Bridge Conference 2014

October 27 and 28, 2014

@ The HUB, UW Campus, Seattle


About Bridge Conference 2014: Making Learning Personal

We hope for a world in which all youth are accessing quality services both in and out of school that help them succeed in school and in life. We believe this can only be achieved through strong partnerships between schools and afterschool and youth development (AYD) programs. The Bridge Conference brings together education and community leaders serving youth both in and out of school to come together to strengthen these partnerships between our formal education system and AYD programs.

This year's theme is Making Learning Personal, emphasizing how meaningful learning is ignited by personal passion, supports social-emotional learning all the while building competency in academics. Sessions will focus on how educators can connect to students as individuals, nurture their interests, and support cognitive and social-emotional development.

Pre-Conference Weather Balloon Event

Come to Bridge a day early and engage in an amazing, youth-facilitated workshop where participants will learn, through hands-on participation, all the logistical & practical elements of one of the most amazing and awe-inspiring STEM projects available to our youth, launching a weather balloon!

This exciting event will showcase a powerful example of STEM/Project-Based Learning for afterschool and youth development programs to replicate at their sites.

Workshop leaders include Brent Cummings, 21st CCLC Project Director from Walla Walla School District, and a cadre of Latina student-scientists from Garrison Middle School. Take a look at a video of Garrison’s balloon launch last year.


Keynotes and Major Speakers

Dennis Littky
Co-Founder and Co-Director of Big Picture Learning and the Met-Center
Darlene Flynn
Racial equity consultant
& trainer
Robin DiAngelo
Associate Professor, Westfield State University
Belma Michael Johnson
Vice President, Communications & External Relations, LA's Best

Dennis Littky, co-founder and co-director of Big Picture Learning and the Met Center, will be the Bridge 2014 keynote speaker. Littky advocates for a non-traditional approach to education that delivers concrete results. He believes that children need to be engaged on a personal basis, their interests and passions need to be incorporated into a learning environment so that the education they receive is applicable to their own unique personalities. He is nationally known for his extensive work in secondary education in urban, suburban, and rural settings.

Watch Dennis speak at TEDx NYED.

Robin DiAngelo and Darlene Flynn will discuss power dynamics in cross racial relationships and how to address them as a primary strategy for creating racial equity in our work. Robin received her PhD from the University of Washington and is currently an Associate Professor of Multicultural Education at Westfield State University in Massachusetts. Darlene works as a racial equity consultant and trainer.

Drawing from his previous career in television, journalism, the music business and publishing, Belma Michael Johnson has reconfigured the LA's BEST Communications Department to have a robust social-media ecosystem; to produce its own weekly television series on Expanded Learning; to publish books about Expanded Learning; to write, edit, produce and distribute original web videos illustrating Expanded Learning; and to empower the organization to tell its own story rather than rely exclusively on soliciting coverage from traditional media outlets. One of the department's key projects is to create the Kids Can Network, a digital coalition of like-minded after school and OST programs to define and advocate for Expanded Learning—the student-centered approach to education that starts with what kids CAN do, rather than what they can't. Discuss how the Expanded Learning movement is entering the Digital Age.

How to register


Simply go to our registration page and fill out your information.

The fee for registration is $375—the same as last year—and includes all sessions, breakfast and lunch on both days, and time to network.

You can pay with credit card, check, or purchase order. We must receive payment before you can attend the conference.

Groups of 10+

Send your whole staff to Bridge and save!

This year, if 10 people from the same organization register, we will offer an additional registration free!

Simply register your first 10 as individuals at our registration page, and let us know at We'll then provide you with a discount code for your eleventh staff member!

Scholarships available for state-licensed programs

School’s Out Washington is offering partial scholarships to the Bridge Conference to qualified applicants.

To qualify, you must:

  • Identify as a person of color, and/or work in a program or school serving 75% or more youth of color,
  • Work at a program site or school in the state of Washington,
  • Work in a Washington state licensed, exempt, or tribally-certified child care or afterschool program and
  • Commit to attending both days of the conference.

Scholarships are awarded on a first-come first served basis. Applications are due not later than September 26, 2014, so apply for a scholarship now!

Our Sponsors

Join us as a sponsor!

Looking for an opportunity to engage with the afterschool and youth development field? Have a product or service that you’d like to share? Join us as a sponsor of the Bridge Conference!

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