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Call for Proposals 2024

We are now accepting proposals from individuals, organizations and institutions interested in presenting at CAEL’s annual hybrid conference October 30 - November 1, 2024 in New Orleans and online! Presenters will have the opportunity to share their expertise with a diverse audience of thought leaders from throughout the education-employment ecosystem. Our attendees represent workforce and economic developers; postsecondary educators; training organizations; employers and industry groups; and foundations and other mission-aligned organizations.

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Hybrid Event: The 2024 CAEL Conference is planned as a hybrid event experience - we hope that many choose to join us in person in New Orleans, but will have engaging participation and presentation options for those who prefer to participate virtually.

All session proposals must be submitted by March 31, 2024 via our online submission form. We will notify selected presenters in June.

Accepted Proposals will be announced mid-June!


Presentation Formats

Virtual and In-person available in each format


A 50-minute session on a timely topic aligned to one or more Learning Tracks and are designed to introduce colleagues to a topic the presenter is expert in. Workshops must include interactive elements and are designed to introduce colleagues to a topic the presenter is expert in. Attendees can expect to gain actionable takeaways from participating in a workshop. Workshops are not meant to get feedback on a program, product, or service.

EdTalks and WorkforceTalks

7-Minute quick-fire sessions with strict guidelines. Multiple Talks are scheduled in one space in sequence. Designed to give CAEL's collective audience a shallow dive into an interesting topic.


*Please note that your proposal will be carefully evaluated and may be accepted for any of the above format, depending on the scope of content and engagement strategies proposed.

2024 Learning Tracks

Intelligent Solutions

Focused on AI/digital transformation and its potential benefits, challenges, and future trends for postsecondary and the workforce ecosystem. Includes topics such as: recognizing student patterns, supporting persistence and completion, and improving education and employment recruiting through marketing and data-driven approaches.


  • How AI is reshaping the work-learn-earn ecosystem.
  • Implications of generative AI, such as ChatGPT and Bard, for postsecondary educator and trainers and for employers.
  • AI enhanced decision making and reporting.
  • Worker and learner skill development in the age of digital transformation and AI automation.
Adult Learner Ecosystem Models

Focused on creating a holistic learning experience for adult learners by aligning education and curricula with various models: CPL, CBE, accelerated learning, and the changing face of credentials (micro, stackable, work/skills-based, etc.) that support adult learners and workers.


  • CPL best practices, programs, and models.
  • Online and hybrid learning best practices and how to leverage them to deliver positive post-completion outcomes.
  • Roadmaps for noncredit credentials/continuing education.
  • High school to college: innovative programs.
Workforce Talent Solutions

Focused on an education-to-employment ecosystem that fuels equitable economic mobility and community prosperity for adult learners and workers by aligning diverse stakeholders: education and training providers, employers, industry groups, workforce developers, government agencies, and mission-aligned organizations to make a positive difference for adult learners, workers, and their communities. 


  • Regional strategies.
  • Apprenticeships.
  • Forging productive cross-sector partnerships.
  • Listening to worker voices and making them the basis of systemic improvements.
Policy & Advocacy

Focused on higher education, workforce innovation and transformative partnerships which have the capacity to support reform at the state, regional, and national levels.


  • Looking ahead: The Carnegie Unit.
  • Affordability, e.g., innovative financing, Pell Grant, etc.
  • Higher education policy trends, specifically as they relate to adult learners and CPL.
  • Grant-funded work and outcomes that could benefit the skills ecosystem with greater awareness and practice.
Equity & Access

Focused on working toward racial/ethnic, gender, and socioeconomic equity in access to and completion of postsecondary education, including recruiting and retention, development of skills, and acquisition of the continuum of credentials and degrees that deliver high-quality employment, earnings, career advancement, and other positive post-completion outcomes.


