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Is AASHE 2020 on Your Boss’s Radar?

When it comes to your professional development, AASHE’s Annual Conference & Expo is the premier educational and networking event for higher education sustainability professionals. Obtaining support to attend is easier when you can explain the benefits of attending the conference and, ultimately, that you can’t afford to miss it. Your entire team—in fact, your organization or institution—will benefit from the information and insights you’ll gain.

Why You Can’t Afford to Stay Home!


More than 250 different educational sessions are planned over the three-day period will return you to your department energized and empowered with new and innovative techniques and strategies to benefit your campus and the surrounding community. The schedule of programming is designed to maximize the value of your time away from the office.

The sessions are presented by industry experts and colleagues who deliver current information on challenges and solutions that impact the higher education sustainability community. Multiple programs running concurrently allow you the flexibility to tailor an educational experience that meets the specific needs of your institution.

Expo Hall

Meet face-to-face with vendors and preview new products and services in the exhibit hall that can save you time and help you meet your sustainable goals. Nearly 100 vendors will be showcasing services, including scooters, sustainable food packaging, compostable coffee cups and much more.


Once a year you have the opportunity to network, share ideas, and learn new ones with higher education sustainability leaders from institutions throughout the world. There are so many opportunities to make new connections and gain insight from people who understand the exact issues you face each day.

Make a Plan to Get Support!

Plan Early

In addition to advance registration discounts, planning early will enable you to obtain lower airfares and ensure availability in conference hotels offering significant discounts over standard room rates. An early request shows that you are a careful planner. AASHE also offers scholarships to help cover registration costs. The application deadline is in early summer.

Formalize Your Request in Writing

Support your request with concrete reasons you should attend. To make things as easy as possible, we created a draft letter that you are welcome to download and use.

Prepare a Budget for the Cost of Attending

Carefully map out all of the likely expenses for attending and consider options for cutting costs such as sharing a hotel room with a colleague.

Involve Your Staff and Boss

Share conference information and ask them for input on which educational sessions would benefit the institution the most. Offer to share access to the conference presentations after the event. Please note: We cannot guarantee all conference presentations will be available as they are uploaded post-conference on a voluntary basis by our presenters.

You can also ask for input on the vendors about which they would be interested in learning more so you can be sure to connect with them in the expo hall.

While You Are Out of the Office

Remind your employer that current technology allows you to be easily accessible during your time away from the office and explain how coverage will be maintained while you’re away.

Hit the Ground Running When You Return!

Be sure to maintain an action list of ideas you want to implement or develop further when you return. You can then summarize this list and provide an executive report for your employer. By doing so, you demonstrate the value in attending and plant the seeds for attendance at future annual conferences.

Remember to share ideas and vendor information with colleagues and staff!

Access the Sample Attendance Letter