Special Interest Groups (SIGs)

Alison Weston
, New River Community College (VA)
Emily Ewoldt, Radford University (VA)
James Pennix, Roanoke College (VA)

A SIG is a Special Interest Group that brings colleagues together to explore a topic or population in higher education / K-12 through discussion, networking and resource sharing. PCACAC has served as a leading affiliate in many ways, including launching our very own SIGs in 2018. Since then, we have grown from three to ten SIGs:

Pride Month Series: June 2024

The LGBTQ+ & Ally SIG is gearing up for its fourth Pride Month Series this coming June and we’re looking for more members to be active contributors to our programming.
While the official schedule is in the works, all of our sessions are in need of panelists, co-presenters, or expert input. Please review the details below. Everyone is encouraged to forward any details to colleagues whom you feel would be a good fit for one or more of these opportunities. Please express interest in participating or contributing to any of our topics through THIS FORM.

Session 1: Identity in the Workplace
We are looking to have 5 panelists of LGBTQ+ identified professionals working in any capacity related to higher education admissions (high school/college counseling, undergraduate admissions, CBOs, IECs, etc.). We would like to have representation across PCACAC, so we have a diverse array of colleagues from different geographic locations, years of experience in the field, LGBTQ+ identities, public/private schools, and more. The expectation of panelists will be to discuss what their experience has been like as an LGBTQ+ identified professional within our field of work, what observations have been made about the workplace environments they’ve been in, and what transpired at their job to encourage them to stay or leave.

Session 2: Onboarding & Retaining LGBTQ+ Staff
This session needs expert insight and/or a co-presenter who has experience with leading or contributing to the onboarding and retention efforts of LGBTQ+ employees. While many training, onboarding, and retention initiatives are applicable to all staff, we are looking for input from those who have specifically organized opportunities for LGBTQ+ identified employees. We also welcome feedback from LGBTQ+ identified staff who would like to share what opportunities were available to them and/or wishes or ideal scenarios in what they hope this process would’ve looked like for them.

Session 3: Inclusive Technology Practices – Part 2
During our June 2022 series, we invited CRM experts to discuss how their specific system can be best utilized in regards to our LGBTQ+ students’ unique needs. We’re bringing this session back and looking for two college admissions panelists and one high school counseling panelist, each of whom will have 5 or more years of experience in their respective CRM. Preference for our college admissions panelists will be given to those whose CRM is Slate or SalesForce.

Session 4: The College Search & Campus Visit
This session is asking for expert insight and/or a co-presenter who has experience facilitating college campus visitation programming for LGBTQ+ students and/or provides leadership over undergraduate admissions tour guides. This is a combined session of helping students understand how to go about their college search process to identify inclusive and accepting schools as well as providing guidance on how to make the most of the college campus visit to get their unique questions answered and anxieties addressed.

The LGBTQ+ & Ally SIG greatly appreciates your time, consideration, and sharing of this information. We hope for Pride Month Series to be exceptionally more collaborative, interactive, and network-building than it’s ever been before.
Please email SIG Co-Chair, Shawn Ficadenti with any questions, curiosities, or expressed interest.

If you have an idea for a new SIG or would you like to get connected to the leaders and members of our current SIGs, please contact the chair.
We are looking forward to seeing the number of SIGs grow
. YOU may be just the leader that we need for our newest SIG!





PCACAC Celebrated PRIDE Month 2022!

Our LGBTQ+Ally SIG facilitated a series of virtual sessions in June 2022. These programs were offered for admissions counselors and school counselors.

Session 1: LGBTQIA+ Student Panel, followed by Q&A
Session 2: CRMs and LGBTQIA+
Session 3: Transgender Healthcare
Session 4: LGBT Trivia Contest



PCACAC'S PRIDE month series included this PRIDE playlist, featuring LGBTQIA+ anthems from the last 50 years. Celebrate the rainbow through song!