  • How successful adult learners can uplift entire communities.
  • Providing meaningful support in the broader effort to support social justice.
  • How attracting, educating and upskilling adult learners and earners fits within the context of today's broad inequities.
  • Demonstrating measurable DEI results.
Adult Learner Engagement: Enrollment, Recruitment, & Retention

Focused on strategies to effectively support adult learners (including special populations such as veterans, incarcerated individuals, etc.) from enrollment through persistence and completion.


  • Supporting adults with limited resources.
  • Supporting adult learner well-being and mental health.
  • Adult learner generational approaches: Gen Z, millennials, Gen X, and beyond.
  • International/global learners.
CAEL’s greatest impact comes from aligning diverse stakeholders around a shared mission to improve the education-employment ecosystem for adult learners and workers. Our conference presentations are invaluable opportunities to share established and emerging best practices that advance our vision that every adult can navigate lifelong learning and career pathways that fuel economic mobility and community prosperity.




Proposal Requirements
  • Proposals should emphasize a relevant subject and investigate the trends and advancements at the intersection of the postsecondary & workforce and economic development space. They should also aim to showcase inventive solutions, distribute research findings, and explore emerging or exemplary practices.
  • Proposals are required to present specific learning outcomes/goals along with a well-defined strategy to actively involve the audience.
  • The titles and descriptions of accepted proposals will be featured on the CAEL conference website.
  • The CAEL conference committee will evaluate and assess proposals based on a rubric which emphasizes clarity, timeliness, quality of content & learning outcomes.
  • The conference committee has the option to reject a submitter’s preferred format and propose an alternative. Before choosing the preferred presentation format for submission, please thoroughly review the available options provided.
  • All requested speaker information should be included in the proposal submission. If selected, this information will be displayed on the conference website.
  • Proposals are evaluated by committee and rated on the following criteria: completion; clarity; interactivity; content; learning outcomes; relevance and alignment with CAEL's theory of change, specifically the ultimate outcome that all adult learners have an equitable opportunity for, and success in, obtaining credentials and skills that lead to well-paying, good quality jobs, increased earnings and economic mobility, and an improved quality of life.
  • Deadline for submission will be March 31, 2024. Accepted proposals will be announced by mid-June.

Presentation Formats
  • What is a Workshop? - Workshops will consist of 50-minute sessions aligned with seven learning tracks, running concurrently with one live-streamed session. These workshops aim to encourage interaction and collaboration among conference attendees. Workshop attendees can expect to gain actionable takeaways from participating in a workshop. They are not intended for soliciting feedback on programs, products, or services, nor do they follow a lecture-style presentation format. Virtual workshops can be presented in real time  or pre-recorded. 
  • What are The Talks? - EdTalks and WorkforceTalks are quick-fire sessions, each lasting 7 minutes, conducted with precise guidelines, offering CAEL's collective audience a brief exploration of compelling topics within our field. These talks are sequentially arranged in a single space and moderated. Presentations must adhere to a maximum of 7 minutes and utilize no more than 14 slides, ensuring legibility with a minimum font size of 28pt. Virtual “Talks” will be pre-recorded presentations. 
  • Virtual Opportunities - The 2024 CAEL Conference is designed to offer a hybrid event experience, providing opportunities for both in-person attendance in New Orleans and engaging participation and presentation options for those who prefer to join virtually. All presentation formats will be accessible both virtually and in-person, ensuring flexibility for attendees to participate in their preferred mode.
  • The speakers chosen for the event are accountable for covering all expenses related to participation, encompassing registration fees, accommodation, and travel costs. No discounts, beyond those available to CAEL members, are offered to speakers.
  • To be considered for the selection of their proposal, speakers are required to remain available for the entirety of the conference duration across all days. CAEL will attempt to accommodate schedule conflicts, but cannot guarantee session placement on a preferred date or time. 
  • All selected speakers must register and pay to attend the 2024 CAEL Conference by August 31st, 2024.
  • Accepted speakers will receive access to the speaker resource center, allowing them to review their accepted proposal, update contact information, and upload presentation resources. The deadline for these actions is October 18th.

For any additional questions, please contact conference@cael.org


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