and not before that time.

Remember to bring a back up computer, cables, batteries (charged), etc.   

Tip: Our booth vendor will provide hooks free for your use in your booth design. Fishing wire is very useful in hanging posters on these hooks.  Don’t forget to label everything from your school.

For more information about booth guidelines, a judging rubric and examples of booths at past Conference's click here.

Program Impact Assessment

Each school will be evaluated on February 21st and provided with a good, excellent or superior rating. The Program Impact Assessment Rubric defines specifically how you will be evaluated. Make sure to download the rubric from the website, print it, and provide copies to your students. There are four categories to the rubric which include:

  1. Pre conference activities - 10% of your overall score.
  2. Booth Design- 5% of your score
  3. Presentation - Your presentation team will have 10 minutes with the judges. The presentation will be 25% of your score. Time your students when they practice. Have them present to others daily so they feel comfortable when they present to the judges. A digital copy of this presentation will be turned in when you register at the Conference.
  4. Your EAST program - 60% of your overall score.

Presentation Information - The 10 minutes are flexible. Your students should present a formal presentation and allow time for questions and answers. If your students finish their presentation and Q&A before their 10 minutes are up, the judges will ask "Is there anything else we need to know?", and if the answer is no they will move on. If your students are still presenting at 10 minutes, the judges will politely say the time is up and thank them for their presentation.

We encourage you to use the rating you receive and your rubric scores to help you focus on areas of growth for the future of your EAST program. You can receive specific information regarding the categories, your judging time and a copy of the rubric here.

Program Impact Assessment Online Submission

The Program Impact Assessment Online Submission has reopened for the schools who didn’t complete it by the first deadline.  We will provide any added submissions to the judges at the Conference.   For details on the contents that will be needed and where to submit click here.

Opening Plenary

During this event we will recognize the leadership teams, announce project competition winners and other individual awards. Please make sure students who are speaking or possibly accepting awards during the opening plenary are dressed in business casual attire.

Banquet (Important)

The EAST Banquet is the largest celebration of EAST schools that we have all year. In many ways it is our “Grand Public Showing”; the George Lucas Foundation termed it a “rock concert atmosphere”. As you prepare for this activity please keep the following things in mind: 

  • This is a formal banquet activity. It consists of a nice “sit down” meal and high energy program. There will be student presentations from the stage and numerous guest speakers. In addition to EAST schools and community supporters there will be numerous “VIPS” on hand from across the nation. This year our featured speaker will be the Governor of Arkansas, Mike Beebe.
  • This event will happen in Halls A, B, and C of the Hot Springs Convention Center. There will be approximately 1800-1900 people at this single event.
  • The dress for this event will be business and professional dress. This is a formal occasion and we ask that everyone dress appropriately for a “fancy occasion”.
  • We strongly recommend that you arrive at the banquet hall ahead of your designated time. To cut down on confusion and to minimize the chance of an unfortunate incident, we have instituted staggered seating and assigned the schools to color-coded sections. These sections correspond to the color coding of the tickets. You must sit in your assigned section or you will be asked to move, but you will be able to choose from among the open tables in your section.
  • Please do not send one or two participants ahead of your group to save a table. If you come together, then you can sit together and avoid having a) to find your group and b) the chance of an awkward confrontation with other schools over empty seats.
  • Not all of our groups have exactly 10 members and as such there will be “holes” at some tables. As you assemble, please group your seats in such a way that the holes are together at the table.
  • Be friendly and accommodating to other schools as they try to fill these holes. One of our goals is to allow students, facilitators, and supporters the opportunity to get to know each other and to learn how others experience the EAST model.
  • Though we have prepared and planned for all of our groups to sit together, this does not mean that each group will have their own table (especially those that arrive at the line or the banquet hall later). If you do need to split up, there will be staff and volunteers on hand to help direct you to open seats.
  • With such a large crowd it is important to be friendly and accommodating to those around you. Please keep conversation down during the program in respect of those around you. We further ask that you understand that conversation and noise in the restrooms and hallways carries into the banquet hall.
  • This is a celebration of the great things that EAST and EAST students are doing. Please have a good time. Applaud when things happen that you feel are worthy and enjoy the show.

Student Competitions

One of our goals for the Conference each year is to allow as much participation from students as possible. To encourage this participation, we host a number of student-centered competitions before and during the Conference. To view the competitions and teams for this year's Conference click here.

Shipping & Accessory Order Forms

Some of you may need to ship items to the Convention Center. If so, Eclipse Displays, Inc. offers a shipping service. Click here to access the forms you need.

Tuesday Night Activities (New for 2008)

We want you to take time on Tuesday night to relax and have a little fun before the next morning when anxieties are high and all of our feet begin to hurt.  Tuesday, after the Opening Plenary, begins an evening out with your school.  We are pleased to announce that two locations in Hot Springs are offering special activities for EAST Conference participants at discounted rates.

Mid-America Museum - $5 per person (A shuttle will be provided but RSVPs are required) – Tickets are still available for purchase from 1:00-3:00 PM after registration on February 19th.  You may also purchase these tickets that night at the museum.

Maxwell Blade Magician Show - $10 per person (Sold Out)

Click here for more details.

Professional Photography Services

Gallegos Photography will be on-site February 20th & 21st.  Click here for more details.

Release Forms

The EAST Conference is a great opportunity for the EAST Initiative to document the experience of students and other EAST participants. With that being said, we would like to make sure that all participants are protected and aware of the possible use of their images. We are requesting that all conference participants complete a Name, Appearance & Image Authorization & Release Form.  These forms need to be submitted to Jennifer Burroughs by February 8th. 

For a copy of this form or for other details visit this link.


Throughout the Conference, security will be onsite to help monitor the exhibit hall floor during transitional times. However, please do not leave portable items unattended in public areas.

 It is extremely important that you label everything your program brings to the conference. This way we can return any lost items to the appropriate person.  Also, please take all valuable and portable items to your hotel room each evening. This will aid in their protection. Note: EAST Initiative is not responsible for loss of or damage to any valuables or other items of any participant in the Conference. 

Luggage Storage 

On Thursday, February 21, luggage storage will be available in Hall D of the exhibit hall floor (back behind row 900).  Luggage will be tagged and a bellman will be available to assist with this process.  This is a complementary service provided to you if desired. 


Closing Session (New for 2008 - Important)

The Ambassador Team will lead us in this session which will mark the close of the 2008 EAST Partnership Conference.  At 12:30 PM on Thursday, February 21, all participants will be asked to begin moving to the upper bleachers within the exhibit hall/arena.  This session is expected to begin at 12:45 PM.  Booth breakdown will begin directly after the closing session is complete.

Parking Lots and Unattended Vehicles

Convention center and EAST staff will monitor the loading dock and back parking lot before and during booth breakdown/move out. 

Note:  Do not leave vehicles unattended.  Unattended vehicles and vehicles that are blocking the loading dock or entrances and exits of parking lots are subject to being towed at the owner’s expense.

This page was last updated on Mon, Feb 11, 2008 at 8:37 AM | View all updates | Site Map