Welcome to the 2020 Wisconsin State Virtual Music Conference
by Paul Budde, WMEA President
The 2020 Wisconsin State Virtual Music Conference will be distinct from previous years, as the event will be held online, rather than in person. As you can imagine, moving to a virtual conference will result in many changes. Yet, the big-picture goals of the conference will remain intact, as we seek to provide outstanding professional development through diverse, high-quality conference sessions; opportunities to network and socialize with colleagues from across the state; options to connect with exhibitors; and more.
The 2020 conference will be spread across the week of October 25-30, 2020, with events taking place in the late afternoons and evenings in order to minimize conflicts with employment obligations during the day. In addition, sessions will be shorter than usual (approximately 40 minutes) to maximize the impact of online experiences for attendees. The Opening Ceremony will take place on Sunday, October 25 (7 p.m.) and will include the President’s Welcome, an overview of the virtual conference experience, and a featured keynote address by Kai Kight. The Closing Ceremony will take place on Friday, October 30 (5 p.m.) and will include the President’s Closing Remarks, an Awards Ceremony for the 2020 WMEA Award winners, a random drawing for a free 2021 conference registration, and a featured keynote address by NAfME President Mackie Spradley.
The theme for the 2020 Wisconsin State Virtual Music Conference is “Vision 2020: The Future is Now,” connecting the conference to Vision 2020: The Housewright Symposium on the Future of Music Education (1999). As such, conference sessions will highlight ideas that challenge music educators to broaden the scope of music education in meaningful and holistic ways, including themes related to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI); social-emotional learning; online teaching and learning; and topics connected to WMEA large-group committees (Advocacy, CMP, iListenWI, and Standards). This year, we are excited to welcome NAfME President Mackie Spradley as our special guest. In addition to presenting the Closing Ceremony keynote address, Spradley will present a session during the week. Finally, we look forward to state honors events, including the WSMA State Honors Project Virtual Concert on October 29.
Welcome to the 2020 Wisconsin State Virtual Music Conference! I am excited to share an incredible week of learning and connecting with you. Enjoy!