A New Type of Conference is HERE


Have you gone to a conference with an “international” or “intercultural” theme and been disappointed?

Sadly, so have I.   Really disappointed.

This is precisely how I’ve felt about 90% of conferences in “our field”:

  • Rushed from session to session
  • That quality and creativity of the vast majority of the sessions were below par
  • Uncomfortable with what I believe is a  somewhat self-congratulatory undertone
  • Disappointed by the high price for the low value
  • Frustrated by the increasing commercialization of our learning environs
  • That I was served a huge dose of “more of the same”
  • Sad and uninspired

So, the hive and I are doing something about it.  We’ve spent time imagining a conference that:

  • Has a theme that is meaningful and applicable to our personal and professional selves
  • Incorporates time for reflection between sessions, not just bathroom break/coffee rushes
  • Is experiential and highly creative
  • Allows for people to learn from not only the presenters, but from each other
  • Recognizes the unique styles of introverts and extroverts
  • Wraps with an action plan that inspires
  • Is different from anything we’ve seen

This new event (some will call it a “conference” ) is “The Melibee Swarm” and it will take place on October 13/14, 2014 in Asheville, North Carolina.  For those who don’t know the magic of Asheville, it is recognized for its gorgeous mountains, farm to table food, strong belief in education and community, and its phenomenal arts scene.

Why should we Swarm with the Melibees?  The technical definition of swarming  is “a collective behavior exhibited by animals of similar size which aggregate together, perhaps milling about the same spot or moving en masse, or migrating in some direction.  As a term, swarming is applied particularly to insects.”  We are Melibees after all, so we’re going to explore swarming and see if we move conversation around culture, identity and perception in a new and exciting direction!

I’m SO ready to swarm?  Are you?

I can assure you that:

–          it will be something unlike what you’ve experienced before at a “conference”

–          every presentation will be reflected upon and built upon – focusing on culture, identity and perspective

–          you will leave with a more authentic relationship with your peers/colleagues, not with just a stack of business cards

–          you will look at your life and work from a very different angle

–          you WILL be inspired to incorporate more creativity into your work and life

–          You will have more clarity about how to engage others in the beauty and value of international education and intercultural dialogue

–          You will be changed and be able to express how so

Here is more information about the Melibee Swarm!


  1. Amanda Batista says:

    This is SO exciting, Missy! A conference that engages fellow attendees to create actual personal bonds beyond just the standard professional exchange? I’m in! I find myself wanting to go up to everyone around me at conferences and say “Tell me your life story!!” — and don’t feel like I get enough opportunities (or time!) to do just that. I feel inspired already and can’t wait to hear more about it!

  2. I’m so excited Amanda! It is essentially the conference I’ve wanted to attend for years – LOL! So glad to hear you’re inspired! More info will be coming – stay tuned!

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