2:00 – 5:30 p.m.

Conference Registration

5:30 – 7:00 p.m. Opening Reception
Pool Courtyard
Sponsored by: Franklin Templeton


7:30 a.m.

Sponsored by: Orion Advisor Solutions
WiFi Sponsored by: Vestwell
WiFi Password: Vestwell
All Day Beverages Sponsored by: NY Life

8:30 a.m.

Welcome to the CSF Conference
CSF Chair: Vivian Tsai, Senior Director, Head of Relationship Management, TIAA

8:45 a.m.

College in the 21st Century
The world of work is changing at an unprecedented speed- disrupting business, education and the general population.  What jobs will disappear?  What jobs will be created?  How will businesses find the talent that they need in real time?  How will individuals know how to prepare to support themselves and their families?  Most of the conversation is around the percent of jobs that will be lost.  Few are talking about the fact that changes in skill and competency demands will continue to shape the future of work.  Life-long learning has been a talking point, but now the need to re-educate yourself in order to retain your current job or be qualified for a future job is real.  Saving for college was formerly a one-time experience.  In the future we will need to support new educational efforts throughout our lives. And earning a two or four -year degree may be done in modules at different educational entities.  This session will look at the role of the individual, the institutions and employers in funding post-secondary continuing education, examine some emerging practices, and talk about the implications for public and private intermediaries in educating all stakeholders about preparing for the future.  Expect a lively discussion!
Moderator: Mary Morris, CEO, Virginia 529
Speaker: Jane Oates, President, Working Nation

9:45 a.m.

Sponsored by:
John Hancock Investment Management

10:00 a.m.

Federal Legislative Issues/Regulatory Updates
CSF’s lobbying firm gives their perspectives on all aspects of the changes in Washington on 529 specific issues.  MSRB will provide a high level update of regulatory changes.
Moderator: Leslie Crudele, Government Relations Director, Virginia 529
Barbara Pate, Partner, Davis & Harman
Mike Hadley, Partner, Davis & Harman
Abha Mohla, Associate Director, Market Regulation, MSRB
Bri Joiner, Director, Regulatory Compliance, MSRB

11:00 a.m.

Financial Market Update – Market Outlook in a Challenging Economy
This session will include a market outlook on a range of asset classes leveraging view of the network of asset managers for John Hancock Investment Management, including risks and opportunities with the markets and the outlook for 2023.
Moderator: Ed Kaminski, Senior Business Consultant, New York Life Stable Value
Speaker: Emily Roland, Co-Chief Investment Strategist, John Hancock Investment Management

11:45 a.m.

Court of Two Sisters

613 Royal Street
Sponsored by: Vestwell

1:00 p.m.

New and Innovative Ideas in the World of 529s
Session panelists and conference attendees will share new ways of reaching out to attract new clients, create new efficiencies, enhance engagement with existing clients and ways of doing business in the 529 industry. There will be a panel of participants who will provide a 2-3 minute description of an innovative idea or creative tool that they are using today in their plan.  We will also be asking conference attendees to share an innovative idea or creative tool that they are using in their programs.
Moderator: Wayne Weber, CEO, Gift of College
Jean Seidel, Senior Director, Head of Operations, Tuition Financing, Inc. TIAA
Sherri Wyatt, Chief Compliance Officer, Virginia529
Martha Slitt, Senior Vice President, Government Savings, Ascensus

2:00 p.m.

How to Market to the Impulse Generation
How can the industry effectively market/educate the GenZ cohort and their parents on effective preparation for college savings.  This session will focus on behavioral transformation – the kind of marketing dynamic we are seeing with what can be branded as the “Impulse Generation,” a generation of information consumers fundamentally reprogrammed by mobile devices and short form content and the challenges and opportunity for effectively reaching them.  The session will also look at solutions in terms of the kind of content and execution organizations should be thinking about in this context to effectively reach and educate these audiences.
Moderator: Sandie Palmer, Sr. Vice President, Head of 529 Distribution, Franklin Templeton
Peter Prodromou, President, Boathouse Communications
Bob Parks, Principal, Boathouse Communications

2:45 p.m.

