Abby Olcese
KU Edwards Campus

Free digital conference provides leadership development, connects business leaders to local talent

Thu, 04/23/2020

OVERLAND PARK — The University of Kansas Edwards Campus will host a one-day digital conference May 1, bringing together area business leaders and KU Edwards Campus students. The Destination Talent conference will provide essential skills training on critical workplace topics and connect students with employers looking to hire the next generation of talented professionals.

“Good leadership is needed now more than ever to help Kansas City businesses keep going and emerge strong from this unprecedented time,” said Carolyn McKnight, KU Edwards Campus director of community engagement. “Offering this valuable training online allows important professional development to continue and for employers to meet the rising professionals who will take their organizations into the future.”

The conference features two separate tracks offered on Zoom: one featuring student capstone research presentations and another featuring a series of one-hour trainings on workplace topics, including civility in the workplace, mindfulness at work, and diversity, equity and inclusion. Participants have the option to move between Zoom rooms, allowing them to be strategic in meeting their professional goals, as well as their organization’s needs.

“We’re excited to offer this opportunity to bring employers and students together,” said Alex Terwilliger, KUEC’s associate director of student services. “By combining discussion on workplace topics with research presentations from our students, business leaders in the Kansas City area can get the training they need and see how this incoming group of professionals addresses some of the same issues employers are trying to address right now.”

The conference offers up to six Society for Human Research Management (SHRM) credits for HR professionals who attend, providing a valuable professional development opportunity as well as networking.

“We’ve chosen topics and expert presenters who will provide attendees with a broader understanding of best practices to apply to their workplace culture,” Terwilliger said. “We want everyone who attends to come away feeling they’re ready to take on the needs of their market.”

KU Edwards Campus Vice Chancellor David Cook said the online event helps the university continue to meet the needs of businesses and working professionals in the Kansas City area, even at a distance.

“We’re glad we can offer this important training and networking opportunity online. It’s vital that Kansas City area business leaders and employers continue to develop their leadership skills and that our students have an opportunity to demonstrate the outstanding expertise they have to offer,” Cook said. “We know everyone who participates will find the content and the connections they make directly applicable to the work they do.”

Area professionals interested in attending the destination talent conference can register for free at

KU in the news
RT @UnivOfKansas : Is there a link between how life evolved and our own economic processes? In his new book, a KU professor examines how evo…

One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times
KU Today