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NCE at Leadership Connections

Leadership Connections, the national conference of the McCormick Center for Early Childhood Leadership, was held May 9-11 at the Westin Chicago North Shore in Wheeling, IL.  Held annually since 2001, this year's conference brought together over 700 early childhood professionals from 37 states, the District of Columbia, and four countries, including Canada, Israel, the Faroe Islands, and the United States.

Presentations included: 

  • Engaging in School, Family, and Community Partnerships: One Leader's Experience
    Geri Chesner, NCE Associate Professor, Teacher Leader Program
    Lisa Olinger, Illinois Community Unit School District 303

  • Challenging Child Behaviors: A Facilitated Discussion
    Leslie Katch, NCE Assistant Professor, Online Programs

  • Administrative Leadership: A Facilitated Discussion
    Shaunti Knauth, NLU Director of Engaged Research

  • Using Music, Song, and Movement and Why it Matters
    Kristin Lems, NCE Professor and Children's Musician 

In addition, Dr. Jóhannes Miðskarð returned to present Professional Learning Communities and Professional Learning Networks.  An Assistant Professor in Leadership in Schools, Early Childhood Settings and Social Care Settings at the University of the Faroe Islands, Dr. Miðskarð was welcomed by the McCormick Center as a Researcher in Residence during 2017 and shared space with NCE at the Wheeling Campus.

View the Program Book here

Dr. Geri Chesner, right, presenting at 2019 Leadership Connections with recent Teacher Leader endorsement graduate, Lisa Olinger, an early childhood educator and Instructional Coach.


    NLU’s Chicago campus on South Michigan Avenue occupies five floors of the historic Peoples Gas Building. This landmark building, across the street from the Art Institute of Chicago and Grant Park, is easily accessible by train, bus and car and is surrounded by restaurants, parking lots/garages and shops.

    122 S. Michigan Avenue
    Chicago, IL 60603
    (888) 658.8632
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    Conveniently located in a fast-growing business district off I-90 and Route 31, NLU Elgin features 10 classrooms with high-tech media equipment; a computer lab with high-speed Internet access; two conference rooms; and comfortable student lounges. Parking is free at this recently remodeled and upgraded teaching site, which now includes wireless Internet access.

    620 Tollgate Road
    Elgin, IL 60123
    (888) 658.8632
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    Opened in the summer of 2006, NLU North Shore at Skokie is a state-of-the-art modern campus located just off the Edens Expressway near the Old Orchard Shopping Center. The campus includes 44 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a walk-in lab in the library; six conference rooms; a public café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; and multiple, comfortable student lounge areas.

    5202 Old Orchard Road
    Skokie, IL 60077
    (888) 658.8632
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    Located just minutes from the East-West Tollway (I-88), NLU Lisle features 42 wireless classrooms equipped with high-tech media equipment; four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, including a separate walk-in lab in the library; a café for beverages and snacks; a student welcome center; a library for research and study; conference rooms; and six comfortable student lounge areas with wireless access.

    850 Warrenville Road
    Lisle, IL 60532
    (888) 658.8632
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    Located in one of Chicago's major northwest suburbs, the newly renovated NLU Wheeling includes 20 classrooms with high-tech media equipment, four conference rooms, four computer labs with high-speed Internet access, large student lounge areas with wireless capabilities and interactive video capabilities, and an extensive research library. The site also houses the university library research collection.

    1000 Capitol Drive
    Wheeling, IL 60090
    (888) 658.8632
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    Established in 1988 and located in one of Tampa's major business districts, NLU's Florida Regional Center serves students in 13 counties in central Florida. In addition to its classrooms, the National Louis University Tampa Regional Center features a computer lab, student lounges, and conference room.

    5110 Sunforest Drive, Suite 102
    Tampa, FL 33634
    (800) 366.6581
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