Trends and Headwinds Impacting the Transformation of Higher Education Models
This session will discuss economic, demographic, technological and political trends affecting the higher education sector.  We will discuss the acceleration of sector headwinds due to the pandemic and the rapid pace of transformation that is driving innovation in higher educational operating models, including the need to move outside of traditional enrollment and household educational financing models.
Moderator: Tony Durkan, Vice President, Head of 529 Relationship Mgt, Fidelity Investments
Speaker: Dave Richardson, Managing Director and Head of Research, TIAA Institute

3:30 p.m.

Pricing Trends in Higher Education
This session will cover the different strategies colleges and universities are employing to entice students and families, how a Department of Justice decision has impacted colleges’ ability to coerce students, why students increasingly feel pressured to apply early decision, which is a binding agreement, even though it doesn’t allow them to compare financial packages, and how upcoming changes in the FAFSA is affecting families now.
Moderator: Deborah Smith, Education Savings Lead, John Hancock Investment Management
Speaker: Nancy Steenson, Steenson College Coaching

4:15 p.m.

Unique Perspective on the Impact of the Emergency Closing of 2 Universities and the Impact it had on Students
Dr. Scott Cowen, as president of Tulane and Case Western Universities will provide a description of what happened with the universities after both had to delay reopening for a variety of reasons.  This session will address any impact that had on the students and the universities with a discussion about similarities and differences in each case as well as what he see for the future of colleges and universities.
Moderator: Rachel Ramos, Senior Product Manager, Capital Group Companies
Speaker: Scott Cowen, PhD, President Emeritus, Tulane University

5:00 p.m.


6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Evening Event
Bourbon Orleans Hotel
Bourbon O Lounge
Sponsored by: TIAA Nuveen


7:30 a.m.

Sponsored by:
Capital Group Companies

8:30 a.m.

“Going to be a Whole New World” …What Lies Ahead? Where is U.S. Education and Work Force Policy Headed?
This is a moment in history where the value and purpose of higher education is being scrutinized and questioned in a way that it has not been done since before World War II and the GI Bill. Rising tuition costs, record student debt, debates about the value of a college degree, disputes over the content of college curricula and good paying job and career opportunities have become one of the country’s sharpest political and partisan dividing lines. Citizens and elected officials are openly critical of the Education Industry and are demanding better outcomes, systematic change, more accountability and transparency. This session will review the current debate on the effectiveness of the current educational system and the changes needed to respond to the changing market and employment requirements. It will provide an overview of the policy discussions on the future role of postsecondary education in work force development, training, career credentialing and lifelong learning.
Moderator: Peter Mazareas, Co-Founder, Invite Education
Speaker: Anthony Carnavale, Research Professor and Director, Georgetown University Center on
Education and the Workforce

9:30 a.m.

FinTech: Harnessing Technology to Advance 529 Plans
The panel will demystify “FinTech,” and discuss how it is being used today in the 529 space, and how we might leverage it in the future. Topics include robo-advisor platforms, family savings apps, debit cards, financial wellness, crowdfunding, fraud mitigation and payment solutions.
Moderator: Aaron Schumm, CEO, Vestwell
Speakers: Laurel Taylor, CEO, Candidly 
 Eric Spear, SVP Engineering, Flywire 
 Jordan Lee, CEO, Backer

10:15 a.m.

Sponsored by:
Virginia 529

10:35 a.m.

529s through Financial Advisors – Help Me Help You!
Working with a financial professional can help individuals develop a plan and maintain the discipline to reach their college savings goals.  Join us to discuss how successful financial advisors are positioning 529s within their clients’ portfolios; and hear from leading advisor-sold 529 plans on their outreach efforts to financial advisors and distribution partners.  We’ll be discussing the opportunities and challenges in trying to keep 529s a priority for clients and the financial firms that manage and distribute 529 plans.
Moderator: John Park, Voce President, US Wealth Advisory, BlackRock
Tommy McBride, Managing Director, McBride & Associates, Merrill Lynch
John Pidhirny, Senior Advisor Consultant, Franklin Templeton
Mark DiSipio, Vice President, US Wealth Advisory, BlackRock

11:35 a.m.

Closing Remarks Vivian Tsai, CSF Chair

11:40 p.m.

Conference Ends

11:45 a.m.

Bag Lunch to Go
Sponsored by: Invesco and Ascensus